Ever Wanted a Piece of Your Favorite MLB Team?
Written By: Kristin Kellams Original Grain
Whether you are just the average working person or someone seeking adventure through mother nature’s finest, Original Grain has a watch for you. They don’t just sell the average stainless steel and leather watches—they have state-of-the-art exotic, woodgrain watches. These watches are definitely conversation pieces as each one contains a different kind of wood from around the world that can date back to hundreds of years—no two watches are the same and each one tells a different story.
The brains behind this brilliant and unique idea come from two Oregon-native brothers, Andrew and Ryan Beltran, who now reside in San Diego. Andrew and Ryan launched Original Grain back in 2013 through Kickstarter and raised almost $400,000 in just 30 days. “We wanted to create a timepiece that was a representation of where we grew up in the Pacific Northwest,” Andrew says.
“Andrew and I were raised with an adventurous mindset, always in and around nature. So, when I decided to create a branded product, the first element I thought to incorporate was wood,” says Ryan.
There are six different watch collections to choose from—Alterra Chrono, Barrel, Classic, Minimalist, MLB Series and Brewmaster. Each watch is craftily made with different kinds of wood from Kentucky, German Oak beer barrels, Indonesia and different parts of Africa. “One of my favorite watches is the Whiskey Barrel—this watch is crafted from reclaimed whiskey barrels,” Andrew says. “This concept is what triggered us to continue making collections that were reclaimed. Each watch can tell its own story of where it’s from and the depth it holds.”
When picking out a watch on the Original Grain website, there is information provided that tells you where the wood came from. This is where your own imagination can take flight and you can see a story unfold as to where the wood came from. The quality and look of each watch ooze suave style and fashion, while maintaining a very classy and modern look on the wrist.
The MLB Series collection seems by far the most unique, as they are a limited edition collection. Original Grain has made these timepieces with reclaimed 1923 New York Yankee Stadium and Wrigley Field wooden seats. Only 2,008 limited edition pieces were made of the Yankee style and 2,016 were made of the Wrigley style.
“The MLB watches all came about when we decided to make a special one-off for an investor. He’s a huge Yankees fan and we thought it would be cool to use an element from the Original Yankee Stadium,” Ryan says.
The Yankees watch shows off its black and blue hues, and if you look closely behind the glass you can practically see the Yankees batting their way into history. The Wrigley’s edition features a blue face with a green bezel inlay and a stainless steel band. This watch honors the sacrifices made by Cubs fans, past and present, and celebrates the Cubs 2016 World Championship. Andrew explains that they came up with the idea for these one-of-a-kind pieces as a birthday present for one of their primary investors, James Brennan.
“As soon as he got this he said this is an instant family heirloom and told us stories about all the ball games he went to at the Original Yankee Stadium,” Andrew states. “The connection that was made on an emotional level was something that inspires us daily to create new styles and designs. We then went to work on finding the supply to create a collection of watches and worked directly with the MLB and Yankee/Cubs Organization to create this once in a lifetime collection. A dream come true. I always wanted to be a Yankee—at least now I am affiliated!”
While the watches themselves change the way we look at the industry as a whole, Andrew and Ryan are helping to change the environment with their brand. Original Grain has teamed up with the organization Trees for the Future, which helps to alleviate hunger and poverty in Senegal, Africa. “As kids, Ryan and I spent all our time outdoors. We draw our inspiration from being in nature and being in the wild. Us giving back to an amazing forestry program was something we were destined to do,” Andrew explains. “Not only are trees planted but we are teaching kids how to use their natural resources and preserve their environment. This charity is near and dear to our brand and what we stand for.” For every watch that Original Grain sells, they contribute to the organization by planting 10 trees. Planting these trees helps to provide a more sustainable food source and income for the families in Africa. When you buy a watch you are not just buying a piece of fashion, but you are helping both the environment and families in Senegal.
As for the future of these wood grain and steel watches, Andrew says that they are currently working on creating gift sets. “Not only are the customers receiving a custom handmade watch, but we’ve created custom kits where the brewmaster and soon to come whiskey will be paired with certain elements to gain the full experience. For example, the brewmaster comes with an extra beer stein, speed opener and a lapel pendent. This gives the consumer the full effect and culture we have created here at Original Grain,” he says.
Handcrafted Watches Made From Reclaimed Whiskey Barrels? Yes, Please