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Q: What is a Leather Family? Thanks, Rob
A: A leather family means different things to different people. At it's core, a leather family is really just having a group of kinky folks who desire to be referred to as a Family. You fill in the blanks from there.

Our Leather Family came into existence in 1999. We were a small group of close friends attending the Black Rose BR99 weekend and attended a leather family panel hosted by our friend Lolita Wolf and her family. After listening to what they had to say, we were struck by the fact that we were already a "family" in spirit, and that we should become one in name.

Our family is similar to a regular family. We add members only when we find someone that we feel we want to be tied to for life. As far as sex, we do not all have sex with each other. Some of us are partnered and Poly, but that has nothing to do, per se, with the family. If one of us stops playing with a slave, that person is still in the family and someone we care about. As a matter of fact, just because someone is one of our slaves, that doesn't mean they are automatically in the family. Our group of original members makes final decisions on such things with input from everyone in the family.

Other Families are different. Some are much looser and some way more strict. Some are built around one or just a few people. The model of "Daddy & his Boys" for example is pretty much the model that started what we now call leather families back in the 50's. Gay men who had come back from WWII were influenced by the War itself and the culture at the time and developed the "leather scene" as we know it today. These groups of Gay Men felt more connected to each other then, simply being friends and wanted to have a family.

The bottom line is... there are no rules to BDSM or a leather family other then treating each other "Consensually". So we encourage people to build a family that works for them.

Q: I'm a queer submissive college student who finally has the freedom to explore bdsm. (recently out of my parents house and a very vanilla relationship) woohoo! My only hesitation is that I'm vegan. I want to be hurt without hurting animals. Is there a non-leather bdsm community? What about non-leather bondage and toys? Thanks "M" p.s. your website (especially the checklist) is a wonderful resource!
A: Hi M...

The only silly questions are the ones you don't ask! Thanks for the kind words and welcome to our world ;)

I don't know of actual organizations of people who get together and take part in BDSM activities who are strictly Vegan... but there are lots of shops that offer Vegan items!

Here is a whole online erotic store for Vegans:,

Long time flogger and whip makers Adam and Gillian have a Vegan page: Adam & Gillian's Vegan Page,

And, The Smitten Kitten has a nice line of animal friendly harnesses and more:

Q: I recently downloaded the "Sovereign House BDSM Checklist" from your web site... very comprehensive. Can you direct me to a list of definitions, as I am not familiar with all of the terms that are used. Thanks GP
A: Here are some resources on the web that we've found.,

Q: How can I find a BDSM group or family in my area?
A: Here is a web site that you can visit that has a terrific list of BDSM resources accross the USA.'s USA List

Q: I'm from out of the NYC area and obviously missed your talk at TES that you gave in January. Is there anyway you can possibly give me some more information on this subject. It sounds really interesting.
A: Master J replies: You are referring to the TES seminar I did on 1/15 called "The most important toy in your bag..... YOUR BRAIN". This is my favorite subject to speak on as I love the mental side of the scene. We do have my handout available on this website, you can access it here. Also a little secret.... after having many people suggest it, I am considering writing a book on the topic. So as that concept progresses SH visitors will be the first to know.

Q: How does one get involved with Sovereign House? Is this a membership type of organization or do you need to be invited in?
A: Great question... posed by a good friend of ours (you know who you are LOL). Sovereign House is not an organization like TES or Black Rose or The Boy Scouts or Young Republicans etc etc... There is nothing to join... no dues to be paid.

To explain Sovereign House is a bit complicated as we are still very young and deciding what exactly we are as we go along.

What we do know is the original 6 founders felt a special kinship with each other that went far beyond usual friendships. This is mostly due to the fact that we are all already related as either husband/wife, boyfriend/girlfriend, Master/slave, long time friend or yes, believe it or not... sister/brother. Hence we were already a "family" in spirit and we felt we should become one in name to help us serve the BDSM community and each other.

Once we started the family, one of our first problems was... "How do we/do we add new members"? We decided that we would never find or even want to find others with the same sense of commitment that the founders have for one another, but we WOULD want to add people to the family that we felt were like-minded souls that would still be part of our lives 10 or 20 years down the road!

So we have decided that we will take our time and be very careful about adding new people into the family. Each new member will be someone that at least one or more of our members feel "Married" to in one sense of the word or another. Just like a real family!

This all said we also want to find a way to honor our close friends as well as the people we admire and respect in the scene. We are working on a "Friends of the Family" idea that we hope will help us do this... we just don't want it to come across wrong and sound pompous so we are discussing it currently.

So, to answer your question... if for some reason you feel you want to associate yourself with a bunch as insane as ourselves I strongly recommend that you check yourself into the first quality mental institution you come across! But if I can't talk you out of it and/or you feel strongly about being part of or even deciding if you want to be part of Sovereign House, then know that Sovereign House is about friendship, loyalty & BDSM and the way into our family is to follow this website, communicate with us, hang out with us, be part of our lives and become our close friends.

Q: Is there a heirarchy to your Family?
A: Yes... a loose one. For most things we are all equal. However, the original 6 members are sort of like a "board of directors". The original 6 are the ones that must agree on new members and family policy if a vote is needed. We also have a Matrarch and Patriarch who are not "bosses" but more like the figurative "parents" of the family. In an EMERGENCY the Matriarch and Patriarch will make a decision if there is no time to consult all the founders.

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