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  1. #1
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    Notebooks - your recommendations

    I'd like your tips on small and medium notebooks that would be good for lists and notes. I have a big stash of Scout Book notebooks in the checklist format, and I also just got some with the dot grids. Thanks to @Janine's generosity, I have some Field Notes notebooks to try, and I've also tried Rhodia in the past. I like the small size of Scout Books a lot, and their strong covers that don't get bent much even when tossed into a cafe bag. I usually use a Stabilo fine point marker or Sarasa Zebra 0.7 pen. Thanks!

  2. #2
    Forum Member al85's Avatar
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    I usually use Moleskines. They have a variety of sizes and page types (lined, grid, blank). Some are hard cover, some are soft cover, and others are a little thicker than card stock. I normally use ballpoint pen, Microns, or Sharpie pens and on occasion fine point Sharpies. Bleeding is relatively minimal, if any.
    Current set-up: Black Dyneema/Solar MCB, Iberian 3DOC, COWs in Solar & Steel.

    Wishing for more color variety in Dyneema. Can we get a blue again?

  3. #3
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    I have to admit, it's hard for me to write in Moleskines or even cheap Field journals, because it feels like desecrating a piece of artwork. I like blank (lined for some purposes, but blank is all purpose) 3x5 index cards, and I have a faux-leather mini-portfolio to hold them, which I picked up for a buck at the Texas state surplus store. I never feel guilty when writing on an index card, and they're nicely sortable, too. I'd love to see a micro Field Notes Journal made for them (or maybe for 4x6 cards instead).

  4. #4
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    While I like Clairefontaine and Rhodia notebooks for use with fountain pens for a daily utility type notebook I like the Molskine Cahier. The notebooks are small enough to fit in a pocket and the pages are sewn in with thread so they hold up pretty well. I generally use the squared grid version, but they also have lined and blank versions.

  5. #5
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    I don't like Moleskine paper. I use a Rhodia DotPad #16, which is small enough to be easy to carry and light, but with brilliant paper. I prefer it to the cream paper in the Webbie.

    Suggest checking out the Lechtrrum1917 too. Not quite as nice paper as the DotPad, but a really nicely made notebook with some nice features like numbered pages and detachable last dozen or so pages for making and discarding lists.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by BarryLee View Post
    While I like Clairefontaine and Rhodia notebooks for use with fountain pens for a daily utility type notebook I like the Molskine Cahier. The notebooks are small enough to fit in a pocket and the pages are sewn in with thread so they hold up pretty well. I generally use the squared grid version, but they also have lined and blank versions.
    @BarryLee and Others, I prefer the Volant series of Moleskines to the Cahiers. I like the flat bindings and the sturdier covers. An added bonus is that you can coordinate the colors of notebooks with your Tom Bihn bags -- even if these are Azalea and Turquoise, as in the case of MsMoon's Cafe Bags:
    Notebooks - your recommendations-1761d1317786110-new-swift-cafe-colors-azalea-turquoise-volant-jpg

    Most convenient size is the Small, but X-Small will fit in a Mini Organizer Pouch.

    HTH

    moriond

    ETA: I don't think this was mentioned earlier, but the last several sheets of both the Volant and Cahier series notebooks are dotted near the seam, so they can be neatly torn out if you need to write a note and hand it to someone without leaving jagged remains.
    Last edited by moriond; 12-22-2014 at 02:18 PM.

  7. #7
    Forum Member al85's Avatar
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    Seconding @moriond. I love the different colors too. I carry black and grey on my usually, but I have some brighter colors in the bigger notebooks. I love writing in them. Smilie
    Current set-up: Black Dyneema/Solar MCB, Iberian 3DOC, COWs in Solar & Steel.

    Wishing for more color variety in Dyneema. Can we get a blue again?

  8. #8
    Forum Member haraya's Avatar
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    I've started using the Moleskine notebooks covered in brown paper (card) that come in packs, for travel journals - they are small and light enough that I can bring a second one in case I fill up the first. (ETA: I think these are the Cahier ones also, but with a tan cover rather than black) The Moleskine Volant I use for more permanent records - each member of the family has a designated color, and I assign one notebook for school (my notes for parent-teacher conferences), another for doctor visits.

