WSH Travel Sketch Pad
WSH Travel Sketch Pad
WSH Travel Sketch Pad
WSH Travel Sketch Pad
WSH Travel Sketch Pad
WSH Travel Sketch Pad

WSH Travel Sketch Pad

Regular price £24.00

LIMITED AVAILABILITY - only 12 pieces available. 

Vintage, 1950s, handmade watercolour paper, leather bound as simply as can be.

The real hero of this story is the beautiful handmade paper sandwiched between bronze coloured, jewel finished leather.

We wanted to make something practical and as inexpensive as possible so that you can experience the joy of using some of the most wonderful paper ever made, whilst protecting your work with a traditional, hard wearing, leather cover.

We first tried this out  in our real-life store in Stromness (not online), and thought no more about it. These were bought and within days we were contacted by some of the buyers who were so taken aback by the quality and no-frills practicality that they wanted to buy more and so, here we are! 


The paper was made in the 1950s by WS Hodgkinson at Wookey Hole in Somerset, England, a company that specialised in making the highest quality paper for fine-art and publishing from the 1850s until 1972.

Hodgkinson, in the classic Victorian paternalistic way, build a village for his workers at Wookey Hole which included a school, housing and social clubs. 

To find out more about these legendary papermakers, we made a blog about WSH, outlining their history and the types of paper they made.

There is a little video of an advertising brochure in the photographs which gives a little bit of info and a feel for the company. 

You can find that blog here.

We bought this paper, direct from an employeee of the mill, who, in 1972, with the mill closed and the assets being sold off, and with just minutes before this pile of paper was due to be sent away, repulped and converted into South American currency, bought it himself and took it home.

He kept and used some of this paper, until his retirement, which is when VPCo purchased it, around 8 years ago. It was and remains our largest ever single purchase of vintage paper. 

Over the course of a few years, we sold it, sheet by sheet, or used it in Properly Made Books until we ran out of it. or almost all of it, but every now and then we come across some which has been stashed away and forgotten about.   

The paper in these simple bindings came from such a stash - a forgotten pile of cut down, variously sized sheets, previously used for a project we completed a long time ago.

We sorted through this pile, cut them down to a uniform size, rounded the corners, a measure which helps to reduce raggedness when the book is being used or in transit in a pocket or bag and assembled them into these little books.


There are two or maybe three papers used in these bindings but they all share some common denominators - they're all handmade using cotton rag and all are gelatine sized. 

The weights of the papers vary from about 120gsm up to 180gsm and the textures vary from NOT (slightly textured) through to CP (cold pressed, very textured). None of the papers are HP (hot pressed, smooth textured).


We decided to make this series of books as simply as we possibly could and so we  gathered the paper, sandwiched it between two pieces of leather and joined it up with a screwpost. 

The screw post is removable so to take out a drawing to give it away, sell or frame, all you have to do is unscrew the post, take out the paper and reassemble the binding. It takes about 30 seconds max.

The WSH Travel Sketcher is pocket friendly in both size and structure. It's a 4-inch square book and much like a wallet, when in a side or back trouser pocket, it's flexible so very comfortable 

Inside are 24 sheets (48 sides) of this beautiful paper which works wonderfully well with watercolour, acrylic and gouache paint, drawing inks, pencils, pastels and most other media. The papers inside the books are a random mix of all the origin sheets.

We think this is the perfect summer companion for artists who value best quality paper.


Paper - WS Hodgkinson cotton rag, watercolour paper, made in the 1950s. 120 to 180gsm, textured. 24 sheets, 48 sides

Binding - Leather covers, bound with a removable screw post.

Size - 4 x 4 inch, 101 x 101 mm.


UK £3, USA, CAN, AUS, NZ £10, EUROPE £8.85

WSH Travel Sketch Pads are shipped in a flat postal box.

Orders placed combinding other products such as printed paper will increase shipping charges and we will have to contact you to ask for a separate shipping payment.