Van Der Spek Undyed Binder after 8½ months of constant use

Lately I have not updated as often as I usually do because this beauty has mainly stayed on my desk. I am now working on translations so I don’t need it for bookings and I don’t carry it around for about 12kms per day like I usually do. I will go back to my regular schedule from the beginning of August when Sweden comes back from its summer jollidays.

So I don’t think there is more wear on it than the last time I did an update, though it may be a smidge darker.

The original project was to use an undyed binder for six months so Van Der Spek customers who wanted to try this leather could see exactly how it wore and aged with constant use. The six-month period was up long ago but I still have no desire to move out of it, even though I am heading for almost 9 months in one binder, which is practically unheard of for me. This binder has developed and formed itself to me like no other. Its design is perfect, the size is exactly what I need and the leather has taken on personality and character like no other leather, because it marks and changes so easily. The patina is absolutely beautiful and will only get better with time.

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Author: Janet Carr

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

14 thoughts

  1. Janet,
    I’m wondering about the Flatability of your planner. It has bontex support, right? Will it ever be completely flat?

    1. It is getting flatter and flatter as time goes by but I am not sure it will ever be completely flat. But that is probably due to the way I use it – it is closed most of the time because I have to carry it around so much. If I worked with it open it would probably be flatter.

      1. Could you kindly post a picture? Either here or in the VDS Facebook group? Thanks! (Working through order details with Petra right now!) 🙂

  2. Janet, I really love your updates about the undyed. I also ” blame” your posts for my now irresistible urge to order a similar binder. Can I ask you if you use any products on the leather to clean it, given that it is undyed?
    It looks really beautiful and unique and I look forward to tour next post!

    1. I am glad you enjoy them. I love this binder. It is unheard of for me to stay in one for so long. No I don’t use any products on the leather, apart from a baby wipe every six weeks or so.

  3. So glad you’re keeping up your progress with this binder…..

    From my perspective, it just gets better and better looking each time you show it…..

    Was tempted to get this leather for the vdS binders I ordered a few months ago, but I thought I didn’t have to patience to wait for the leather to get the nice patina….


    1. It is lovely and I think the patina is what is making it impossible for me to move out of it – which is really unprecedented for me!

  4. Hi Janet, I hope you are enjoying a nice extended birthday weekend! :-). Right now I am thinking of going with Brandy Italian exterior with Undyed in the interior. I think this might work since I want some “pop” and be unique. I am a little worried about the Brandy as I usually lean towards pebbled leather. Of the new JL colors do you have a preference to go with the Undyed?

    1. I think the brandy would look great with the undyed – better than any of the new JL leathers. Another one that would look fantastic is the burgundy croc. I know someone had that combination – undyed and burgundy croc.

  5. I really love the look of it besides your description. What I would be interessted in is your opinion which leather you think is better; Janet leather or the undied?

    1. Ooh that is a difficult one. Both are fantastic leathers! I would imagine that over the longer term, the undyed will be more durable and develop more patina but will also become more marked and scratched. That process of ageing is not for everyone. The JL also marks quite easily but the colour is more beautiful than the undyed. Hope this helps!

  6. This binder is lovely, Janet. How many planners do you typically have in play at one time? Do you have one for desk and one for your bag, or do you live out of the same one until you change? I don’t usually stick with one for too long, either–I keep remembering why I liked my smaller/bigger one/disc bound/ring bound. I have a small store in my closet!

    1. In most use are two – one personal which is my wallet and everyday carry and one A5 which has all my work and home information in it. I also use one for archiving and a mini when I travel.

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