On my aftermarket strap journey I have had the luxury of stumbling upon a lot of companies that I would not have heard of if not for the power of social media. Doing my nightly routine of enjoying the wonders of Instagram, I came across a new strap maker out of St. Petersburg, Russia. They are named Brusnitcyn Bespoke Straps and work with a wide arrange of leathers and skins. I reached out and was able to get a new strap made for my Panerai out of a beautiful grey alligator skin.
The custom strap from Brusnitcyn was delivered in a small black wooden box with a lid that featured a nice gold engraving of their name. It is a nice touch from the strap maker to go one step further and supply nice packaging for their hand made creations.
I chose a very interesting grey gator material for my strap to me out of. It almost has a hint of yellow to it in certain light and is not your typical bland grey that you will find on other skins. The faint hints of the other colors are a bit more visible in between the actual larger scales and crease lines. It definitely offers a nice contrast to the darker ridges.
The quality of the actual skin is top notch and has a nice smooth texture to it. They effectively used different areas of the hide to give a nice change of look throughout the strap. You will notice a smaller round pattern on the buckle side while the tail side has a much larger pattern.
The strap is construction in a two layer method with the underbody composed of a very soft black leather that has a suede or nubuck feel to it. To make the multi-layer design is cleanly composed and finished off with the same grayish hue that is found on the actual strap giving it a sense of continuity.
The strap itself is not padded like an OEM strap but has a good thickness to it all the way around. At the lug end it is 4.5mm while towards the end it is around 3.3mm thick. This makes for a very malleable strap that doesn’t need a lot of time to break in and take shape as you see with other straps.
The stitching is done very meticulously using a grey thread. The actual stitches are nice and tight and show great workmanship considering it was hand done.
The strap comes out of the box ready to go in terms of break in period. It is very wearable right away and won’t need much time to break in comparison to other straps I have dealt with. As mentioned previously the soft lined leather underneath feels great on the skin and didn’t bother me after a full day of on the wrist action.
After taking some time to enjoy the strap I have to say that it’s a very well made strap from top to bottom. They definitely have taken a great bit of pride in the work that they do and it’s evident in the small details of the strap. I always enjoy finding a strap maker that will make something bespoke becuase that’s is an important part of it. There are a lot of strap makers that have created different strap models for you to choose from but I love getting things made directly for me with my vision because I know I will wear it all the time. That is going to be true for this specific strap from Brusnitcyn. I really love the color and how nice it feels on the wrist so it will take a place at the top of my strap rotation.
The only concern I found with the strap, and it is a minor one is that the holes for the lugs were a bit tight to start off. I had to insert my pin a few times to open it up a bit before I tried to mount it to my watch. I think for an aftermarket strap of this caliber it would be nice to have the tubes installed instead of just the standard holes. This is not by any means a deal breaker but more of a nice luxury to have with a beautiful strap.
There are a number of examples that Brusnitcyn can show you in terms of their work but at the end of the day they are a bespoke strap company so anything is possible as long as they have the material. Everything is made to order so you have to reach out and see what materials they have in stock to work with.
Instagram: Brusnitcyn Bespoke Straps
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