Looking to spruce up your favorite watch? Try switching to a mesh bracelet!
Mesh watch bracelets are a fantastic choice for watches of all types. They are an especially crafty way to dress down a dress watch so it can be worn more casually.
However, the process of installing and adjusting a mesh bracelet is a little bit different from what you’d do with a leather strap or a typical metal bracelet.
Here’s how to easily change and adjust a metal mesh watch bracelet yourself using household items!
How to Change a Watch Strap With Floss
This section is adapted from my article on how to change a watch strap with dental floss.
If you already know this process or were able to install the mesh bracelet by other means, feel free to skip to the “bracelet adjustment” section.
If not, here’s a quick recap on how to change out watch bands at home with ease:
Step #1: Get Some Dental Floss
Get your trusty floss from the medicine cabinet and cut off a section that’s two feet long, or so.
Personally, I think it’s a little easier with the flat, wide kind of floss, but this thin stuff I had works too.
Step #2 Insert the Floss
Now, take the floss and feed it into the space between the watch dial and the watch strap like so:
Pretty easy so far.
Step #3: Slide the Floss
Next, slide the floss to the small gap between the top of the strap and one of the watch lugs and pull it tight.
When I did it I heard a tiny “click” sound.
Step #3: Yank Off the Spring Bar
Now, keep tension on the floss and get it into position by moving down and out.
Now, yank the floss.
This step is tricky, so be persistent!
It might take a few tries to get the right angle, but the spring bar will come off.
Step #4: Repeat With the Other Side
Now repeat the same process with the other side of the strap.
Step #5: Insert the Spring Bars Into the New Strap
Now, after you’ve located any rouge spring bars, slide one of them into the new strap.
Again, pretty easy.
Step #6: Attach the Spring Bars
Now, for me, this is the hardest step.
After sticking one end of the spring bar into the hole in the lug, carefully push down on the spring bar with your fingernail and gently slide the other end of the push bar into the other lug hole.
To avoid spring bar mayhem, I’d recommend putting one of your fingers on the lug near the floss directly in the bar’s potential flight path.
With any luck, the spring bar will pop into place and your strap will firmly be in place.
Now repeat with the other side.
There you go — a successful strap swap!
While this process might take you 10-15 minutes, it’ll get the job done.
How to Adjust a Mesh Watch Band
You’ve finally got the mesh band on your watch and you excitedly put it on your wrist.
You look down and see your watch dangling with several inches of empty space between the band and your wrist.
Naturally, you go to adjust the bracelet, but soon realize you don’t know how to change the size.
It’s actually pretty easy. Here’s what you have to do:
Step #1: Insert a Small Metal Lever
First, you want to find the clasp.
Now, insert a small metal lever into the hole in the clasp.
I used a tool on my Swiss Army Knife, but a simple paperclip should work too.
Step #2: Pull the Lever
Now you need to pull the lever.
Using the metal tool and gently lift up the clasp. Put pressure on the inside of the downward-sloping part of the clasp, like this:
With a little pressure, the clasp should easily pop open.
Here’s what it should look like at this point.
Step #3: Adjust the Bracelet
From here, it’s as simple as sliding the clasp to your desired bracelet size and pinching the clasp shut to lock it into place.
It will likely take a few tries to get a perfect fit. (Meaning you’ll want to keep your lever tool handy).
One thing I love about mesh bracelets is that, unlike leather straps, you can make micro-adjustments to get the perfect size. Also, once the clasp is locked into place you won’t have to adjust the bracelet again unless your wrist changes sizes.
That’s it! You’ve successfully installed a mesh bracelet.
Nothing freshens up a watch like a new band!
A stainless steel mesh bracelet is a fantastic alternative to leather straps, especially for dress watches.
What watch do you think looks best with a mesh bracelet? Let me know in the comments!