I underestimated how much time I would spend on this watch strap (pun intended) but am so glad to have had the opportunity to challenge myself, sharpen my skills and hopefully even add this as a future product to the shop.
A neighbour needed a new strap for a much loved watch that used to be his godfather's. Its a lovely watch, not that I know anything about watches!... as you will soon find out. The old one's thread had failed putting a strain on the glue holding it together which had given up, leaving some flappy layers of super thin leather that used to resemble a beautiful leather strap. I took it on a little blindly saying I would try my best to make a new one, having never made a watch strap before I then spent the next couple of weeks procrastinating and educating myself on how to do so!
The thing that scared me the most was getting the length or in this case lengths right. See, I hadn't considered that watch straps are typically created with a natural built-in curve. I learnt as soon as I sat down to look at the original properly that the outer or top side of the strap was longer than the inner or underneath side to make this bend. It makes sense in hindsight, if you imagine a flat made watch strap when bent around the wrist the two layers of leather will be working against each other; the top to stretch, and the underneath to bend but restricted by the fixed upper.
Using the original strap I was able to take the off-set measurements of the two lengths to create the curve. I then had to tackle the pin and buckle sections and how to attach the two pieces of leather together. This was achieved by skiving the end of the leather pieces at these sections less than paper thin to then wrap around with the other piece to achieve a thickness of 1 ply. Extremely satisfying, especially with my super lovely handmade skiving knife from Nash Anonymous.
Then I was able to carefully glue everything together, saddle stitch, edge flex the edges and finally return it to its happy owner!
I've already ordered in some buckles and pins to make some straps for the shop. gold and stainless steel in 18mm & 20mm are coming my way and I've currently (Aug 2020) got the Badalassi Pueblo Leather in the brown (as pictured), turquoise, and black. If you would like to pop and order in for a strap of a specific size and colour, please get in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org