Being unique requires commitment and hard work. Remember the article on artwork created using Microsoft Excel? Engineers tend to use different materials for their projects, some are quite basic such as cement and wood while others are more complex. However, sometimes it’s the use of a common material, done ingeniously, that makes it so wonderful. The same was done by a craftsman, Valerii Danevych. Our star of the day is a woodcrafter from Ukraine.
The guy has dedicated his life to one goal; creating wrist watches which are functional and made out of wood. The guy is creative and designs watches that are not only unique, but also functional.The watches have only one metal part, the metal spring which is required in order to facilitate the movement. He hails from a very lengthy line of cabinet makers, yet he didn’t find that interesting enough. Valerii was fascinated with wood since he was a child and it was this fascination that led to creation of miniatures made of wood. These included a 3 centimeters long wooden guitar model with strings made of human hair. Once he grew up and honed his skills, he was no longer satisfied with miniatures and fixing wooden objects. That’s when his brain started wandering in search of new ideas whose execution would give him satisfaction. One of such ideas that actually struck him was of making mechanical stuff out of wood. In 2005, he started working on his ‘next big thing’; a wooden functional wrist watch. Please note that he had no training whatsoever as a watchmaker at that time.
After a span of three years which included his quest for finding the right wood for different parts and learning the basics of watch making, he finally came up with his first of the many to come watches in 2008. This one was a wooden pocket watch. This was the point where he decided to make more unique watches out of wood. Using a microscope to work and make the parts work seamlessly, our watchmaker’s watches are quite accurate; a 5 min accuracy per day for wrist watches. He has been able to mimic complex mechanisms using his wood pieces such as flying tourbillon. His perfect creation is a necklace watch which has a diameter of 0.0013 m and doesn’t contain a single screw. His most recent creation is a men’s wristwatch which costs €100,000. You think that’s too much to ask for a wooden watch? He spent 1,800 hours in creating it and has incorporated tourbillon movement along with full retrograde indication. Kind of justifies the high price, don’t you think? Valerii Danevych has been nominated to the Horological Academy of Independent Creators.