VDS Swatches and the favorites

Below are the VDS swatches that Steve and I received when we were in the Netherlands. I took these photographs in natural light beside a window with my iPad. It is rather gloomy here in Sweden now until March or so as it does not get properly light, but I would say this is a good representation of the colours.


photo 2-3

photo 3

photo 4

photo 5

Below are the same swatches with red arrows to show my favorites, and blue arrows to show the favorite swatches at the meet we had yesterday.

photo 2-3 photo 3

photo 4

photo 5


Author: Janet Carr

Fashion, beauty and animal loving language consultant from South Africa living in Stockholm, Sweden.

25 thoughts

  1. HI Janet

    I’m after a grey exterior for my VdS (too late to grab a grey Malden!). Would you be able to give me the numbers of the two greys you have showing?

    Thanks so much


  2. Hi Janet,

    Can you please tell me what colors/numbers are two of the samples in the 3rd photo down from the top one.

    A. The ‘tan’ color sample in the lower left of photo?

    B. Is the sample just above the green sample the ‘undyed leather’ that you’ve been writing about or ?

    Thank you!


    1. I don’t have my samples to hand at the moment but I will check and let you know tomorrow about this time. If I have not, will you remind me in a comment? There is no sample of the undyed – the pale one with the writing on it next to the yellow is the paper tag for the special nappas and the pale one above the green in the other photo is Italian calfskin I think but I will check the colour for you.

      1. That sounds great…..

        To clarify…..

        Please check photo that is third photo down from top photo…..

        I’m asking about the samples that are above and below the green leather sample on the left side of photo.

        Thank you for your help!

      1. Thank you so much for following up with all the info. It’s really helpful and appreciated!

        Now, I just need to hear back from vdS about ordering the binder…..hopefully soon…..so, I can get in their queue…… 🙂

  3. Hi there.. thank you so much for these images and your work on the FB page – I have been going through it for ages! I was hoping you could tell me the name/number of the bright blue in the first image? I am looking for a photo of #6219. In the FB group it looks blue but when I select it in the VDSshop it seems to be more teal… Also, is the yellow in the second image #27. Thank you again!

  4. Hi Janet, I’m curious as to what colour number the yellow-ey colour is in pic 2 and the green colour in pic 3
    (that’s the apple green right)? My hubby has offered to get me a VDS for Christmas and I don’t have time to order swatches now. I’m looking for a really chartreuse green (more yellow than green). Thank you!!! <3

    1. The yellow in picture number two from the top is ‘yellow special nappa’ and the one in pic three is ’09’. It is an acid yellowy green and really looks lovely with the grey ostrich.

      Hope this helps!

      1. Yes, that does help, thanks Janet! Now to hunker down and decide on sizes…too many decisions to make! 😉

  5. I sent an email to Petra for custom compact order. Hasn’t heard back from her yet. What I have in mind is grey ostrich with some sort of pink inside. Online only shows lipstick and fuxia. Which one is the hot pink? Or there is another one that is a true hot pink.

    This compact will be my wallet/planner so I want the leather that will be durable, easy to maintain and shine after love !!

    After seeing all your beautiful posts and also all fhe fb photos, I have following options

    1. Grey ostrich with hot pink
    2. I really like gillio orange color leather and wonder if the nappa leather orange swatch similar to the gillio? If so I am thinking about either brown ostrich with orange or black crocks (the swatch you show in the crock section with both blue and red arrows) with orange. I really like the three you choice for the crock section
    3. Pop color outside with something neutral inside. Like red ostrich with brown or orange inside
    4. I also see the dark green ostrich you post. I always want something green and love the dark forest green color. Yet I don’t really ever own something in green. What will be the best inside color to go with ?

    On my! I think I am getting myself confused ><
    Too many options and cannot make up my mind after seeing all those pretty picture. I need some help !!

    Btw, do you know how long it will take Petra to response the custom order emails ?

    1. 1. The grey ostrich looks good with everything – hot pink would be fab and it also looks nice in yellowy green.

      2. The Gillio orange epoca is less bright on the swatches I have of both and the nappa is very much softer and smoother.

      4. The dark green would be nice with a dark purple on the inside I think or perhaps burgundy. Or another green would be nice.

      If Petra has not replied in about 24 hours it would be an idea to tag her in the group and ask if she has seen your email. Sometimes mail gets lost but other times if a custom request is very complicated she needs time to think!

      1. Thank you for your help Janet. I’ll wait over the weekend and see if Petra replied. In the meantime, I’ll think very hard for my color combo. Thanks

      2. Can I just say how nice it is to read a comment like ‘I’ll wait over the weekend’? So many people these days seem to expect anyone and everyone to be a mind-reader who can answer questions and solve problems before they’ve even arisen.

      3. Really? So Petra and the rest of the Van der Spek team/family are just expected to be at the beck and call of anyone who might happen to e-mail, irrespective of time differences and the fact that everyone is perfectly allowed to do stuff other than work?

        Some people need to calm down and get over their senses of entitlement.

  6. Hi Janet

    The selection you have is more then what VDS website offers. Are those all ready for order or only whatever online ?

    1. Yes they are all ready for order. If you are interested in one and you are not sure what it is, just let me know and I will check the name or number on the back so you know what to order.

      1. First off – love the site and thank you for all the useful information! I used to live in South Africa so it’s even more exciting to see that connection there too!

        I’m looking to get a custom VDS (my first organiser!) and thinking of Blue outside (why Filofax think men only want brown or black is beyond me), and some sort of maroon or deeper red inside. I’m struggling to match the various colours on the VDS site, and the pictures you’ve taken above and others on the net. (As a photographer, I can tell you that colour matching online is somewhat tricky !!).

        Is the Blue (6218) in any of the above pictures? I can’t see one that matches the one on their site (when you go through the custom selection of outside and inside colours).

        Is the Red Italian (180) there as well? Any suggestions for a suitable inside colour to match Blue outside colour?



      2. Yes the blue and the red italian are there. I think these pics are more reliable than the website to be honest, though that is probably because I have seen them in person and have them to hand. If you like I can send you a photo with an arrow showing which are those colours.

        For suggestions about blue combinations I would go to Philofaxy.com and look for Van Der Spek. Steve has had several blue binders made and he has a gorgeous grey nappa inside. He has articles about them on there as well. Another nice combination is red 180 inside and out, or red with dark green ostrich.

      3. Thanks for your speedy response Janet 🙂

        Yes please, if you can send me a photo that shows me those 2 colours, that would be extremely useful! I’m off in the meantime to go and read Steve’s articles.



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