How to Shorten My Watch Strap

Updated April 17, 2017

Watch straps are usually fitted to an average-sized wrist. As a result, watch straps may be too tight or too loose for your wrist. If the watch strap is too loose and not adjustable, you will need to shorten it. If the watch strap is made of fabric, rubber or leather, you should easily be able to do this at home. Alternatively, you can visit a watch repair shop to have the strap shortened.

Put the watch onto your wrist as you normally would. Tighten the strap and attach the buckle so that it fits snugly.

Decide how short you'd like the excess strap to be. Typically, you would not want the strap to extend beyond the edge of your wrist.

Mark where you would like the strap to end using your pencil, then remove the watch.

Use your scissors to carefully cut the excess fabric, rubber or leather off the end of the strap. Try to create the same shape in the cut as the original end. For example, if the strap end was rounded, curve the cut or if it was straight, cut straight across.

Use the lighter flame to seal the ends of the strap by carefully bringing the flame close to the fabric. Do not touch the fabric as this can melt it. Simply allow the flame to warm the material slightly. This is most effective for fabric or plastic-based watch straps as it prevents the material from fraying.

Place the watch back onto your wrist and decide if the strap is short enough. If you'd like to shorten it a bit more, repeat the cutting process.


Always exercise care when using an open flame.

Things You'll Need

  • Tailor scissors
  • Pencil
  • Lighter or matches
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About the Author

Ava Perez cut her journalism teeth in 2005 while balancing her university studies with a voracious appetite for fashion, music and beauty. Her music reviews, interviews and editorials have been published in numerous magazines worldwide. She specializes in writing beauty, health and fitness-related articles for various websites. Perez holds a Bachelor of Arts in communications from York University.