Category Archives: Stationery

Stationery Reviews – here you will find all of my reviews on fountain pen friendly paper products. Stationery reviews include notebook specs, a handwritten review, bleed through and show through performance, feel of the paper and several enlargeable pictures to show texture.

Field Notes “Ambition” – Winter 2014 Colors Edition – Review

Field Notes
Winter 2014 Colors Edition
“Ambition”

Field Notes Ambition Winter 2014 Review-10

Specs From Field Notes:

“Our old friends French Paper Co. of Niles, Michigan supplied “Olive,” “Wine,” and “Chocolate” 100# Speckletone for the covers, with production bouncing around the Midwest for the last few weeks. Printing started in Chicago’s suburbs at eDoc, then the covers were delivered to Nu Wave Diecutting & Finishing in downtown Chicago to emboss the cover logo. After a trip back to eDoc for bindery, they were trucked down to Liberty Book and Bible in Indianapolis for a process nearly as old as bookbinding, but all-new to us!”

Field Notes Ambition Winter 2014 Review-4

Notes:

Wow. That’s what I said when I saw these online for the first time. It’s like they made an edition for me. There is absolutely nothing I don’t like about these. The muted tones, the gold ink, the different (and very useful) rulings in each book, and the awesome gilded edges all add up to probably my favorite FN edition yet. The books each have a different ruling.

Field Notes Ambition Winter 2014 Review-6

The green is a ledger (which I’m using to help myself budget and save) a 56 week day book (which I’m using to micro-journal) and a standard graph book for everything else that doesn’t fit in the first two. I’m currently carrying the book in a Midori-style leather cover that holds the three books in place with elastic bands (Thanks to Cary Yeager of Fountain Pen Day for that!).

Field Notes Ambition Winter 2014 Review-2

Like I said before, there’s nothing about these books that I don’t like. The paper in Field Notes has been historically mediocre when using a fountain pen, but finer nibs and the right ink will work on these with no issues.

I’m probably going to be using gel though, specifically one of my favorites – the Zebra Sarasa 0.7mm in Dark Green. Like all of the “COLORS” editions, this one is limited so get over to Field Notes ASAP if you like what you see. I picked up three packs and I’m seriously considering more!

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This was not staged. I was really wearing all of the colors that this edition came in. Like I said, I think they were made for me.

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Field Notes Unexposed Fall 2014 Colors Edition – Review

Field Notes
Fall 2014 Colors Edition
“Unexposed”

 

Specs From Field Notes:

“Here’s what we can tell you: each “Unexposed” pack features three 5.5-inch x 3.5-inch 48-page memo books in an opaque black sleeve. The interior paper features our “reticle graph,” last seen in the “Night Sky” Edition from Summer 2013.”

 

Processed with VSCOcam with c2 preset  Field Notes Unexposed

Notes:

If you have yet to notice the trend of matte black, grey, and darker colored pens on the site, I dare you to look at some of the back posts. This edition of Field Notes is definitely not my cup of tea, but that’s not to say it’s not something fun and different. I was hoping for some more typical fall-themed colors and it appears that we got the polar opposite. The cool thing about the release is that they did not tell you what you were going to get. Instead of the usual “belly-band”, the books were sealed in a black paper envelope.

Field Notes Unexposed

There are 6 different colors, randomly inserted into the packs. I lucked out and got one of each across the three packs that I ordered. The super bright, Lisa Frank-ish colors aren’t going to see any use by me but they are a cool addition to the collection. The reticle graph ruling is cool as well, I really enjoyed it in the Night Sky edition from 2013. This was also the first round of photos from my new iPhone 6 – I think they definitely got the job done. What did you think of the Fall 2014 Colors edition?

Field Notes Unexposed

 

 

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Rhodia Ice 80th Anniversary Notepad – Review

Rhodia Ice Notepad Review

Rhodia ICE Notepad Review

 

Specs: 

  • 4″x6″
  • Silver / Grey Grid Lines
  • Bright white paper
  • Top Staple bound
  • White covers with metallic print

Rhodia ICE Notepad Review

Notes:

I’ve been a user of Rhodia paper for quite some time now. Why? Because it’s probably the best paper for use with fountain pens. The 80g paper is perfectly slick and makes any writing experience much smoother. For the 80th anniversary of the company, Rhodia released the Ice edition notebook. Typically when I think Rhodia, I think black and orange. Most of their line sports either a black or orange cover, this particular notebook breaks the mold. The pad has bright white covers, silver metallic logos and text on the back and silver/grey grid lines inside. I really like the way the notebook looks, and of course it’s great for writing on with fountain pen.

Rhodia ICE Notepad Review

I think I actually prefer the grey ruling over Rhodia’s standard violet ruling. It’s much less intrusive and really lets the color of the ink you’re using shine through without distraction. The pages are all micro-perforated for easy removal and the 4″ x 6″ notebook size is nice for throwing in a bag without taking up too much valuable room.

Rhodia ICE Notepad ReviewThe Rhodia Ice is a welcomed departure from the standard color schemes. The paper is exactly what you expect from Rhodia, and I think I’m going to be picking up a few more of these because of the grey ruling. They’re great notepads, and if you’re primarily a fountain pen user and have yet to try them, you’re really missing out! Huge thanks to my friends Sunny and Karen over at Exaclair for sending over the Rhodia Ice for review!

