WatchUSeek Watch Forums banner
1 - 15 of 15 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,265 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a light brown leather strap that I would like to darken a bit so that it matches better with my AT8500. Is it possible to do such a thing without ruining the strap? Any tips would be great.


(Yes, I did use the search function, and the closest I got was a member asking how to dye a nato strap)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
154 Posts
Using a treatment like neatsfoot oil will darken leather, but it will also have the affect of softening the leather. That may not be desirable in a watch strap. There are dyes specifically made for leather. If you do not have a local leather craft shop, almost any shoe repair shop would have them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,857 Posts
Hi, BaCaitlan:

I think it depends on your strap--in terms of the finish, etc. In past I've tried to change the colour of shoes using polishes and so forth after stripping them, but only wound up taking them to a cobbler to fix as I did a very bad job of it, so personally I wouldn't recommend that (Note: there be a ton of great many talented artists and craftspeople out there, but alas, I'm not one of them :-d

Depending on the finish and actual colour, if you use a leather conditioner--i.e., Lexol--it does tend to darken lighter colours, the trick being to apply it evenly, though. I've also heard that water-proofing products, like Neat's Oil, Mink Oil and so forth similarly darken light-colour leather, as does good old-fashioned Dubbin. I wouldn't personally use these latter products on fine leathers as tend to be used for watch straps, though, being more for tough, full grains--i.e., boots, heavy coats, etc. and even then sparingly, and never on exotics, being careful also to ensure that what you use, if at all, doesn't contain silicon. Moreover, it's been suggested that products like mink oil and dubbin can wreak havoc on stitching--again, fine for heavy boots using i.e. modern heavy stitching, but I don't think it's a good idea on that used for watch straps. That said, Lexol is fine in that department, and I use it myself pretty much on all but my light coloured and exotic leathers, as I don't want to darken them .... :)

Or, you could simply take the easy way out and buy a new strap in the colour you desire ;)

Just my thoughts on the matter, and hope this helps. Cheers.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,265 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Hi, BaCaitlan:

I think it depends on your strap--in terms of the finish, etc. In past I've tried to change the colour of shoes using polishes and so forth after stripping them, but only wound up taking them to a cobbler to fix as I did a very bad job of it, so personally I wouldn't recommend that (Note: there be a ton of great many talented artists and craftspeople out there, but alas, I'm not one of them :-d

Depending on the finish and actual colour, if you use a leather conditioner--i.e., Lexol--it does tend to darken lighter colours, the trick being to apply it evenly, though. I've also heard that water-proofing products, like Neat's Oil, Mink Oil and so forth similarly darken light-colour leather, as does good old-fashioned Dubbin. I wouldn't personally use these latter products on fine leathers as tend to be used for watch straps, though, being more for tough, full grains--i.e., boots, heavy coats, etc. and even then sparingly, and never on exotics, being careful also to ensure that what you use, if at all, doesn't contain silicon. Moreover, it's been suggested that products like mink oil and dubbin can wreak havoc on stitching--again, fine for heavy boots using i.e. modern heavy stitching, but I don't think it's a good idea on that used for watch straps. That said, Lexol is fine in that department, and I use it myself pretty much on all but my light coloured and exotic leathers, as I don't want to darken them .... :)

Or, you could simply take the easy way out and buy a new strap in the colour you desire ;)

Just my thoughts on the matter, and hope this helps. Cheers.
Thanks for the in-depth response. I had ordered a few darker brown straps but it never looked right with the watch I have in mind. The light brown strap is a Hamilton watch (it came from the Viewmatic). To me, that the thickness and tapering of that strap would be perfect for the AT8500, however, the colour is too light (in my opinion) - hence I'm thinking of darkening it just a bit.

