The (Cool) NATO Strap
Strongly trendy and funky, the NATO strap has revolutionized the way we wear watches over these last years. Indeed, this nylon or fine leather ribbon can be exchanged in a second by the wearer, who with that act changes the look of his or her watch to better express personality, mood, and style requirements.
Almost all watches are compatible with NATO straps, which now exist in plenty of colors and patterns. Experts differentiate between different types of NATO straps: while the first generation was a single ribbon, the second has doubled the material, thereby securing the watch better to the wrist. The third, called Zulu, is actually thicker and boasts rounded buckles.
The NATO strap was invented by armies around the 1940s. It had to be resistant to humidity, tearing, and made in one single piece, with no reflections and long enough to be secured around a diving suit. The British Ministry of Defense published a very strict specification booklet in 1973, which has nothing to do with the "NATO” name. This references the material's serial number of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.
We particularly thank the Davidoff Brothers in Geneva, experts in affordable and refurbished vintage watches, for lending us a few NATO straps to illustrate this video: www.davidoffbrothers.com