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As a struggling minimalist, not collecting anything is ideal, but value-appreciating watches might be the best choice if you are going to. As I start accumulating watches, I could no longer suppress my urge to organize the hell out of them.
I went through hundreds of examples and tutorials on how to best do so, till I finally found the one that resonates with me best—using a Pelican case based on this post.
I followed the instructions quite closely, but am going to provide insights from going through it myself.
1. Get a Pelican Case
The right size of case depends on how many watches you want to fit into it. Pelican cases come with pluck-and-pull foam that you can pull out to put your watches in.
The instruction specifies that that each watch will take up a 2×5 cube space and they need to be 2-cube space apart. I found that this will work with virtually any size of watch you have. The Pelican 1500 Case will fit exactly three rows of eight watches.
It's best if you are able to go down to a store yourself and see how many cubes of foam it comes with, calculate according to the above, and then buy it for a cheaper price online.
I managed to find a Pelican 1500 Case on Amazon that was a little cheaper due to the beat-up packaging and pulled the trigger.
2. Decide your layout with the help of toothpicks
Using toothpicks, mark out the four corners of each hole you will cut out. Be careful to not stab the toothpick into the foam itself or it will result in unsightly holes. It's easier if you pull the cubes slightly apart before doing so.
I didn't have many toothpicks lying around, but managed to scavenge a few from disposable chopsticks packs that come with bentos.
I confirmed the corners length-wise, and then move the toothpicks width-wise, since I didn't have enough. If you carefully count the cubes before counting, you could probably get away with doing this.
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3. Cut the holes
Once you are sure, start cutting the first one.
Use a knife and push it from one of the corner. If you feel something halfway through, don't force your knife all the way down as it might cut into the walls. The cubes are actually meant to be pulled apart, so this might also happen if your knife is too sharp.
Separate it slowly and deliberately all around. Once the walls are separated, I like to stick my finger in and slowly separate it from the wall by pull it apart.
Do not try to pull the foam out until you know that you've cleanly separate it from the surrounding walls. If you pull it and feel resistance, just stick your fingers around it and feel where it is stuck. You should be able to pull it out relatively easy if you've done it right.
Don't expect perfection here. It's impossible no matter how slow you go. When you put the watches in, it won't matter.
4. Cut the pull-out foam
Start by cutting about one-third of it from the bottom part. It'll be easy to know the bottom because the edges will be rougher due to it being torn from the walls.
I tried it with a pocket knife, and then a pen knife. I found that the best tool for this is a kitchen knife. You simply saw through it to get straight cuts.
Strap your watch around the two-thirds and see if you can close the strap at the loosest setting.
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If it doesn't close, cut it some more, but you shouldn't have to cut it more than half the original size. Try putting it into the case each time.
Keep the one-third part you cut to measure it against the other pieces so you have consistent sizes.
5. Rinse and repeat
Repeat the steps. The instructions did it for all 24 holes, but I chose to do it just for all the watches I have, minus one that will be worn regularly. I know I will be tempted to buy more out of the impulse to fill up the holes.
6. Sit back and enjoy your handiwork
Take some time to enjoy your work. You have permission to take photos to show it off.
6. Extra: Add a dessicant
You might want to pick up these Dry-Packs Desiccant from Amazon. Pelican offers the same type on their online store, but these ones from Amazon are basically the same at less than half the price.
Unlike one-time use desiccants, you can put these in the oven to reactivate the desiccant. I recommend getting a few so that you can reactivate them all at once since it takes 3 hours in the oven to do so.
I'm sorry because now you'll be hating me for helping you spend more on watches. This is the best organization I've seen for watches up to now. Let me know if you have seen better ones.
Tagged organization pelican case watch