I'm going to look at some of the treatments that you and siodad recommended. One thing that I don't want is for the treatment to come onto my wrist if I start to sweat.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
14,790 Posts
I darkened a strap with Leather Honey (didn't change the color of my leather jacket though). I drenched the strap in the stuff 3 or 4 times and it came out perfect. The leather didn't have the water proof coating or any other finish so that may be why it worked out well. You could also try some darker shoe polish.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,152 Posts
I darkened a strap with Leather Honey (didn't change the color of my leather jacket though). I drenched the strap in the stuff 3 or 4 times and it came out perfect. The leather didn't have the water proof coating or any other finish so that may be why it worked out well. You could also try some darker shoe polish.
Unfortunately, that's a bad idea. I tried that once, and even used Saphir Renovateur afterwards, but I still had the polish rubbing off on my shirts.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
I would recomend trying with some leather conditioner or if you wish using something that is 100% safe in contact with the skin you could allso try oliveoil, yes the same used for cooking, it darkens leather guite nicely. If using oliveoil just spread it lightly with a cloth on the strap, as you can add it as many times you like, but if the result is too dark it´s not easy to get it lighter. But I woldn´t even think of using shoe polish as the often have dhemicals you propably would not like to be in contact with your skin.
As an upholsterer I´ve used many leatherproducts as a finnishing touch and found that in many cases the oliveoil does the same as these more expencive treatments, I´ve also tried many different leatherpaints, but I don´t use those products anymore at all, so you can make your own conclusions from that.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,496 Posts
A dab of petroleum jelly spread evenly on the surface, with any excess wiped off, will be easily absorbed by most leather and will darken it nicely. Warning: The more you use, the darker--and softer--the leather will get. I have used this with no adverse effects, although I wouldn't try it on exotic leathers. After the jelly dries, it doesn't come off on your arm or clothes. And it doesn't give leather a greasy feel etc. Best of all, it's practically free. You could try this on a small portion of the strap normally hidden by the tail to see how you like it.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Tony A.H

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,544 Posts
A dab of petroleum jelly spread evenly on the surface, with any excess wiped off, will be easily absorbed by most leather and will darken it nicely. Warning: The more you use, the darker--and softer--the leather will get. I have used this with no adverse effects, although I wouldn't try it on exotic leathers. After the jelly dries, it doesn't come off on your arm or clothes. And it doesn't give leather a greasy feel etc. Best of all, it's practically free. You could try this on a small portion of the strap normally hidden by the tail to see how you like it.
Thanks for the Tip. :-!
had no Idea the Pertoleun Jelly would Work well. :think:

Cheers
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,544 Posts
i tried it and it worked.

a Couple of Straps i make . Both came from the SAME Hide .
the Lighter one was un-treated and the other i had Applied 1 Coat of Mink Oil . then Later on i Learned that Mink Oil wasn't a Good idea. and was SUPPOSE to Use Meatsfoot instead. ( well now i know :roll:).

but seems to look OK (for Now).


and looks even Darker after a few of Wear.


i don't know IF Mink Oil is really BAD for Leather..
guess Time will Tell.!

Cheers
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,265 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I would recomend trying with some leather conditioner or if you wish using something that is 100% safe in contact with the skin you could allso try oliveoil, yes the same used for cooking, it darkens leather guite nicely. If using oliveoil just spread it lightly with a cloth on the strap, as you can add it as many times you like, but if the result is too dark it´s not easy to get it lighter. But I woldn´t even think of using shoe polish as the often have dhemicals you propably would not like to be in contact with your skin.
As an upholsterer I´ve used many leatherproducts as a finnishing touch and found that in many cases the oliveoil does the same as these more expencive treatments, I´ve also tried many different leatherpaints, but I don´t use those products anymore at all, so you can make your own conclusions from that.
Once the olive oil has penetrated into the leather strap...would it ever leave a mark on shirt cuffs?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,474 Posts
I would recomend trying with some leather conditioner or if you wish using something that is 100% safe in contact with the skin you could allso try oliveoil, yes the same used for cooking, it darkens leather guite nicely. If using oliveoil just spread it lightly with a cloth on the strap, as you can add it as many times you like, but if the result is too dark it´s not easy to get it lighter. But I woldn´t even think of using shoe polish as the often have dhemicals you propably would not like to be in contact with your skin.
As an upholsterer I´ve used many leatherproducts as a finnishing touch and found that in many cases the oliveoil does the same as these more expencive treatments, I´ve also tried many different leatherpaints, but I don´t use those products anymore at all, so you can make your own conclusions from that.
welcome and thanks for the informative post.
 
1 - 15 of 15 Posts
Top