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Maruman Mnemosyne Word Cards – Review

Maruman Mnemosyne Word Cards

-Handwritten Review-

Specs: 

  • 4.1″ x 2.1″
  • 100 Sheets
  • Off-white paper
  • Sturdy metal ring keeps pages together
  • Heavy plastic covers
  • $4.95 from JetPens

Maruman Mnemosyne Word Cards Review

Notes:

Maruman makes my favorite notebook of all time, and I am always up for checking out other products they make. The Word Cards are a stack of small, heavy-stock paper cards with a single hole in them. Their purpose is for students to use to memorize words (hence the name), but they are the perfect tool to index fountain pen inks. I plan on doing this in the future, but for now, you can check out what Brad over at The Pen Addict did – it’s awesome. I’ve been keeping the stack of cards on my desk, and using them as sort of a more permanent Post-It note.

Maruman Mnemosyne Word Cards Review

They’re great for jotting down passwords, or any other notes that you need at a glance. They’re a handy size, the paper is nice, there’s no feathering or bleeding to be seen, and they look great too. I wish that the paper didn’t have quite as much texture to it, as it’s not the friendliest to finer fountain pen nibs. The paper is off-white, and it would be absolutely perfect for ink cataloging if it were a true white. Overall, for $4.95, the Word Cards are a great deal. Thanks to my friends over at JetPens for sending them over for review! Keep an eye out in the future for a massive ink catalog post, it’s coming.

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Check out JetPens for tons of awesome Japanese pens and stationery. Free shipping on orders over $25, and hitting that is pretty easy with all the great stuff they have. So thanks again!

Maruman Mnemosyne Word Cards Review

Maruman Mnemosyne Word Cards Review 

Kokuyo Campus Wide Notebook – Review

Kokuyo Campus Wide Notebook

-Handwritten Review-

Specs: 

  • Special B5 7.5″ x 10″
  • 6mm Lined Ruling, 35 lines / page
  • 70 sheets (140 Pages) of off-white paper
  • Date and page number headings
  • Heavy cardboard covers
  • Black double wire binding
  • $14.50 from JetPens

Handwritten Review Pictures:

Notes:

Kokuyo Campus Wide Notebook Review JetPensThe Kokuyo Campus Wide notebook looks pretty great. The olive green, heavy cardboard covers, paired with the black double wire binding makes for an awesome looking notebook. Huge thanks to my friends over at JetPens for sending over the book for review! Their site lists the book as being “fountain pen friendly” but I don’t think I’m with them on that 100%. Enjoy the review!

JetPens-Sponsored-Blog-Banner

Check out JetPens for tons of awesome Japanese pens and stationery. Free shipping on orders over $25, and hitting that is pretty easy with all the great stuff they have. So thanks again!

Appearance and Construction:

Kokuyo Campus Wide Notebook Review JetPensThe Campus Wide notebook in olive green looks awesome. All of the color and design choices in the book compliment each other so well. The off-white paper has a maroon upper and lower line, with light grey lines in between. The black wire binding adds some nice contrast and is a welcomed departure from the standard silver metal. I love the color palette of the notebook, dark green and maroon are two of my favorite colors, and coincidentally the first colors of fountain pen ink I had ever purchased (Diamine Evergreen and Diamine Oxblood).

Kokuyo Campus Wide Notebook Review JetPensThe notebook is also constructed quite well. The heavy stock rigid covers make it easy to write anywhere, for the handwritten portion of the review I was leaning on my lap. The double wire binding can take a beating, and aren’t easily bent, making the pages easy to turn. The Campus Wide notebook is a winner in terms of appearance and construction.

Performance and Feel:

Kokuyo Campus Wide Notebook Review JetPensThe 70g off-white paper is smooth, but it’s having quite the show through problem. There’s no feathering and ink dries on the page pretty quick. I imagine an extra fine nib would work okay, but if you’re using the paper to take notes with a fountain pen, you might not have the best time. This paper would definitely be better suited to gel or ballpoint pens (or any other non-liquid based ink).

Kokuyo Campus Wide Notebook Review JetPensThe paper is listed as fountain pen friendly, but I don’t think I agree. I would like to be able to use both sides of the sheet, but the showing/bleeding is a bit too much. I much prefer the Maruman Mnemosyne B5 notebook for a fountain pen friendly B5 notebook with off-white paper.

 

Color and Ruling:

Kokuyo Campus Wide Notebook Review JetPensThe off-white paper is easy on the eyes. Mix that with the wubtle grey micro-dot ruling and maroon accents, and you have a really nice looking page. There’s a spot in the header for the date and page number, which is a nice touch. The 6mm rule nicely compliments the size of the page, as well as my handwriting. It’s slightly narrower than the 7mm rule I’m used to, but I still like it. There are other versions of the book with different colored covers with slightly different ruling spacing. Even though the paper is off-white, it still does a good job of showing off the color of the ink. Once again, it’s a shame that the paper isn’t slightly more ink-resistant, as I really like the features of the book.

 

Pros:

  • Great looking book
  • Perfect size (B5)
  • No feathering
  • Rigid covers

Cons:

  • Significant show-though
  • Wider nibs will bleed through

Conclusion:

Kokuyo Campus Wide Notebook Review JetPensOh how I wish the paper in this book was slightly heavier. If you don’t mind using only one side of the page, you may like the book. It’s well designed and I like the color palette quite a bit. It’s understated and simple, right up my alley. There’s no feathering and it’s smooth to write on, but the bleed through is just a bit too much for me to give it the seal of approval. If you need a great looking notebook to use with other types of pens, definitely consider this one. Thanks again to JetPens for sending over the notebook for review!

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