IWC launches new TimberTex straps

IWC has long been committed to the development of new avant-garde materials and has recently presented a strap made primarily of responsibly sourced paper. The Swiss watch manufacturer, aware of the importance of offering alternatives to responsibly sourced leather, already offers bracelets in steel, fabric and rubber. The Swiss watchmaker is thus further enriching its current offer with the presentation of paper-based TimberTex straps. "Throughout our 153-year history, we have been a leader in product design, material innovation and production methods. From our early formative days using hydropower provided by the Rhine River, to our recent adoption of titanium, ceramics and the creation of Ceratanium, our quest for innovation has resulted in the application of this same pioneering spirit in the discovery of high-quality alternatives for our customers who do not wish to wear animal leather goods," said Franziska Gsell, CMO and Sustainability Committee Chair at IWC. The TimberTex strap is a luxury product both in look and feel, characterised by a soft, malleable texture. Unlike synthetic leather, which is often made from plastic or petroleum, in this case the 80% composition is made from natural plant fibres. The cellulose used comes from trees with Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification, i.e. grown in European forests managed in a sustainable and responsible manner by this non-profit association. Manufactured in Italy using traditional papermaking techniques and coloured with natural vegetable-based dyes, TimberTex has an irregular grain that makes each strap unique. The production of TimberTex straps involves more than 60 steps, and craftsmanship plays a key role among them. The straps are padded with recycled microfibre for extra comfort and finished with recycled yarns. The result is a luxury alternative that is leather-free and easy to wear. They are tested both internally and externally and meet all the quality requirements typical of IWC. They are also very durable and waterproof and show no signs of wear after, for example, a dip in the pool. The TimberTex straps are currently being fitted to four IWC models: the Portugieser Chronograph (pictured), Portugieser Automatic 40, Portofino Automatic and Portofino Chronograph. They are already available in blue, brown and black.