Shell Cordovan is slowly invading into my life. What started with a bracelet, I now own a cordovan wallet, keychain and today a watch strap.
The linen bags that came out of the envelope reeked of the peculiar smell that is shell cordovan. It is not a bad thing. I tossed the envelope aside and placed the linen bags down.
The strap that slid out of the bag was wonderfully heavy compared to the nylon ones that I’m most familiar with. The front portion of the strap holds the same shine you see in Alden boots. This makes things a little hard to photograph so I apologize in advance. I guess I could have placed it all inside a white box, but what’s the fun in looking at product in white void?
The back of the strap contains a stamped company logo. I like the logos on my stuff small and unobtrusive, and DaLuca has done exactly that.
My Marathon GSAR looks a lot better with this strap on than with the Dubstraps Selvedge NATO strap. The strap might look even better with a Submariner… anyone care to loan one to me to check?
The saddle stitching is hand-done by Daniel Luczak, the owner of DaLuca Straps. Based in San Diego, Daniel started the company around two and a half years ago with strap offerings for Panerai watches. Daniel has added wallets, belts, camera straps and other leather goods into the mix.
I was worried that the beefy Horween shell cordovan would make the strap unnecessarily chunky where the material bunches back in on the top rings, but the concern was unwarranted. Sure there was more material at the end of the strap, but I find that it added to the aesthetics rather than detract from it. The black hardware is a nice touch too. Other shell cordovan NATO bands on the market only offer matte steel, but DaLuca puts out both matte and black PVD.
The strap sits comfortably on my puny 6 1/2 inch wrist. I’ll take some wear pictures when the sky isn’t shitting lightning.
The only real concern I would have for the strap is at the weak point of the strap, the stitching. Not to say that Mr. Luczak’s stitching is off (far from it), but that the top ring where the leather first passes through is secured by a single set of stitching. If that spot manages to tear, you would lose the single point that holds the strap together. This is a minor concern since the strap is shell cordovan leather. It would take a lot of abuse to get shell cordovan to fall apart. The danger of losing your watch is very minimal due to the nature of NATO bands. The method of doubling back the extra material keeps the watch securely on your wrist even in the event of a strap failure. The only setback with a strap failure would be the time it would take to send the strap back to Daniel Luczak. He will personally answer your e-mail and make any issue right.
DaLuca NATO strap in Horween’s shell cordovan in color #8 with black PVD hardware, along with a black Maratac Zulu band (the old standby) and a Dubstraps Selvedge NATO strap.
The second linen bag held a small snap wallet in black shell cordovan. This is also saddle stitched by Mr. Luczak’s hands. Made in America goodness.
As I’ve said earlier, I like my logos small and unobtrusive, but I find myself drawn to this logo. The contrast in colors and texture of the logo makes it a nice addition to the rear of the wallet. I also hold a weird fascination to double headed raptor motifs, so the DaLuca logo appeals to me.
The wallet is minimalist, consisting of a single pocket interior held closed by a snap buckle. In order to fit money into the wallet you would have to do a double fold. I crammed 10 bills and a challenge coin into the wallet and it fit with room to spare.
Credit cards and the like fits this wallet without an issue. DaLuca also makes a bigger version of this as well as a bifold.
Overall the products are well crafted and fantastic. They’re set at a reasonable price considering its material and Handmade in America status. It’s also good to know that the owner will stand behind the product he crafted his own hands. I know who to talk to when I get another watch.
If you hop over to Daniel’s page, be sure to check out his section on retired straps!