How to Choose a Watch Band: Determining Thickness
Many people begin a search to upgrade their watch straps because they don’t like the standard stock bands. You may think it is just as simple as hopping online, finding your size, and clicking “order”. However the more you search, you will realize there are many small details and aspects that you may not have thought of before. For this reason, we have created a series that will help answer some common questions we receive from people seeking strap recommendations. This post will touch on some aspects to think about when deciding on how much padding works for you!
1. Consider your Case and Lug Size
When deciding on what type of thickness you would like to have in your band, you will need to take the size of your case as well as the size + placement of the lugs into consideration. A large band on small lugs or a shallow case will look too overpowering, and the same effect will happen if your lugs + case is large. Because of this, the strap you choose may look out of place. A good way to determine this is to eyeball it with an old strap or break out a ruler and measure. This is ideal if you are ordering a new band online (we include all dimensions in each product listing!).
An easy way to remember is to make sure the strap is the same thickness as the lugs, and no thicker than the case. For example, you may not want to pair our 6mm Gentlemen’s Collection band with a Daniel Wellington case.
2. Take Note of the Style of Your Lugs
While this might seem obvious, it is a step that is often forgotten. Sometimes, it can be very easy to choose a band solely based on color and material, and forget to factor in if will be the most effective choice for your watch. Like the first picture shown, this second image contains the same two band collections (the 4mm thick Dapper Collection and the 6mm Gentlemen’s Collection). However, because this watch has different lugs than the watch in the first image, the second watch is unable to lay flat on the table because the Gentlemen’s Collection strap is too thick to allow it.
Because this style of watch has the lugs embedded into the case rather than extending out, the thicker straps cannot bend as freely as the thinner Dapper Collection Strap. Even though they are the same size and made from the same materials, the amount of padding in the band really matters with this style
NOTE: Not all Padding is Equal
Each leather collection includes different padding options with the same materials. Don’t feel like you need to sacrifice the look of a thickly-padded band with side stitching, based on the above steps. In fact, we offer bands that have the padding style of our large Gentlemen’s Collection but can accommodate smaller watches! Examples of these are our Rally bands (4mm) or our Croco bands (4mm / see image below)
3. Decide on what Impression you want to Give
Now that you have finally determined what types of straps will work best with your watch, you should consider the style of the watch itself. Does your collection include vintage pieces, timeless brands, or modern and minimalistic themes? Are you buying a strap for casual wear or are you looking for dressier options? Many people we have talked with prefer thickly padded bands when it comes to a more formal look, or pairing with vintage watches. However, at this point, it just comes down to personal preference.
Another option to think about is what is your reasoning behind desiring a new band. Are you looking for something for a last-minute formal event or something long-term for daily wear? We recommend that all our padded bands with side stitching allow a break-in time of at least 2 weeks of constant wear. This is recommended for most genuine leather goods. Our bands without side stitching (such as our Dapper Collection) have little to no break-in time.
A final deciding factor for some (especially for watch collectors with higher-end pieces) is the strength of the glue used. Often times we see collectors steer in the direction of very thickly-padded bands due to the stitching along the sites. Often this helps ensure the top flap of leather which holds the pins is secure, and will not wear off over time. This detail could cause your watch to unexpectantly fall from your wrist. With this in mind, we are proud to say that you do not need to worry about this from us. With our Dapper Collection, for example, we still include stitching near the pins rather than relying solely on the glue.
Overall, we hope these tips help guide you in your overall search for a leather band that is perfectly suited for you and your collection. Feel free to share if you prefer thick or thin bands (or both) and why!