From Paper to Reality – Part 2

Knotty Nawadhinsukh Words by Knotty Nawadhinsukh


Last time we did a profile of designer Matthew Humphries, we went more at length about his stint as Head of Design for Morgan Cars, penning such models as the Aero SuperSport and its rejuvenated Three Wheeler. This time around we thought it would be also ideal to focus on his talent and creativity in his current pursuit in horology, known as MHD Watches, his own company.

MHD SQ1 in Black Dial


The MHD range of watches launched since last year may have become Matthew’s personal design endeavour right now, but its roots still relied from his flair in the automotive design front. “I became fascinated with the detail and proportions involved in producing a dial design”, said Humphries. To grasp on MHD’s watch design principles, he further elaborated, “They are limited in editions and use the design principles and processes from vehicle design to produce them.  The MHD CR1 and SQ1 have a longer than normal second hand so you can read this easily if using the watch as a timer”. To give the more added flavour of a driving machine on your wrist, Humphries applied “influence from the in ‘the red zone’ (on the rev counter) of the car dial to give a graphical link to the automobile within the dial of the MHD SQ1” and gave “a nod to the past whilst embracing modern design.” In so doing, MHD Watches may look like a totally new timepiece at first glance yet offered a retro-feel when you start to go through it in more detail. According to Humphries that was done intentionally, “Our watches take influence from my favorite time period of watch design in the 1960’s and the 1970’s, but then have a modern design twist.  We also utilise automotive design principles in designing our watches.  All the lines used on an MHD Watches must have tension in them and the design is all down to its proportions.”

MHD CR1 also available in Black Dial


As an independent designer Matthew has now more time to get his creative juice flowing with new products ahead. This is thanks to a very strong support by his side, “my wife Penelope is a textile artist and also runs MHD Watches from behind the scene. MHD Watches would not run without her, as she keeps the company ticking along in the background and has a brilliant design judgment when it comes to those final watch design decisions.” With that type of foundation, it does indeed sounds reassuring for us to know that there will be modern day chronographs, such as those from MHD, which would have the DNA that match perfectly with the dashboards and consoles of our Porsche 911E or the Alfa Romeo Spider Duetto!

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CR1 Contrasting "Panda" Dial