I remember when I was looking for my first custom strap like it was yesterday. I would scour the internet and search forums and see a ton of straps out there that all looked the same. I didn’t use Instagram that much but thank god I found it and use it more because I have found some of the most amazing strap makers through that platform. Another great find for me through Instagram was Vissuto Straps. I had my initial conversations with Maikel back in January of this year and we had some good dialogue back and forth. He sent me pictures of the current stock of gator skins and I was in love with his color selection right off the bat. I wanted to get something that was a little outside the box and I selected this interesting blue colored skin. Due to high demand on his straps he mentioned that it would take a month or more to get the strap out to me which I was fine with. He made it very clear that he does not like to stress his staff out because quality is of top importance and when employees are stressed to finish things quickly mistakes happens. I waited patiently like a child on Christmas Eve to get my present from Vissuto Straps and I can truly say the wait was worth it.
As with any strap the first thing I believe you will notice from a far is the color of this gorgeous strap. This Vissuto strap color was actually selected by my wife and it was a perfect choice. It’s a beautiful dark teal blue alligator strap with an amazing texture from top to bottom. I opted to have this be 24×24 for the width instead of the 24×22 tapered look of OEM. For some reason I am not the biggest fan of the tapered straps on the 24mm models such as the 312 because I feel it doesn’t look right. That’s just my humble opinion and I know a lot of people do love the OEM alligator straps.
The actual pattern on the strap is truly amazing, starting with the larger scales near the lugs and getting smaller as you reach the tail end of the strap. On the buckle side of the strap the pattern is very much like the tail side near the lugs, with larger scales.
The edges of the beautiful blue scales have a darker finish to them that gives the strap an awesome contrast and depth. This is something that is very noticeable when you take a look at the keepers, which have more of a round gator texture as seen in the pictures below. Exactly like the OEM the strap’s edges are finished with a smooth wax creating the illusion that this strap is one solid piece. The strap does not have any padding on the top of the tail end when compared to the OEM strap. It is a consistent 4mm thick all the way around. However if you do enjoy the look of the OEM style Vissuto can accommodate you there as well. All their straps are custom made to order so you can let your imagination run wild. Personally, I let Maikel create his masterpiece without any input except for the color and size.
The strap is made with two layers fused together with the underside being a thin black leather with a nice texture of it’s own. You will also notice the Vissuto name stamped clearly on the leather’s underside.
The strap is fitted with a standard double keeper system with one being fixed and the other floating. I am in love with the different texture used for the keepers as compared to the actual strap as previously mentioned. It truly sets this strap off and I often catch myself looking at the buckle area more than anything because of it.
The buckle itself is a polished Pre-V buckle that is sewn in with an etching of his logo on the underside.
The stitching on this particular strap is done with white thread. The blue and white combination goes together as well as peanut butter and jelly. It is done with such precision that is rivals, if not matches the quality of the OEM gator strap.
[slickr-flickr tag=”vissuto” type=”galleria”]
Compared to the OEM gator strap the Vissuto is softer and can be worn right off the bat. I felt with the OEM strap that you have to break it in a bit more as the skin seems to be a bit tougher. It was comfortable on the wrist the moment I put it on and didn’t need to be broken in. The underside of the strap is on par with OEM and feels soft against my wrist.
I can tell by inspecting this strap that the build quality is nothing short of perfect. Maikel and his crew has taken every measure to insure a quality strap from top to bottom. I do not see this strap having any problem lasting the test of time on the wrist. I have a feeling this strap is going to be one of my go to straps when it comes to a more casual gator strap as compared to the standard black or brown. Maikel graciously sent some pictures of their creation process for you to see some of the quality and precision taken to stitch these amazing straps.
I have to say that I am very pleased with all aspects of this Vissuto strap, from the build quality to the comfort level. I would definitely recommend picking up one of their straps if you are in the market for something as good as OEM but the ability to customize all aspects to your liking. You will probably have to wait a bit for the strap to be made but it is well worth it. This particular strap runs about 180 Euro or about $230.oo USD so it’s not a discount strap, but if you want the best you have to pay for it. In my opinion the quality justifies the price with this strap. If you are wanting to pick up a strap just like this just ask for the Bleu Tempete. Happy Shopping!
- OEM Quality build
- Can be completely customized
- Comes with Buckle and Tubes
- Since Vissuto has such a great following, getting one of his custom straps might take a bit of time.
- Higher price point
Since Vissuto is a custom made to order strap company you can get any type of strap that you want built. Just visit their site or blog to get all the information you need. If you want some examples of their work check out the blog or instagram to maybe find your inspiration.
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