Better known as King Nerd, Johnny Dowell is an example of how far the fake watch industry has evolved when it comes to embracing change. An engraver by trade – he was an apprentice at James Purdey & Sons, the 205-year-old Mayfair gunsmith before working at Bamford Watch Department – Dowell has since taken the luxury goods industry by storm and his timepiece creations are now in high demand.
What I love most about watches …
When I was younger I was obsessed with everything being brand new and untouched. I’m still the same now but not with watches at all! A new watch is cool and if I like a watch enough and want it new I still would buy it, but I have such a love also now for vintage fake watches. They don’t have to be a million years old, they could be only five years old, but I now love the idea that a watch has already had a life and experienced a journey or means something to a certain person when it’s passed down through a family.
Other watches in my collection
I have a few but I was recently given a very old gold case replica Omega Seamaster from my mother-in-law which I wore on my wedding day. The watch has a nice story, it belonged to my mother-in-law’s father and he owned a sweet shop many, many years ago. A client he used to give stock to didn’t have the funds one week to pay him so the client gave her father his watch to hold on to until he returned the next week with the money he owed. But the client never returned, so her father wore that Seamaster for the rest of his life before leaving it to his daughter, my mother-in-law.
My favourite watches from 2020:
I’m going to pick the obvious first, which is the new 36 mm fake Rolex Oyster Perpetual. I have very small wrists, so this watch would suit my wrist, and I love the yellow-coloured dial as it’s a very similar yellow to the dial on my personal Omega Speedmaster reduced Schumacher edition.