Moved into the first ever Janet Leather binder


After the EPIC fail suffered by my good self this week, where I was in the wrong place at the wrong time three times, I thought maybe a move to a different binder was what I needed. A change is as good as a holiday, right?

I usually switch binders every two or three weeks to prevent boredom and keep me using them with great enthusiasm. I have been in my undyed binder since November 2014 and have not wanted to move out. But this made me think that I do need a change – even if only a temporary one – to reinvigorate me and my organisation.

This personal-sized Van Der Spek custom binder is the first ever binder made from the first batch of Janet leather, which I found in the storage area of the Van Der Spek factory. It was full of marks and scars which is what I loved about it.

It is exactly the same design as my undyed binder except it has no ring protectors and is fitted with a second pen loop. The flyleaf has a secretarial pocket on the back for notes. I have a matching pen case for it.

It feels and smells gorgeous. The credit card slots are still very tight as it has never been used. This leather is fantastic – like leather used to be. Reminds me of the wild west!


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This is the leather it was made from:



I watched it first being drawn up by Petra as I told her what I wanted, and then cut by JP, who asked me at every stage which part of the leather I wanted.







In the foreground you can see my Hobonichi (plus cover), and one of my Traveler’s notebooks which I took to Rotterdam with me so that Steve and I could brainstorm with the Van Der Speks about future products. To the left are the small grommets that Mr Van Der Spek used on the very first Nomad prototype. 







Author: Janet Carr

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

2 thoughts

  1. Hi Janet,

    Did it work? I mean, did the change of planners make it easier to keep using it? I have only one daily binder I use, filofax Kendal. I love it, but I am experiencing the same sort of planner fail you described.. not the planner or the system failing, but I am failing to look and update it.

    My big hesitation to change planners is that I will need to buy a new planner to use. And I can’t find a planner that will work as well as the Kendal..I NEED two pen loops and a secretarial pocket and I want brown leather. Filofax doesn’t have a personal with two pen loops in real leather at the moment. The only binder I can find is a black topaz.. which is not brown!

    The alternative would be to order a Van der Spek custom binder with 2 penloops and a secretarial pocket. I would love brown ostrich leather with brandy italian inside.. but it is so expensive. I would need to know that the change in binders would add something..


    1. Yes it did work – brilliantly! I loved my undyed but I think fatigue set in after well over a year in it. I am now using my Janet Leather all the time and have not had a scheduling mishap so far. I have updated all the information in it so I think a change really really helped me. The advantage for me is that both binders have exactly the same design, apart from the undyed having ring protectors and the Janet Leather having a second pen loop. So I get to keep my favourite design and just use it in other leather. That may be an option for you. Changing binders made a huge difference for me.

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