    (I don't seem to use my notebooks much for lists, or at least not any more - lists go in my iPhone, and are edited as I cross off items. Or if I need to remember something urgent, I'll write it on a bright-colored Post-it while I'm at my desk, then stick that to my phone, and transfer the Post-It to my dashboard when I get in the car.)

    There is a bookstore nearby that carries Moleskine, Leuchtturm1917, and Peter Pauper Press journals (I love these, have several different kinds for my bedside jottings). Leuchtturm are comparable to Moleskine - the covers seem a bit thicker than the hardbound Moleskines. (I prefer the Moleskine colorways, though.)

    But, my favorite notebook is a small leather-bound one (I believe it's the Jorgen style: ~ 4" x 6", lined pages, elastic closure) from Ordning & Reda that was gifted to me. It's just the right size to pop in my bag, and the leather provides protection for the pages but is flexible enough that I don't get poked by hard corners. I wish I could find a retailer nearby, I'd like to see if they have a refillable cover style. I can't tell if the Dixi style only takes notepads, or can also be used for notebook refills. (I asked my mom to keep an eye out while she's in Stockholm, but she said she found Moleskine in the stores. *sadface*)
    Last edited by haraya; 12-22-2014 at 03:07 PM.

  9. #9
    Forum Member monkeylady's Avatar
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    For notes on the go, I use teeny weeny Moleskines that fit in the inside pocket of my SE. Because pages are perforated, I can tear out and place in my A5 Filofax at home. I find the Filofax paper to be cheesy, and I plan to research papers and make my own inserts for next year. The Filofax is dedicated to the no-nonsense business of my life and contains all kinds of lists and project plans. It's not unusual for me to make notes or lists on a Rhodia pad and then migrate them to the Filofax. In my SE i also carry a slightly larger size than teeny weeny Moleskine for meal planning and shopping. I like having access to the week's menu while shopping. It allows me to be more flexible with grocery purchases when there is an unexpected good deal to be had. Finally, i keep a personal size Hobonichi techo cover with a little fat notebook of Hobonichi papers for my Spanish language journal. These are only available directly from Hobonichi in Japan. The paper is gorgeous and fountain pen friendly and blank.
    The stockpile keeps growing...I'm in serious trouble.

  10. #10
    Forum Member monkeylady's Avatar
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    Another thought...if you're not going to be migrating notes and lists to a mother ship notebook, a Midori notebook may be the ticket. It comes in both passport and a larger size called Traveller's notebook. I' ve never used it,but it looks like it would fit some circumstances to a tee.
    The stockpile keeps growing...I'm in serious trouble.

  11. #11
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    I appreciate all these tips. I used to aim for one notebook to hold all my lists, but I now have a combination of small notebooks for to-do lists, a larger paper calendar, iPhone calendar and Clear and Evernote (all critical for me), and keep experimenting with more styles. Also Post-It notes (like @timothy's index cards) are low-tech but reliable and easy to carry around.

  12. #12
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    @GoStanford, You could also try the Kokuyo Camous memo pad from jetpens.com referenced and linked in this post.

    moriond

  13. #13
    Forum Member al85's Avatar
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    @GoStanford, I don't know if this makes a difference, but Moleskine has Evernote-specific journals.
    Current set-up: Black Dyneema/Solar MCB, Iberian 3DOC, COWs in Solar & Steel.

    Wishing for more color variety in Dyneema. Can we get a blue again?

  14. #14
    Forum Member adalangdon's Avatar
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    Seconding the leuchtturm1917 rec. I haven't used their notebooks before but I have heard the paper is posh and, as @LJ50 says, has some list-friendly features.

  15. #15
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    I usually use Field Notes because I can carry them in my back pocket and they don't poke me in the butt when I sit down. I have my priorities.

    Also: I just got a Hobonichi Techo, which I'm looking forward to using. It's technically a planner of sorts (dated for 2015), and it's kind of thick, but it can be used in many different ways (the website has dozens of examples of how people use it—a lot of people keep lists). It's very aesthetically pleasing, inside and out, and the paper is Tomoe River, so all in all a really nice tactile experience. Unless you have access to the 2-3 Kinokuniya bookstores that stock it (the one in Chicago doesn't), you'll have to order it from Japan. That's either a plus or a minus depending on the person, I suppose.

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