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How to Keep Your Pants On by the Chief Buckler Part 2 of 11

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In this post, we continue to define a handful of terms in our quest to help you keep your pants on. Today’s term is another familiar one: Belt.

At first glance, “belt” seems like a gimme. That said, “belt” is more complicated than it appears. Belt can be a verb as in “belt out a tune,” or it can be used to define a geographic area as in “The Bible Belt.” For our purposes, it’s a belt if you have a strap currently working with a buckle to keep your pants on. To be clear, if you don’t have a buckle the thing wrapped around your waist is called a strap. If you have a buckle and your pants are currently down, you might need a new strap. You can get one HERE.

If you’ve seen the movie Fifty Shades of Grey, you know belts can be used for a host of activities outside of keeping your pants on. You also know belts help announce the significance of taking your pants off. Before we delve too deeply, let’s return to our current topic as we hope to cover “How to Take Your Pants Off” in a separate series.

Confusion about the definition of “belt” leads to confusion about how to effectively assemble one. As mentioned above, you need a good strap and a good buckle to assemble a good belt. Too often, people underestimate the importance of either the strap or the buckle. As an example, a person spends $100 on a belt where the strap cost $99 and the buckle cost $1. You’ll quickly notice the tinny, yellow clasp. It’s at the center of the whole arrangement. Can’t miss it.

Here’s our suggestion. If you’re into straps, spend extra on the strap and less on the buckle. If you’re into buckles, spend extra on the buckle and less on the strap. A good ratio to keep in mind is 3 to 1 (if you fear math, skip this paragraph). Typically you don’t want to spend more than three times the cost for one item over the other. I’m partial to buckles so I decide to spend $300 on my custom belt buckle. Therefore, I should spend no less than $100 on my strap.

If 3 on top of 1 frightens you, think of the belt as a suit. In one case you have the strap and the buckle. In the other, you have the pants and the jacket. You want the quality of your pants and jacket to match. And you want the quality of the strap and the buckle to match.

Don’t forget the buckle makes up half of a belt. As illustrated in “How to Keep Your Pants On Part 1 of 11,” the a belt isn’t a belt without a buckle. The belt isn’t a belt without a strap either. The relationship between strap and buckle is symbiotic. One does not function without the other. To make a good belt, you need quality in both.