While organizing her vinyl collection Katie Pietrak realized the black vinyl, colorful labels, and great artwork on the sleeves would make fantastic book covers and started making notebooks out of them. Friends and family flipped for her journals, and she started selling them soon after. Her company, Vintage Vinyl, began as a hobby, and it's since grown into a full time gig.
She makes her journals with recycled record covers, 30% recycled paper inside, and no-VOC adhesive to hold it all together.
Katie was kind enough to chat with us about what she does, what inspires her, and why she loves it.
gUP: Can you tell me more about what makes your journals eco-friendly?
KP: We rescued the forgotten vinyl record and lovingly crafted our journals for those who appreciate a simpler time – when albums started with a pop and a hiss, as needle met groove and thoughts were recorded pen to paper. The front and backs are the journals are handcrafted with authentic recycled vintage LPs and the original album artwork, making each journal truly unique. The inside contains 240 acid-free high quality unlined eco-friendly recycled pages. The paper is 30% PCW and made in a wind-generated facility.
gUP: What kinds of adhesives do you use?
KP: The adhesive we use is a PVA. Neutral pH Adhesive is made of archival polyvinyl acetate (PVA). It should not become brittle with age, and adheres to most porous surfaces. This white, neutral pH adhesive dries clear and fast. It is fully reversible with water.
gUP: Do you work out of your home or do you have a studio space? Where is your company located?
KP: I started the business on the side (more as a hobby and just a way to reuse my old vinyl albums) and then it started to gain interest, and we decided to sell our house and move in with my parents at the ripe old ages of 30-something!
I was able to set up my workspace in their old barn and now I wake up and walk 20 feet to work everyday. The barn space works well, I store my records in old chicken coops! We are located in Telford, PA which is about 45 minutes outside of Philadelphia.
gUP: Do you have a crafty hero or craft idol?
KP: My Mom would be my craft idol and where I got my crafty genes from. Growing up she was always doing something crafty and I remember coming home from school and there would be a new wreath on the front door, blanket crocheted and pillow sewn on the sofa - all in the same day!
My Mom taught me recently how to sew and we have in the past taken pottery classes together. She has always encouraged me when I've come to her with a new project and given me invaluable input and has even allowed me to install a full working photography darkroom in the basement of her house! Our sewing machines are side-by-side and one of my favorite things to do is sit next to my Mom sewing... just finding the time to do so is hard with the new business!
photo courtesy of Vintage Vinyl