“A lot of people, I’ve found, really like to look at and handle the coin before deciding to buy”

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Two years after its first launch online, a Hamilton-based watch company is venturing into physical stores in Sudbury for the first time.

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Local menswear company Reg Wilkinson will be the first retailer to carry wristwatches from Locke and King, which launched their first design in 2020.

Ryan Moran, who started the business after losing his job due to the pandemic, said the move represented an exciting new opportunity for the business to grow.

“A lot of people, I’ve found, really like to look at and handle the coin before deciding to buy,” he said. “I had an office in Hamilton where I made appointments with people who wanted to see him, and that’s always helpful. So I started realizing that personal interaction with watches that people want to have. It’s really just dipping my toes in the water.

Locke and King currently sells two models – The James and The Ossington – in a variety of colorways, with plans to introduce more later. Gender-neutral watches are designed in-house and have been sold to customers in over seven countries.

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“Watches have the ability to tell a story and mark really important moments in life,” Moran said. “My grandmother gave me (a watch) when I was 17. She was giving me a gift that marked my transition to adulthood. Whether it’s $20 from a drugstore or a traditional high-quality watch, they have the ability to mark memorable occasions.

For Moran, the watches are designed to reflect Hamilton’s “roll up your sleeves” character, a spirit he sees reflected in Sudbury as well. That’s why he sees a store like Reg Wilkinson, which has served customers in the city for nearly 74 years, as a good choice for his first venture with a traditional retailer.

“These independent stores have their own deep and interesting stories,” Moran said. “(Reg Wilkinson) has a really compelling story and I loved it.”

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Owner Todd Wilkinson said the store always tries to bring Canadian-made products.

“We often try to shop locally and will always take a second look at a Canadian supplier,” he said. “We’re lucky to be here a long time, so why not share the love?”

He first met Moran at the Oakville Booking Show last August and said the watches’ sleek design and interchangeable strap options were attractive features to find in a local product.

“They were kind of a diamond in the rough,” he said. “I was happy to run into them as we are always looking to refresh our jewelry. They generate a lot of interest and are a great gift idea for the upcoming holiday season.

In addition to Locke and King watches, Reg Wilkinson also offers some of its stationery products, including a selection of notebooks and pens.

For more information on Locke and King products, visit www.lockeandking.ca. A limited amount of product is now available for one person in-store at Reg Wilkinson Men’s Wear, 118 Durham Street in downtown Sudbury. To learn more about the story, visit www.regwilkinson.ca.

The Local Journalism Initiative is made possible with funding from the federal government.

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Twitter: @mia_rjensen

Sudbury men's clothing store Reg Wilkinson has had a downtown presence since 1948. PHOTO BY MIA JENSEN/The Sudbury Star
Sudbury men’s clothing store Reg Wilkinson has had a downtown presence since 1948. PHOTO BY MIA JENSEN/The Sudbury Star

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