In January I broke out my Cool Notes Notebook in red from teNeues. The hardcover is red, but what is even more special is the inside cover (pictured above) which is Bright Red and Yellow Zebra Print. It is awesome and totally brightens up your day. The notebook itself is a bright red and is a great alternative to a moleskine notebook. In this particular notebook the left hand page is blank and the right hand page is lined which make it perfect for this month’s monthly notebook. Other features include the ribbon bookmark, elastic closure and pocket at the back of the notebook. Again reminding me of a moleskine notebook.
There is a wide range of designs/patterns and colours available (both for the hard cover and the inside cover). See a sample of the range on their website.
Writing in the notebook feels great, the paper is smooth – I use my stabilo pen collection which glide over the page (and leaves minimal bleed through (pictured above). The pages of course are versatile and cope with writing, drawing, doodling etc – everything I pretty much need from a Monthly Notebook. For those of you who don’t already know – my Monthly Notebooks are notebooks that I carry daily to jot down notes and ideas. Each month I try to fill a different notebook with such goodies. You can find the full list (dating back to 2009) here.
Another monthly notebook from earlier in the year which I had not got round to writing about yet because I hated it. The Travel Passport Sized Notebook from Paperchase with Front Pocket was the usual bargain price for an A6 notebook at £1.75 but the paper inside the notebook was just wrong.
Unfortunately when the notebooks are wrapped in plastic in store you cannot see the paper to make a proper judgment on whether you want to make the purchase. So when I bought the notebook I was simply tempted by the purple colouring and the front pocket and cute fastening. The paper is squared (which I normally love) but the squares were just too large (1cm) and when writing in this notebook I just could not seem to get what I wanted on the page. It is rare for me to get exasperated by a notebook – but I did – and it is just as equally exasperating as I can’t seem to explain why.
So simply put, ignore this one and opt for the plain paper version instead – it is much more satisfying. Of course if you like large squares (1cm) this might be just want you need.
Today is a bit of an odd one. An address book.
Who uses those anymore I hear you ask.
Well, I got it as a gift from my grandparents and thought I would add it to the blogging pile. The cover has a velvety feel (the black lines and magnetic closure are velvety) and personally I find the swirling patterns rather beautiful.
If it was an ordinary notebook I would be using it in a flash, without a second thought. Now I have to come up with a way to use an address book without using it as an address book…
Maybe password and logins? or a LinkedIn backup?
Last month I wrote about my monthly notebook for May the Leuchtturm 1917 Jottbook.
At the time of writing this was a fresh and new notebook, now it is almost full (and I am not even half way through the month yet). That is clearly a good sign.
If I like it, I use it.
I have found myself speed through the pages during a quiet moment. I have also taken the opportunity to carry out a quick ink test (although I fear my fountain pens seem to have gone walkies as people keep borrowing my pens).
As you can see very little bleeding – in fact the only bleed through is the permanent marker. My writing instrument of choice appears to be a mechanical pencil at the moment despite the pots (and pots) of pens I seem to have on my desk.
Quaderno Italiano is exactly what it says it is – a quaderno (exercise book) from Italy. If you used these sort of thing at school, it will really take you back. Thin small book, with space to write your name, teacher and subject on the front cover and on the inside. There is even a box at the back of the book with the times tables.
This note book has a dark cover, which is just thickened paper, quite flexible and with flimsy flickable pages inside, edged in red which is a nice touch – like I said before it is basically a school exercise book which it part of the novelty of it. Once again this notebook is part of my daily collection of notebooks. I use this particular one for drafting blog posts while commuting if inspiration strikes.
The particular one that I bought is the Maths version with squared / grid paper as can be seen in the photos below, but the notebook is also available in plain and lined paper.
As for the paper, here I’ve been writing in basic blue ink fountain pen, and it writes well.
So why get it? Well for one they are reasonably priced at a few quid (I got mine in Waterstones), light and easy to carry around, not to mention the novelty factor of being a School exercise book and red edged. To top it of, it has been admired on numerous occasions because not a lot of people have them, yet.
As I mentioned before Christmas I bought a V&A Design For Silk
notebook from Waterstones:
Small Soft Notebook
100 Lined, Hand Sewn FSC Pages
The main attraction of this notebook is the feel of it, soft and silky. The cover itself is very flexible and can bend right round. Again like a Rosehip, is the right size for placing in your bag.
The design, the second attraction is called Floral Decoration and is a textile design by JD Cornuaud, Britain 1800-1900.
As for writing in the notebook. Well I’ve been using this notebook as a career log – but more on that later. I used 2 main pens in this notebook – a basic blue ink fountain pen and a black black point. Both work very neatly, the paper is smooth to write on, and is reasonably thick as the impression doesn’t go through to the other side.
Downsides? Well there is not much wrong with them other than the flexibility of the cover means that the front cover folds up after use, the cover also stains a bit. but relatively minor points.
(Photo Credit: Notebook Stories)
I’ve had my eye on one of these for a while and have of course been waiting for the new year to debate whether to make such a purchase. However, help is on the way if you are like me and lust after one of these babies:
Notebook Stories has done a great another great review of this planner and even has some to give away. So check it out if you haven’t done so already.
Good Luck Everyone.
One of my colleagues is going to Australia travelling for 9 weeks. I got her a Wanderlust Travel Journal as a going away gift. In part I thought that this beautifully designed notebook would get her inspired to write something, or at least treasure her memories.
This A5 notebook is vibrant, and colourful with the travel theme playing throughout the whole book rather than simply being an image on the cover, making it a notebook with a difference. See more photos here. There is a mixture of blank and squared pages as well as space for addresses in the back. Great for getting someone who has turned their back on the written word into notebooks.
I bought my notebook at Waterstones for £10, but the notebook can also be purchased online at Amazon.
I had great visions of doing a proper notebook shopping trip when I discovered I needed a notebook to use as a log book for my sign language classes. Unfortunately rainy weather put my plans on hold and today I found myself picking up a notebook in the train station.
Signature, in case you’ve not come across it before is WH Smith’s own brand moleskine-alike notebook available in a range of sizes and colours. The one I bought is the A5 (known as large) brown notebook, priced at £9.99. My favoured colour however is that of mulberry - beautiful notebook, but unfortunately they were sold out.
It is a soft covered, very flexible, giving it a nice worn feel even though you still have that pristine paper feel, best of both worlds. It is narrow ruled which may put some people off, but I think it works beautifully, the paper is 80gsm quality paper, has a nice smooth feel, for those of you who need to like the touch sensation like me. I have not tried out a fountain pen on the paper being more of a bic pen user of late but I believe most pens are fine, although some fountain pens go through. But as I’ve only begun to use this notebook today, I’ll let you know how it develops.
With the pending postal strikes from Royal Mail I thought it might be nice to look back to a time when I remember Royal Mail to be reliable.
I bought this little red “royal mail” notebook entitled “thoughts ideas and actions” in a second hand bookshop or charity shop about 10 years ago. To this date it is one of my favourite notebooks, providing lots of inspiration. It could be argued that it is not strictly speaking a notebook, but the principle is the same – it is to encourage people to write.
Inside the notebook is a wide range of postcards, coloured paper and inspirational messages and quotes to fit various moods and occasions. A great idea and a great product. I don’t think they do anything like this now, although they still do a great range of fun stamps.
I will keep a look out for similar products, as there seems to be a gap in the market.