Hello Y’all and Welcome to Episode 48 of Tenn & Two
Today we are excited to be joined by Chase Fancher from Oak & Oscar. This is an interview and a watch brand that we have been incredibly excited about for some time now. Chase has sent over to us one of their pieces, the Olmsted, for a few weeks and now that we have hands on experience, we are ready to find out more about the brand. So without further adieu, here is our interview with Chase.
About Chase and Oak & Oscar
Chase gives us a brief bit of history on the brand as he founded Oak & Oscar in 2015 and they are coming up on their 5th anniversary. After being unhappy by his day job and wanting have better opportunities to spend time with his family, he decided to start a watch brand. The idea comes from his passion from wanting to love what he does, and watches made sense. Even the name ties in to what Chase loves: Oak referring to his love of bourbon (as bourbons are aged in Oak barrels); and Oscar being the name of his dog (who makes a few appearances in this episode. As a man who has been intrigued by watches for some time, it was a simple quartz watch at a young age that worked underwater which fascinated him and drove that passion. Fortunately, his wife was highly supportive and five years later they were fortunate enough to outlast many other micro brands which usually won’t make it beyond their first watch.
We spend some time talking about their first launch and the difficulty of watches in their price point. Chase discuses the fact that he was adamant about not launching the first piece on Kickstarter as many brands do because he wanted to set this apart as a luxury watch. With their price point, they definitely set themselves apart as an entry level luxury watch and Chase discusses how he designs the watches and who the Oak & Oscar customer is.
A Chicago Based Company with Open Doors and a Clear Style
Chase and the Oak & Oscar brand are based here in the States, from Chicago, Illinois. He really believes in building relationships with their clients and that passion comes through. In embracing this idea, Chase recently opened up their headquarters to allow for tours and private viewings. This allows for people to see their lineup in the metal and keeps while continuing to develop relationships with their fans. They have recently added virtual appointments as well, giving people from all over the world the opportunity to see the collection and learn more about them. It has an added benefit of hands on instruction with bracelet and nato adjustments, adding a truly personalized experience.
Kat brings up the fact that all Oak & Oscar timepieces have an obvious style and we discuss where this came from. Chase works to design his website, watches, and everything in between based on his personal taste, developing a pallet that is uniquely Oak & Oscar.
We Talk Collaborations
It was last year that Oak & Oscar introduced the Ashland, a special collaboration with Chicago based company WIlson. Chase talks about how it may not have even happened as he got a random email from Wilson and was quite skeptical. Intrigued, he met with the team and the idea of doing a watch collaboration was born. Chase talks about some of the ideas that he passed around in developing the watch and how they settled on the first bezel specifically designed to track baseball. As if that weren’t cool enough, we chat about the fact that there are Oak & Oscar baseball gloves out there which are apparently collectible.
Check out details on the sold out Ashland here.
And if that weren’t cool enough, there is the partnership with One Tail at a Time. Dogs are clearly important to Chase, (after all, his business takes its name from his family dog). The organization focuses on supporting local dogs. We chat about why this matters so much to Chase and how important it is as a brand to give back.
As far as future collaborations, Chase is very open to doing more in the future. His dream, a bourbon/Oak & Oscar collaboration (which we could definitely see happening).
Coronavirus, Anniversary and Future Plans
Well, of course given the state of the world that we live in, Coronavirus is a discussion that naturally comes up. Chase talks about the importance of their new virtual appointment program now that this virus has spread into the United States. We talk about how much more difficult this environment is for micro brands than it is for the big ones, especially with the Wind Up Watch Fair which many of them showcase at is cancelled. All this also coming at a time when the brand is celebrating 5 years of business. While they aren’t producing a watch for this event, their hope is to be able to continue to plan a few owner’s dinners across the country over the upcoming months.
What’s next, more awesome watches.
Wrist Watch Check
Thankfully for us ladies Chase keeps us on track and reminds us that we haven’t done a wrist watch check just yet. He also reveals that he’s from Tennessee which of course means he grew up as a Tennessee Vols fan and must be the reason for so many orange accents (or Katlen insists as much anyways). But to the wrist watch check. As Chase is our guest of honor he goes first wearing the blue dial Olmsted. Katlen is also wearing an Oak & Oscar with the grey dial Olmsted that we have in for review. On Kat’s wrist, the Rolex Polar Explorer.
We want to thank Chase once again for spending the afternoon chatting with us and we hope that you guys really enjoyed learning more about this awesome brand. Be sure to check out Oak & Oscar through their website (www.oakandoscar.com) and follow them on Instagram @oakandoscar.
We look forward to chatting to y’all again soon!
Kat, Katlen, and Chase
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