When attending a festival in Washington State several years ago, I met Patty and Micheal. Avid Celeste collectors, they were easy to get along with and we always shared a few laughs.

Patty called one day to tell me that Micheal was about to have a significant birthday and could I make a train watch for him? He loved the Union Pacific Big Boy 4014 train and he would be over-the-moon excited to receive it. She said it was important to have the 4014 Big Boy designation on it and wanted atmosphere in the sky.

I said, “Oh, that sounds amazing!” And I made other statements like, “no problem.” I was looking forward to getting started but when I looked again at the picture of the Big Boy Train, I began to see, more clearly, the jaw-dropping detail of that train and was suddenly thinking, how in the world am I going to do this? I’d never stretched to this level of detail before. Thankfully, Patty had asked early and I had about six weeks, until his birthday, to figure it out. No pressure.

The thing about a challenge is that it makes you dig deep into your personal resources and you never know what you might find in your own stash, just below the surface. This project forced me to innovate and try new techniques. I'm happy to say that with each new watch design, I get a little better and this particular dial has helped me open new doors that are expanding my skills and techniques. I’m so grateful for the opportunity make it. And especially, to make it for Michael.

Learn more about having a meaningful and completely unique watch designed and produced especially for you.

Celeste Wong