Banditapple Carnet Handy Notebook – Handwritten Stationery Review


Paper: Banditapple Carnet Handy Notebook

Pen: Lamy Al-Star, Fine Nib

Ink: Diamine Grey

Notes: When announced these notebooks, I was intrigued. They were really cheap, and usually Goulet Pens does not steer me wrong with fountain pen friendly products. In this case, I disagree with the “friendliness”. When I got this pad, there was one thing I noticed right off the bat. It’s a pretty weird shape. I don’t know if I would consider it “handy” like the name says. If it was called the “odd” notebook, I think I might agree more with the nomenclature. I could get past the shape if the paper was great. Turns out, it wasn’t. I found it to be very toothy, even with nibs that perform very well on a wide range of papers. The paper is pretty thin too, making even Diamine Grey show through to the back of the page. The construction of the notebook is pretty decent, and it does lay almost all the way flat, which isn’t always the case with stitch-bound notebooks. The only decent writing experience on this paper was with a Bic ball point pen, which I normally don’t use unless I have to. If you happen to be someone who likes a LOT of feedback from your paper, then maybe check out Banditapple Carnet. If you’re like the majority of fountain pen users who like a smooth, nice paper, it’s best to steer clear. I decided to get scientific with this review. The last two picture I took through a loupe, and the difference in lines between the Banditapple Carnet and Rhodia are definitely noticeable.


Thanks for reading!



The only pen that was decently smooth was the Bic ballpoint. Yikes.

Close up, you can tell that the paper is rough. Nothing has a really crisp edge, especially the brush pen.

Bottom line says it all. I really wasn’t a fan of this notebook.
Got scientific with it. Using this loupe, you can see that the edges of the letters are quite rough. The next picture shows the Rhodia dotPad, where the edges of the line are noticeably smoother.

Rhodia dotPad – Much smoother lines than with the Banditapple Carnet

7 thoughts on “Banditapple Carnet Handy Notebook – Handwritten Stationery Review

  1. Thank you for this review. I have been looking at these notebooks because the fit the Midori Traveler’s notebook at a better price. But not worth it if I have to buy a ballpoint, yuck.

    1. Unfortunately, I just wasn’t a fan. It’s a shame because they’re priced right, and the construction is nice. It just didn’t perform well enough with fountain pens for me.

  2. I very much liked your scientific portion of the review. I did find mine quite toothy as well, though I suspect not as badly as yours. I wonder if they changed their paper or something. Mine didn’t bleed through but there was some show through. I guess how much you enjoy this depends what you intend to use it for! Not my favorite, really.

    1. Agreed, I may have been a bit harsh on this one, but the Lamy fine nib that was quite smooth on even cheap copy paper felt like a scratchy pencil on the Banditapple.

  3. Very nice and thorough review. I was interested in this particular size notebook as I think it IS quite “Handy.” Now, not so much…

    1. Thanks! I know other people like them, and they’re pretty low priced. A lot of people like those Midori Traveler’s notebooks, which have a similar weird shape. I wouldn’t write them off altogether, but there’s definitely better out there.

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