DIY Leather Watch Strap

I’m going to show you in this quick read how to construct a leather watch strap. It’s going to take a little while, so don’t hurry. You’re going to need a few things first.

Step 1: Tools

These would be the materials you’re going to need to make this strap. A few of these tools are made or crafted by hand instead of a tool you can purchase. What I didn’t include in this list is a big leather swatch, a fabric adhesive or an elmer gum and a hole puncher.

Real burnishing tool

Hole Punch

Bevelling Tool

Stitching Groover

Step 2: Initial Strap Cut

Take two leather straps, and make sure that both of them are the same size. Ensure the width is the identical as the separation between the 2 lugs. These are my specifications: 20mm x 22cm. Then bend one band in half, then fold the other one so that one side is about 3cm in length. Fold it over there, then fold this over 3cm. I tightened these to make them contour more, and you’ll see where the bends were. This is going to help in the next stage.

Step 3: Thinning

The next phase is to trim out the leather at the folding points. I used an xacto blade and managed to scrape across, switching directions every now and then. This doesn’t have to be any thinner than the most of the leather, but just enough to make it much easier to roll.

Step 4: Cutting the End

There’s no best way of doing it without a punch, they’re selling it, but I don’t have one. I think the easiest way to do this is to fold a paper in two and cut the way you would like it to look, then track it down on the leather and cut over from there.

This is definitely not the way that premium leather watch bands are made but again this is just a DIY fun home project.

Step 5: Stitching Holes

Here’s where the chisels are going in. Initially, I used my flat chisel connected to the pen cap to create a ridge along the side. Place the pen cap on the side of the leather and place the chisel on the leather. Continue marking the gaps with the sharp chisel or fork on the ridge. To maintain it as even I can, in the last two points I have made, I put the initial two points on the mould. When I get to the curve, I just hold the first point on the chisel at the last point.

Step 6: Inside the Strap

There’s another slice of leather on the inside of the strap. Mine is produced of a particular kind of leather, thicker and sturdier. It can be made of the same leather swatch as the rest of the belt. I positioned the leather, so it was just a little narrower in width than the sewing. Then I set up a piece of leather with a needle poking through the holes. Then I stuck it down with a piece of fabric glue. Standard Elmer’s glue is going to work, just don’t use a lot. You don’t want the glue to make the strap too rigid.

Step 7: Buckle Hole

I calculated how wide and labelled the buckle’s tang. Then I bent over the flap and cut the lines. It was just a trial and an error before I made the buckle turn in the direction I wanted to.

Step 8: Time to Sew!

This is a really simple move. Only go through all the holes to get to the end of it. Just half of the holes can be filled so that they can only go back into each other, and they’ll all be filled. Then tie it off and flame the ends based on the type of thread.

Step 9: Hole Punch

This is a game changing step, it’s hard to distinguish the holes from the same length and all-in line. If you don’t have a hole punch (which I recommend you buy, it’s amazing), I used a little pipe and a hammer first. It’s not as sweet, but it works fine. This is the last move I’ve put the conditioner on at this point, but congrats and enjoy your watch strap.

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