FWA Number 4 – The NKxZB01 Horween Belt

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When I was young I would buy whatever cheap throw away items of clothing and accessories were available and in fashion at the time, the clothes I wore were strictly for going out drinking with friends, and for lounging around at home and I honestly did not give them much thought beyond that.

As I got older and earned a little more money I developed an interest in more fashion oriented clothing, a tad more expensive and exclusive to make myself a little more appealing to the ladies.

About 10 years ago I moved my interest forward into really caring about where an item came from, how it was designed and even for the first time where it was made. This was the beginning of the path I now find myself firmly traversing.

The NKxZB belt is made using chromexcel leather from the famed Illinois tannery Horween, it is backed using the choicest Brazilian natural vegetable tanned leather and both strips are hand cut and hand stitched using the unfeasibly time consuming and difficult saddle stitch method. Each belt takes around 7 hours demanding labour to custom make and every operation is completed by one man, the designer and owner of ZeeBee Leathers, Zack Brown.

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To begin my review let me state that I already had what I considered to be a really good belt,one that I had worn pretty much continually for about a year and I considered to be just about as good as anything there was out there, when the NKxZB belt arrived it took me about 5 seconds of handling it to realise that I had been totally wrong. The belt emanates quality, the first thought I had when holding it in my hands was that it truly is one of the most handsome things I had ever seen, the weight, the neatness of the cut and the stitch, the absolutely stunning hand cast plate buckle, the Chicago screws…. I literally could go on and on. The only way that I can really explain the emotive response I had to the belt is that I instinctively knew that I was in possession of an item which would never let me down, and that is a very important feeling for me, I like to be able to rely on things to do their job without question time after time.

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Aside from the durability the belt is a real WOW piece, the buckle is shiny enough to attract the attention of an entire squadron of Magpies, and the chromexcel leather (which I have never been a huge fan of for work boots), polishes to a luxurious luster befitting an item of such apparent character and virtue.

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Moving on to the design it is apparent to see where real thought has been put into the belt. Should the wearer not like the plate buckle the method of attachment has been designed to allow the belt to take just about any sort of buckle available. Although, so sensational is the sleek polished plate that it is difficult to imagine anyone not being enamoured with it straight away.

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In summary what we have here is a real pinnacle piece, something which you will not find bettered elsewhere by anyone. To own and to wear this belt is love it, to hold it is to know its quality on an intuitive level. It does however come with a word of warning, such is the splendour of this belt that it will make other items pale into insignificance, it will raise your expectations for other items and it may be that it could change your thinking on what you really want to be associated with from here on in. The belt is ok with that though, because quality seats well with quality and so should you.

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