One of man’s earliest and most useful discoveries, leather, has had a diverse use throughout the years. It’s been used by our primitive ancestors to protect themselves from the elements. In ancient times it’s been made into anything from footwear, clothes or weapons to saddles and chairs, leading up to the softer and more supple leather used today for automobile seats or quality watch straps.
With the origin of the leather depending on predominant fauna in a certain geographical region, it should come as no surprise that the majority of leather produced in Finland comes from reindeer. There are over 200.000 reindeer in Finland, roaming over an area covering more than a third of the country. The semi-domesticated animal also provides milk and meat, meaning they are herded by many Finns, especially in the northern parts of the country. Finland’s exploitation of its reindeer population is done with great care for the ecosystem and laws are in place to make sure balance is preserved between herding and nature.
Reindeer leather is particularly useful for creating leather clothing items and accessories. The reasons for that are its thickness of only 0.5-0.6 mm, its silky touch and the large size of the animal meaning beautiful designs can be made from large pieces of leather, without unnecessary seams.
In the 1920s, visionary and entrepreneur Hugo Ahlskog founded Ahlskog Tannery, with his work later continued by his son Mats. Together they managed to constantly develop the company and its production, becoming one of the first tanneries in the world to claim certification for its environmentally friendly operations. Over the years the tannery’s products constantly grew in quality, increasing reindeer leather’s reputation as a guarantee for unique and timeless designs offering luxury from Finnish nature.
A niche product of leather tannery that has been constantly growing over the years is the developing of reindeer leather watch bands. They offer a number of advantages, the first and most obvious being the style and class they add to your appearance. They are also very light, soft and long lasting if they are maintained properly and offer a smooth feel that’s suitable for long use.
Versatility is another reason why reindeer leather watch straps are so appreciated, meaning that their subtle and elegant design can be shown on any occasion. Unlike shiny metal watch bracelets who take away attention from the actual watch, leather is complementary to its design, actually enhancing the beauty of the timepiece.
Another family owned company, FinWatchStraps, makes excellent use of Ahlskog leather by producing beautifully crafted hand-made Nordic deer leather watch straps. Wearers of watches like TAG Heuer, Rolex, Omega, Philippe Patek or Panerai constantly turn to FinWatchStraps for replacement watch bands, because their unique texture and design match the timeless style of the watches themselves.
Also, clients of these brands are usually very demanding people with distinct personalities, so FinWatchStraps has taken an extra step towards customer satisfaction by providing customized straps that are crafted according to instructions given to them by the client. Their expertise in understanding the client’s needs and demands ensure that the end product will be exceptional every time, and as unique as the future wearer’s personality. And why stop at one? A beautiful watch deserves different straps for different occasions, and with a large number of colors and textures to choose from, the watch owner can make sure he or she has the perfect strap for every occasion.
The company takes great pride in the fact that all products are completely hand crafted and without any kind of mechanical use. The result of that is superior stitching due to the vast experience of their craftsmen, and the guarantee that the design of the strap matches perfectly with the design of the client’s watch. That doesn’t mean there isn’t a number of premade straps that can be bought, made from a wide range of leather types, styles and colors and are all unique and stunning in their own way.
Reindeer leather is and always will be a great part of Finnish culture, with its smoothness and quality guaranteeing long lasting products. So if you’re looking for a stylish leather band to go with your expensive elegant watch, you should look no further than FinWatchStraps, made with original Ahlskog reindeer leather. Whether it’s for yourself or you need it as a gift, their technicians’ vast experience with hand crafting personalized leather straps means you will be able to transfer a piece of your own personality into it, while maybe surprising yourself in the process.