The phantom vegan journal! I believe that there is not much out there that can outlast a good quality leather journal nor can anything really give the look of leather, however there’re are many options out there for the vegan and many that I’m more than willing to explore. I love a good challenge and I’ll undertake this as I would any other challenge.

There a many options out there for those of us who are vegan, while I now eat meat, there was a time when I did not, hard to believe for someone who handles leather on a regular basis! In fact the first time I bought a hide I was rather grossed out by it. I guess in the years since then I’ve gotten past it, but still I like to know that the lamb hide I buy is a by-product of the meat industry, the animals were not killed for their hide. Believe it or not, I choose to buy hides that many bookbinders would not because of this fact. I’ll not go into my political and social beliefs about the meat industry but I feel I have an interesting perspective due to my upbringing and due to the industry that I now work in (my DayJob not my bookbinding.) That is a discussion I’m willing to take up in email but not on my bookbinding blog.

AS for vegan books and materials I suppose canvas would be a great option for a journal, it could also be decorated to simulate the look of leather. A good quality acrylic paint could fill in the surface and remain flexible, while the various colors of acrylic could give it the color and various acrylic mediums could give it the finish. That being said it would take some experimentation to get it right.

I hate vinyl and wouldn’t suggest it to simulate the look of leather, perhaps some of the other leather replacement options out there? (On a personal note- virgin vinyl is pretty evil environmentally. I one were to go after the vinyl option I would suggest recycling it. Like freitag or one of the other places that recycles vinyl signs, I bet if you went into your local grocery store and asked them for their old sis to recycle they might give some up.) Vinyl is also pretty easily decorated, any one out there have any suggestions for decorating vinyl?

I’m going to have to spend some time in the studio and experiment.