Anonimo Militare on papaya leather with grey stitching.  © Richard Beard

FAQs

Below is a list of answers to frequently asked questions. This page is regularly updated, and should answer all of your questions, but if there is anything else you need to know, please contact me by email.

Are all your straps made by hand?

Yes, completely. In my opinion there is no substitute for a quality hand made, hand stitched watch strap. There are no machines used – each and every one of my straps is built totally by hand.

How thick are your straps?

This depends entirely on the thickness of the particular leather used, but generally my straps are around 4mm thick. For me this thickness is just about perfect for a big watch. You’ll see on the leather pages a statement of how thick the straps made from that leather will be.

What strap widths can you provide?

All my straps are parallel widths, but because all my straps are handmade I can provide any width you like, however I only have buckles in 18mm, 20mm, 22mm, 24mm and 26mm. If you want a different width strap I can make it, but you will need to source a buckle for it yourself.

Do you make tapered straps?

No, all my straps are parallel widths. If you choose a 24mm wide strap it will therefore be 24mm parallel. My straps do not taper.

Is there a “standard” strap option?

There are obviously many ways your strap can be customised, but unless requested otherwise your strap will come with a pointed tail, open stitching and a single floating keeper.

Do your straps come with a buckle?

I include a spring bar buckle free with every strap, but you can upgrade to a sewn in buckle or screw bar buckle when you order (depending on availability). All the buckles available can be seen on the buckles page.

Can you box stitch a strap for me?

Unless you notify me at the time of ordering I will stitch the strap open (i.e. just down the sides of the strap), but I can also stitch it closed (i.e. stitch across the width of the strap at the lugs), or boxed (i.e. with a box at the lug end) for you if you wish. If you prefer closed or boxed stitching please make sure you let me know when you order by mentioning this in the “order notes” field on the checkout page. If you’re unsure what I mean by open, closed & boxed stitching take a look here.

Can you make me a strap with a sewn in keeper?

Yes, of course. My straps come with one wide floating keeper as standard, but if you want a second floating keeper or a fixed keeper as well I can do that. Make sure you mention this in the “order notes” field on the checkout page.

I can see your straps have a variety of strap cuts. Which will I get?

Unless requested otherwise, your strap will be cut with a pointed tail. If you want a square folded tail on your strap (not available with all leathers) as shown in some of the photographs please be sure to include this in “order notes” on the checkout page.

How many holes are punched in a strap?

This depends on the length of the strap, but in general I will punch 7 holes spaced approx. 7mm apart (in short straps it will be 6 holes to avoid punching too close to the end of the strap).

Can I swim wearing a Toshi Strap?

Leather is naturally a porus material, and although I do wax and oil my straps during the manufacturing process I do not consider them to be waterproof. I advise against getting my straps wet, and certainly would suggest swimming or showering while wearing a strap is not a good idea.

What buckles can you offer?

I carry a stock of buckles in various styles and finishes. These buckles come either as spring bar buckles, screw bar buckles or sewn in buckles in 18mm, 20mm, 22mm, 24mm & 26mm widths. You need to take a look at the buckles page to see the options, as some buckles are not available in all widths.

Do your straps come with tubes?

Unless requested Toshi Straps will not have tubes fitted. I do stock tubes for 22mm, 24mm and 26mm straps however, so if you want me to fit them to your strap please be sure to mention this in the “order notes” field on the checkout page when ordering. There will be no additional charge made if you request tubes fitted to your strap, but please be aware that tubes are only recommended when the strap is to be worn on a Panerai Luminor watch.

I have a watch with fixed bars. Can you make a strap for it?

I can do this if there is a minimum of 2mm clearance between the lugs and the case, but for obvious reasons I would need to have the watch here to build the strap around it. Email me with the details of the watch (type / lug width / leather choice) and I will reply with a quote and estimate of how long it will take.

My watch has very little clearance between the spring bar and watch case. Will one of your straps fit?

I normally shave the thickness of the leather to around 1.2mm at the lugs so my straps will fit most watches, however some watches are well known for having little clearance for straps (eg. Anonimo). If you are concerned please let me know when you order and I can thin the leather more than I would normally when I build your strap.

Do you sign your straps?

Yes, my logo will usually be stamped onto the back of the strap you receive from me. In the past I’ve been asked to stamp the strap on the front, and I will do this if asked, but it will be stamped on the back unless requested otherwise. Some leathers will not be stamped as they won’t accept the imprint to my satisfaction.

