Special woven watch bands
Most of us have met watch enthusiasts over the years. They may have been well-heeled relatives at first, then colleagues and friends as we mature. How about you? What got you into this world of horology?
I didn’t used to like wearing watches. As a young architect, I spent an obscene number of hours drawing and working out minutes and contracts on the desk. To scrub the tabletop while typing and to use the mouse with a buckle under my wrist were some of the most uncomfortable things in the world. One day, after working for many years, my wife said, “Why don’t you buy yourself a serious watch?” That was the entrance to the rabbit hole of buying watches and watch straps.
These were some of the purchases I found myself wearing more than others. Of course, they were mostly woven fabric watch bands because in the hot and humid climate, perspiration remains on the steel bracelets and rubber watch bands. leather absorbs the perspiration unless they are lined with water proofing materials which we also have researched recently. So, this was the ‘best of’ selections from the past. These could be washed in due time except for the padded sail cloth strap.
I started to wonder at the limited variety of woven watch straps. So began my insatiable hunt for the most unique straps. One would think it would take forever to find all the varieties in the world, but woven watch straps are almost completely dominated by mega factories.
My colleagues and I made this discovery when we found only a handful of fabric watch straps online that were originally designed. We’re quite certain the other 95% are resellers. Watch straps were designed and produced by factories, and then made their way into a huge distribution network. They are also all priced similarly with marginal differences in weave and texture. Only giants are in the game, we realized.
Ironically, we have now become their source of inspiration for design!
Besides the mass-produced standard ones, the following are well made and interesting fabric watch straps from the best-known luxury watch brands:
Tudor nato style watch strap
The weaves and finishings are stunning.
Jaeger-LeCoultre Casa Casa Fagliano Strap made of canvas and calf skin.
Perfect for the Reverso
Monblanc’s 1858 Geosphere
Stunning, unique woven strap making it an amazing field watch nato strap.
Omega’s 007 Poly amide nato strap. 007 nato version.
While the weaves are not out of the ordinary, the colors, quality and durability sets itself apart.
Blancpain’s Fifty Fathoms with a very tightly woven, synthetic fabric watch band.
Notice they have made the keeper in fabric as well but in a different texture.
To give you a flavor of how we go about testing our fabric straps and weaves, the above are some of the past and on-going prototypes we are working on. (only the tip of the iceberg!)
The top strap labelled No. 1 was initially abandoned, only to be later developed into the current X Hatch because the texture and malleability was really pleasant and special. The texture grips well, thus the strap would take on the shape of the object it is wrapping and stay in position for a good while. The issue was we did not find the cross pattern too suitable. That would have been our fourth prototype before the X hatch was launched.
The final X strap paired with the neo-vintage Omega Seamaster. You can see the weaves are extremely high in density. To see the colors and sizes available, please use this link:
Strap No. 2 was in fact the first design we developed with the intent to make it available for other watch enthusiasts. Did you know that the interesting herringbone weave was inspired from WWII military-issued uniforms? Have a look at our range and description:
We further developed prototype No. 3 to have a finished surface on both sides such that you get to choose either side to pair with your watch. Although each silk strand is thinner than human hair, each one has, pound for pound, similar or stronger tensile strength than many types of steel.
Do you believe that a luxury watch strap equates to crocodile straps only? What defines luxury when it comes to a watch strap? We are glad that many major brands are looking into developing sophisticated fabric watch straps as seen in references above. Have a read about what drove us to develop this product:
For test strap No. 4, we thought the centre stripe too wide and refined it to a tiny gilt stripe. How many of us have watches with gilt dials or indices? They work so well with these soft, quality watch straps. These straps come in three differently finished hardware for your pick:
The 5th sample we studied was developed into a vintage styled watch strap. Not all collectors like them pristine and spanking new. Some of us love vintages with patina and faded surfaces. We developed this vintage strap to match many vintages out there. After @roadking1102 saw some samples, he insisted that we had to release this design, assuring us that many would take to these vintage two-piece straps made of polycotton and fitted with distressed hardware.
For the vintage 2 piece with distressed hardware
For the vintage single pass option
We have not given up on camouflage. In fact, we’re closing in and should be able to complete production by September this year. Wish us luck and buy these uniquely designed watch straps so you can propel us to create more interesting designs for you.