Unrivaled Quality

How to Make the Perfect Belt

It Starts with the Highest Quality Materials

The secret to making the perfect belt is that you have to start with the best raw materials. Even if you have the best artisan belt makers in the world, but are working with poor materials, you’re not going to end up with a great belt. At BeltCraft, we’ve spent countless hours and traveled clear across the country to find the best leather hides, cotten, thread and buckles, so that the building blocks of our belts are of the utmost quality.

Belts today are constructed from materials that range greatly in quality. Many people don’t realize it, but there are different grades of leather, which range from the strongest and most beautiful to little more than scraps glued together. The same goes for buckles. If you hold one of our buckles next to a department store brand, you’ll immediately be able to tell the difference. So goes for all of the materials that we use.

It takes the best materials to make the best belts.

The Four Grades of Leather Explained

Full Grain Leather

  • Best leather money can buy.
  • Most durable and beautiful grade of leather.
  • Expensive but will last forever.
  • Very difficult to work with.

Found at BeltCraft.

Top Grain Leather

  • Stronger than genuine leather.
  • Sanded and refinished to improve look.
  • Durable but does not age well.
  • Difficult to work with.

Genuine Leather

  • Worst piece of actual leather.
  • Weak and ages very poorly.
  • Typically spray painted to look like better leather.
  • Easy and cheap to work with.

Found in department stores.

Bonded Leather

  • Not actual leather.
  • Dust & shavings of leather glued and pressed together.
  • Degrades quickly.
  • Painted to disguise flaws.

Found in discount stores.

Best Quality

Worst Quality

Suede & Cotton

Our suede is drum dyed, split calf suede, so it has a finer nap than your standard off the shelf belt. Since suede is a less durable material by nature than Full Grain Leather, we back all of our suede belts with 5-6 ounces of backing, so it will last you for years.

We buy the best 1.25 inch heavyweight cotton we could find and then trim the ends of the belt with our full grain leather, so you have the best of both materials.

Buckles & Thread

Your belt is only as good as the material that holds it together, which is why we use heavy duty bonded nylon thread instead of weaker cotton thread to sew our belt pieces together.

It would be a disservice to our full grain leather to use a lightweight buckle to finish it off, which is why we use only solid brass buckles for our belts. Each buckle is either plated with nickel for silver or left the natural brass color for gold.

It takes an artisan to make a masterpiece.

Third Generation Beltmakers - A Century of Expertise

While you need to start with the best materials, it takes an experienced beltmaker to turn those raw materials into a beautiful finished product. Our shop has been making belts for over a hundred years and our head beltmaker is a 3rd generation leathersmith. When beltmaking is the family business, you know that the final product is going to be amazing.

Every one of our belts is handmade by an artisan in the shop. Everything from cutting the hide and shaping the material to stitching the pieces and stamping the holes is done by hand, and of course, every belt is inspected to make sure that it meets our high quality standards before it is shipped off to you.

This is American made craftsmanship at its finest.