Welcome to Strap Check, a new column on Fratello where our editors showcase their favorite watch/strap combinations. We all know the feeling. When you’ve been wearing a watch for weeks on the same strap, there comes a time when the excitement starts to fade a little bit. Maybe that’s the time when you start looking — but looking for what? A brand new watch? Sometimes the answer lies not in the watch, but the strap on which you wear it! From the classic to the unique. From cheap NATOs to bespoke leather and special bracelets. This is where we get excited about perfect combinations that make you feel like you’ve got a brand new watch on your wrist. So tune in every week for a new combination. Are you in a watch rut? Change your strap, and the rest will follow.

Fresh after last week’s The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly-style showdown between the Chronomat, Daytona, and Speedmaster, the Speedy is back for a strap check. Interestingly, I am opposed to removing the bracelet on two of those three chronographs. The Chronomat and Daytona feel so at home with the full force of steel. I’ve never tested alternatives to the Oyster on the Daytona. One time, I put a dark brown leather strap on the Chronomat, which lasted all of two minutes. The reason for the short-term change is down to how well the Rouleaux suits the Chronomat’s case. Yet, no matter what improvements Omega brings to the bracelet game, the Speedmaster is inherently a strap monster at heart.

Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Calibre 3861 The Strap Tailor

Speedmaster on The Strap Tailor

I have a serious penchant for swapping out the Speedmaster bracelet for different straps and aftermarket options, and my recent experience with The Strap Tailor on the Seamaster 300 got me thinking. Suddenly, I had a real hankering to pair one of David’s creations with my Moonwatch. But the inspiration for the design came from something from my past. If you recall, in my Why I Bought… article, I sold my First Omega in Space to fund the new Moonwatch. But I missed the combination of its brown calfskin with the black Speedmaster dial. I took inspiration from the FOIS style and gave my brief to David at The Strap Tailor. But it didn’t stop there. With the Artem Loop-less arriving with the new deployant buckle, I had a leftover Artem fold-over clasp I had bought previously.

So not only did I request a chestnut tan strap with cream stitching to look like the FOIS, but I also wanted it to use an aftermarket buckle. We watch folk sure are picky! David was ever the gentleman but needed some dimensions to ensure it came together. It’s easier said than done, as there’s a lot to consider regarding straps for deployant clasps. Each end has to be the appropriate length to meet in the middle. To account for the extra distance to fold over, the buckle side has to be longer than it would be with the traditional pin buckle. The deployant also forgoes the tang indent and keepers accompanying a regular strap. That way, when attaching to the clasp, the spring bar doesn’t show through the gap where the tang sits. Despite all this complexity, David was able to ascertain all aspects just with shots of the buckle on its own.

Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch Calibre 3861 The Strap Tailor

Strap-change therapy

When the strap arrived, it fit everything perfectly. The spring bar slotted through the buckle end with ease, and the width was exact to connect to the clasp. Quick-release spring bars also make affixing to the case lugs a cinch. All this strap prep work is incredibly therapeutic, but nothing beats finally getting it on the wrist. The Buttero classic padded calfskin with chestnut color feels superb. It’s the right amount of suppleness combined with comfy padding. The cream stitching also complements the vintage tones of the smooth matte leather produced on full grain shoulders by Conceria Walpier in Tuscany. The ability to close the strap with the Artem buckle is an added security bonus and maintains the luster of the strap without creasing it.

I’m delighted with my Speedy Pro on The Strap Tailor calfskin. In the above image, you can see how the sun brings out a solid glow to the leather, but it’s more muted indoors. As this particular strap is made-to-order, prices may vary due to your measurements and preferences. However, on the site, The Strap Tailor offers ready-made Buttero straps in brown with cream stitching on pin buckle for £138. Have you tried these straps before? Click here to find out more.