How to make leather watch straps (with pictures)
- December 21, 2018
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Isn’t it way too cool to have a leather watch on your wrist? Today we will show you how to make your own watch straps from real leather. This will take a while so make your seat comfortable and let’s get into this 🙂
There are some tools that you will need to get things done
Let’s move on to the action.
The width of your leather watch straps should be based on the watch you want to put it on and/or your donor strap.
Cutting the leather out to size:
Now you’ve got 2 main pieces for the straps. you will need to cut out more little thin pieces with same length of main straps to pad inside. This will make the band look nicer and stiffer as well as keeping them in good shape. 02 shorter ones as the straps loop and another 02 leather pieces that are bigger than your main straps for the back side of the band. Glue them with contact cement
It is essential to trim the edge of the pad in order to make it smooth when you place the bigger leather pieces on the straps to cover the center mold. When you fold the leather, it won’t be too thick, which only make it hideous and uncomfortable to wear so use xacto knife to sand it out lightly. Skiving the ends of the straps
Ok! You’re doing a great job! Next up, switch to the bigger pieces. Use your pen to mark out the place to fold. Around 1-1.5 centimes from the border
The next step is to thin out the leather at the fold points. I used an xacto knife and scraped back an forth switching direction once in a while. if it isn’t thinned down it would be too bulky but It doesn’t need to be drastically thinner than the rest of the leather but just enough to make it fold easier.
All done skiving. If done properly, the thickness of the folded end (double layer) should be about equivalent to the normal thickness of a single layer of the leather.
Use the bone folder to rub the leather piece, you will see the center mold gradually showing through
Making straps loop
With 02 thin leather pieces, you’re ready to make the strap loops. Take a note that you should place one strap on another then wrap a thin leather around them to measure the length of the loop. This should not be too tight nor too loose. Make sure that it still has a little space so that the loop can move along the strap to adjust while using. Remember to skive both ends so that it won’t be bulked up where they’re folded onto each other when creating the loop. You’ll want it to be roughly half the thickness of the rest of the strap. Same like you have done in earlier step with the main straps. Be careful not to ripe it!
Ok! Move on to the next section: Preparing for leather sewing
Punch Holes For Stitching Around
This is where the chisels and hammer come in. According to the line you just made in previous step, let’s punch some holes along the edge to prepare for next step. The holes come out clean and consistent, and the slightly larger holes make sewing a breeze. The chisels also come in several different spacings and sizes so you will need to decide which one suits your leather watch straps most. . You can use an awl and hammer or a hole punch also works
After finishing punching holes, dying the color favorite color to your watch straps is optional. I used light brown for mine and it should be dyed before being stitched.
This is a fairly easy step. Just go through each of the holes and once you get to the end. Then just tie it off and depending on the type of thread burn the ends
Burnishing the edges is essentially polishing them. It not only creates a smooth finished edge, it also protects the leather and will make it last much longer.
This is the last step, I put the conditioner on it at this stage but congratulations and enjoy your watch strap. The true beauty of this strap will develop over time as a patina evolves.
If you planning to visit Hoi An, Blue Lotus leather handmade workshop is the best place to visit and we provide the best experience to do when you are here even if you have experienced working with leather before or not. Best way to craft your real leather goods from scratch (design patterns, cut leather, do punch holes, hand-sew and personalize). We’re always here to help you design what best fits your needs.
So don’t hesitate to join us for a fun workshop in Hoi An. Good vibes, good music, best coffee in town included 😉
Address: 98 Hung Vuong, Hoi An, Vietnam
Hotline: + 84 916-183-279