VintageWatchstraps Logo

Vintage Watch Straps

Straps for vintage fixed wire lug trench or officer's wristwatches.



Blog: Italian leather, gold buckles

Date: 1 September 2016

Copyright © David Boettcher 2006 - 2017 all rights reserved.

I make additions and corrections to this web site frequently, but because they are buried somewhere on one of the pages the changes are not very noticeable, so I decided to create this blog section to highlight new material. Here below you will find part of one of the pages that I have recently either changed or added to significantly.

I have added some premium Italian leathers and hand made nine carat gold buckles to my range so I thought that I would highlight these here in case anyone thinks that my range never changes. Details of my full range of leathers can be found at Leather types and colours. Details of my hand made sterling silver and gold buckles, and how to order straps with these, can be found at Sterling silver and gold buckles.

If you have any comments or questions, please don't hesitate to contact me via my Contact me page.


Premium Italian leathers


Brandy and dark chestnut Italian leathers: click image to enlarge

I am always searching for suitable leathers but I have had difficulty finding suitable leathers in the quality that I want and the thickness that I need for making straps the traditional way. After a lot of searching I found these beautiful Italian leathers which are superb quality and colours. They are not available from any British supplier so import them myself.

I have two colours available, brandy and dark chestnut. The brandy is the lighter of the two. This photograph shows Type B and Type A straps in brandy and dark chestnut, both with my hand made sterling silver buckles, with the background samples of the hides, to give you a different view of the two colours.

All the straps in the picture are made with stitching that closely matches the colour of the leather. Contrast stitching can be done to special order, and the brandy looks particularly good with black stitching, which I think gives a real smart and sophisticated look.

The colour can vary across each hide, and it is always difficult to get a good colour representation on a computer monitor, but these are high quality leathers with beautiful rich colours.

These are premium leathers, the best I have ever seen, butter soft and lovely to feel. They are much more expensive than the standard leathers so I have to charge an extra £2.00 for straps made from these premium Italian leathers.

There are pictures of customers watches on straps made in these leathers on the customers page.

I keep some straps made up in these Italian leathers with standard buckles, which you can order at Ordering straps with standard buckles. I also keep some straps made up in these Italian leathers with sterling silver buckles, which you can order at Sterling silver and gold buckles. If you want to order one of my designs of straps in these Italian leathers with a 12mm nine carat gold buckle, please email me with the details and where you live (just the country, for the postage) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to place the order.



Hallmarked Type GW gold buckle

Gold buckles

I have made some of my Type GW buckles in nine carat gold, the picture here shows one of them. They are the same design as my Type GW sterling silver buckles and are hallmarked at the London Assay Office with a full set of traditional hallmarks, including the sign of a crown for gold instead of the lion of sterling silver.

I intend to keep in stock nine carat gold buckles in 12mm width, i.e. to fit 12mm straps. Any of my vintage watchstrap designs can be made up in any of the leather types and colours that I carry. If you want to order one of my designs of straps with a gold buckle, please email me with the details and where you live (just the country, for the postage) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to place the order.

Original gold buckles that I have seen have always been small in both overall size and wire diameter compared to my Type GW design. I think this was done to keep the cost down but they look a bit wimpy on a man's strap. I prefer my Type GW design made in 2.0mm wire as shown here, which makes the buckle about four times the weight of an original and increases the cost of the gold proportionately. But I always think that if you are going to bother doing something, you might as well do it right.

One of my designs of strap with one of my hand made, London hallmarked, 12mm Type GW nine carat gold buckles is £120 plus p&p. Other sizes can be made to order. The extra cost of gold adds £5 for each extra 2mm of width, e.g. a strap with a 14mm nine carat buckle is £125.

Because of the high cost of gold bullion compared to silver (about 25 times as much) I do not always have gold buckles in stock. If you are interested, send me an email.

Customer reactions


Gold buckles on brown Montana leather: click image to enlarge

The first three gold buckles that I made were for a Danish collector. They are shown in the photograph here on straps made up in dark brown Montana grain leather.

When the potential order was discussed I contemplated making the buckles in 1.5mm wire because of the cost of gold, to keep down the cost. However, I said to the customer that I thought that to look right on a man's watch the gold buckles would have to be the same size as my sterling silver buckles, and made of 2.0mm thick gold wire. Happily the customer agreed and the buckles in the picture are the result. The customer was pleased with the outcome, telling me:

Hi David, I received the watch straps with the 9 carat buckles Friday afternoon. The buckles looks really great, excellent craftsmanship. I love the way the hallmarks are made on the buckles! And yes, this is really the right size of a buckle on a mans watch strap! I am more than pleased ! Thank you ! Best regards Jens


Gold buckle on Type C double slot, Italian brandy leather: click image to enlarge

The second customer for one of my hand made and London hallmarked gold buckles was a collector in the Netherlands. He wanted a strap with a gold buckle to go with his gold Angora Watch Company wristwatch with hermetic case made by Borgel.

The resulting strap is shown in the photograph here fitted to the watch. I am happy to say that this customer was also pleased with the outcome, telling me:

Hi David!
Do I think the strap is beautifull?
I think it is magnificent!!!
Kind Regards, Bart

If you want to order one of my designs of straps with a gold buckle, please email me with the details and where you live (just the country, for the postage) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to place the order.


If you have any questions or comments, please don't hesitate to contact me via my Contact me page. Back to the top of the page.

Copyright © David Boettcher 2006 - 2017 all rights reserved. This page updated November 2017. W3CMVS.