Strap Guide written by @lifeof_a_wis. Thank you Agustin!
There are a few timepieces that one can immediately notice from a distance. A case shape that draws attention especially to the WIS-minded person like me. PANERAI is one of them. With its military roots, one cannot deny how robust and innovative their designs are. From the patented Radiomir, to the Luminor, down to the iconic “love-hate” crown protecting device which is a recognizable element of the brand.
The Submersible variant took inspiration from a piece Panerai made for the Egyptian navy called “Egiziano” which had a rotating and calibrated bezel, integrated lugs compared to welded wire lugs from the first Radiomir and again, the crown guard.
The PAM973 featured in this strap guide is a 42mm Submersible variant which fits comfortably on my wrist. Although it is a divers piece, it is very versatile with a leather band. After all, the former issues to the Royal Navy were mostly tanned, water-resistant leather straps.
I have been using my PAM for almost a year with a rubber strap and I think it is about time to explore different strap options to fully enjoy this piece. Delugs offers an extensive collection of leather and canvas selections for Panerai. Take a look at the different strap alternatives I chose for the 973 that can more elevate its wrist presence.
Sage Waxed Canvas ChunkyNothing screams military than a canvas strap. To me at least. I have tried a few canvas straps over time but I have never experienced how quick this one conformed to my wrist without the dreaded “wrist-pinch” due to the stiff composition of materials being used by other artisans. The sage colored strap raises the ruggedness appearance of the PAM973, and with constant wear, it will eventually crease and develop a special character well fitting for a tool watch. I can’t wait to have adventures with this combo.
Denim Babele ChunkyAmong all iconic diver watches out there, one cannot argue that Panerai will always look at home with a leather strap. They only introduced a steel bracelet back in 1999. Choosing a leather strap for a Panerai watch can take you hours and hours as the selection are endless. One should always consider a certain style, comfort, quality of build and something that would definitely define the wearer’s taste in a personal manner. The Babele strap fitted here has a distinct textile-like patterned leather that adds a mixture of elegance and toughness altogether. Although slimmer in profile, it maintains a balanced feel with the watch while hugging your wrist with ease. By choosing the denim color, it blends well with the bluish text on the dial including the sub second hands.
Mocha Crazy Horse ChunkyA Panerai on a brown leather strap can exhibit nostalgia not just to the typical Paneristi but maybe to the general enthusiast as well. Indeed a very classic look. The crazy horse leather may be one of those sub-families of leather that I always have in my pile of straps. I love how it starts to appear pure and simple yet it gets more appealing over time. It’s like having a strap that beautifully ages the more you use it and every scratch or rub can leave a mark that can tell a story. The mocha shade complements the look and tones down the contemporary features of the 973.
Grigio Minerva Box ChunkyFirst time I came across Minerva box leather is when I made the strap guide for the Grand Seiko SBGJ201. After that, I instantly admired its characteristics. The Minerva box leather has a pebbled style grain that is subtle enough not to overpower the watch and adds a unique charisma to the overall look of the PAM973. Another element I am looking forward with this strap is the ability to age uniquely depending on how you use it. Only time can tell how this strap can develop its distinctive patina. To sum up, it seems like this strap is specifically made for a Panerai. Grigio is Italian for grey. Minerva Box leather is from a tannery in Italy. Guess where Giovanni Panerai opened his first shop? Yes, Italy.
Black Crazy Horse ChunkyPanerai, IWC, Grand Seiko, H. Moser & Cie., Greubel Forsey. It doesn’t matter what watches you may own, a black leather strap is essential in one’s stockpile. It’s a common staple for any watch enthusiasts and the like. One aspect I like with the color black is that it can send very mixed messages. Quoting color psychology’s description: “…black’s color meaning is symbolic of mystery, power, elegance and sophistication.” I believe this can be one reason why it needs to be a part of one’s wardrobe color palette. By now, you may have already realized that I am a fan of the crazy horse leather. Not because it came from horses but because of its remarkable effect that can combine luxury and rustic touch. I decided to match the white markers of the 973 with the stitching of the strap so it won’t look monotonous. I think the contrasting stitching makes it more appealing to the eyes. A combination that is effortlessly attractive.
- Reference: Panerai PAM973
- Case Size: 42mm
- Thickness: 13.2mm
- Lug-to-Lug: 51mm
- Lug Width: 22mm
If you enjoyed this Strap Guide, be sure to check out the rest of our Strap Guides for more inspirations!