Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither was the ability of man to choose a wristwatch. Although frequently and sometimes disposable advertised as a fashion item, the humble watch can say and reflect more about your style and taste than many other daily wearables. We may be less than keen as we walk respectfully two steps behind in the supermarket as our spouses enthuse about the coleslaw; but give us the chance to window shop the horological delights in the shopping mall and we will drool indefinitely with gay abandon.
If you don’t own a Cardassian sized accessory area and are particularly keen for style or sentimental reasons to wear the one timepiece lets have a look at some sensible and stylish ways to accessorize the old ticker.
I’ve lost track of the number of times as a lad I’ve watched telly and seen the hero of the hour synchronize his military-style watch before a time when synchronize just meant iTunes backups. The stalwart of the boot and braces watch strap is the NATO version. It surfaced during the 1970s for the military and I can long remember longingly drooling over a NATO issue version complete with basic clockwork watch before Swatch was a twinkle in the Swiss designer’s collective eye.
Traditionally a sturdy nylon band in green or khaki and easy to change out from spring-loaded watch bars, it’s now available in a rainbow of colours that means it’s easy to mix and match with most timepieces and will save damage to the original strap especially if you have a man of action characteristics.
The leather strap is the classic choice being soft, smart calfskin and available in a host of colours these days; but as with the clothing colour wheel and depending what you are wearing at the time, a darker more sophisticated shade of leather strap in either plain or alligator finish may be advisable so as not to detract from the bling of the timepiece itself.
If you don’t want to compromise on style but have ethical considerations, jewellers will fall over themselves to substitute for you leather-like product that won’t offend your beliefs or sensibilities. If you own a high-end watch we’d strongly recommend you to consult your specialist dealer rather than blunder into strap changing yourself and causing unwanted scratches with parts flying akimbo.
Rubber or sometimes-treated silicone straps have been the new darlings of the industry for a while now, being cheap to produce with a maximum eye for profit. A stalwart of divers watches and enthusiasts who only take a dunk in the local pool it’s fine if chunky accessory to the watches that are the size of an escape pod. Again if you own a prestige brand, most manufacturers will have their own take on the designer band and a 10 quid strap will not necessarily perform well for a watch costing hundreds if not thousands of pounds, so don’t skimp if you’re changing the watch strap out whatever the occasion. Think luxury watch and luxe watchstrap and you won’t go far wrong.
The metal bracelet is usually part of the overall design of a classy timepiece, allowing the esthetic line of the watch to flow seamlessly through the strap it’s attached to. The metal has the added attraction of being strong and smart but has the downside of attracting scratches in daily use if you are not careful. A good quality steel bracelet looks great with navy and gold finishes that dinner jacket off nicely. Good metal banded wristwatches have removable links and by getting your friendly jeweller to adjust the band to your wrist you’ll be able to flash the bling like a good un’.