What size strap will I need?

Correctly sizing a strap is not as complicated as it might seem, and is explained on the strap measurements page. This shows what information I need when you place an order, but feel free to email me if you want me to help.

Do you have any leather or threads that are not shown on the website?

No. All my leather and thread stocks are shown on this website. The leathers I use do change occasionally, but when they do I update the site very quickly.

Will your straps fit my deployant buckle?

My straps are made to be used with a traditional buckle, and so I don’t hold deployant clasps in stock. If you want a deployant on one of my straps please be aware that my straps are parallel and around 4mm thick (depending on leather selected), so you will need to source a deployant that can take that width & thickness of strap.

How much do your straps cost?

The prices vary depending on the leather chosen, so you’ll need to go to the straps page and click through to see the costs for each type of leather I have on offer. The basic cost of a strap includes a free spring bar buckle, but if you prefer you can upgrade to a sewn in or screw bar buckle when you order.

How can I order a strap?

A full explanation of the order process can be seen on the how to order page. If you are confused by any of the choices you have to make then by all means email me and I will do my best to help. Once an order is received I will confirm everything back to you by email before starting work on your strap, so if there are any aspects of your order I think need clarification we can discuss them at that time. Please note – I only schedule the build of your strap/s once payment has been received.

What payment methods do you accept?

My preferred method of payment is PayPal or credit card, but I do also accept payment by bank transfer and cheque if you have a UK bank account.

I don’t have a PayPal account – how can I order and pay using my credit card?

You don’t need an account with PayPal to pay with your credit card. When you put your order through you will see “PayPal or credit card” listed as the default payment option on the checkout page. If this is selected, once you submit your order you will be re-directed to a log in page on PayPal’s website, but there is an option to pay without logging in to PayPal. If you select this option you will be asked for credit card details to pay for your order – PayPal handle the transaction for me but you do not need to register with them to make payment.

How long will it be before you can ship my strap?

The lead time varies depending on how busy I am when you order but expect it to be about four to five weeks from the time I receive your payment before I post. I will always give you a firm dispatch date when I receive your payment however, and I take responsibility for making sure I post your strap on that date.

Where do you ship? What charge is their for shipment?

I ship anywhere in the world and postage is free of charge. When I ship your strap I will email you to let you know, and if you are not in the UK I will give you the tracking number of the package at that time.

What services do you use for shipping?

I use Royal Mail to ship my straps to you. If you are in the UK your strap will be sent using Royal Mail Recorded Signed For. If you are outside the UK I will use Royal Mail International Signed For to get your strap to you. Both these services will require a signature on delivery, and allow me to insure against loss. I am happy to upgrade your shipping to a service of your choice but I would expect you to pay any difference in cost if this is required. If you do want to upgrade shipping please request this in “order notes” on the checkout page when you place your order.

How do I look after my Toshi Strap?

It sounds obvious, but cleaning the strap regularly will help to keep your strap in optimum condition. Sweat and dirt will eventually cause the strap to deteriorate, so a regular wipe with a clean, dry (or slightly damp) cotton cloth is recommended. If you intend to buy a specialised cleaning product you would be advised to avoid any that will strip the natural oils from the leather. Also, a leather cleaner should not leave an oily residue (which can make the strap susceptible to bacteria and can break down the stitching). A leather conditioner is something that should be used only occasionally. Conditioners contain fats and oils to help replenish the leather, but I avoid any containing petroleum or mineral oils as these ingredients will damage the leather in the longer term. It is always a good idea to test the cleaner / conditioner on a small area at the back of the strap first – many products can change the colour of the leather. One more point to mention – please remember that leather is a natural material and should never be stored in plastic (because it encourages the growth of mildew and bacteria and can damage the leather).

Do you have any pre-made straps that can ship immediately?

No, my straps are bespoke and so I only work to order. I know it can be frustrating having to wait for your strap, but I will make the wait as short as possible and I am confident you will be delighted with the strap when it arrives.

I notice you photograph your straps with various watches. Does this mean your straps are endorsed by these watch manufacturers?

No. All the watches you see on this website either belong to customers of mine who have kindly sent pictures to me of my straps on their watch, or my own watches from my collection. The fact I use these to showcase my work is not meant to give the impression that my watch straps are endorsed by any manufacturer whose watches are featured.

Are you a watch collector yourself?

Yes, absolutely. I’ve been a collector of watches for a few years now and I seem to live & breathe watches. It’s a sickness, but I’m learning to live with it! LOL :)