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First Look At "art Of The Grid" Notepads


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#1 moylek

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 00:12

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'Twen Magazine" notepad with test pens

NB: click images below for links to much larger versions.

I came across these puzzling notepads at Phidon Pens in Galt, Ontario this weekend: oversized and printed with odd grids. But they were on clearance at only $5 each and had an interesting story: the rulings are taken from the design grids of famous or influential publications: the Gutenberg Bible, The Guardian, and Twen Magazine among others.

The notepads are produced by Art of the Grid, who make both notepads and wall shovels - but who seem to be primarily about design geekery.

The "Twen Magazine" pad is not so far off from a regular notepad: 10.5" x 13.5" sheets with a ruled area of 9.5" x 12".

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"Twen Magazine" notepad in situ

But then there is "The Guardian": at ca. 14.5" x 24.5", it's not a "notepad" in the conventional sense. But it does fit in a standard desk blotter, and one of the two pads we bought will be going into my wife's classroom for just that purose.

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"The Guardian" notepad sheet in a desk blotter

And what of the quality of the paper? It's fairly lightweight - about like standard copier/printer paper - and a palish cream. It was just fine to write on - not a revelation, but not a problem. Except that I had feathering problems with my Montblanc 144 with Diamine Imperial Blue. The other pen and ink combinations had no feathering or bleed through: Pelikan M800 (F) with Pelikan Blue; Lamy Safari (1.1 italic) with Pelikan Black; Parker 51 with Noodlers Midnight Blue / Aurora Blue (a happy accident).

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"Twen Magazine" sheet: Pelikan M800 F with Pelikan Blue; Montblanc 144 with Diamine Imperial Blue.

But what to do with this paper? I’m sure that more creatively limber minds than mind could come up with all sorts of ways to use it. So far I have come up with the following ...
  • write a letter.

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"Twen Magazine" sheet with four pen/ink combinations; click to see details in full size.

Folded in half, the "Twen" sheets give two sheets of ca. 6.5" x 10.5" of widely-spaced lines: with my somewhat irregular handwriting, that produces a relatively neat and readable page of script, but without the childish look of ruled pages. This won't fit quite so much as I would put on a blank sheet of US Letter paper, but it's more than on a typical notecard - so it's actually quite a convenient size, if somewhat unconventional.

And then the whole sheet can be folded into a ca 4.5" x 7.5" envelope.

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"Twen Magazine" sheet folded into envelope - front

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"Twen Magazine" sheet folded into envelope - back

This is not a paper for all occasions, but I think I'll use it for short letters now and again. And I'll probably pull it out any time I need to organize thoughts or plans into tables or clumps.


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"Twen Magazine" grid description

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"The Guardian" grid description

Edited by moylek, 04 February 2013 - 14:40.

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Kenneth Moyle
Hamilton, Ontario

#2 macaddicted

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Posted 04 February 2013 - 05:57

It's revenge of design school.

Have fun with it. Use the grid layout to write in blocks of varying size. Write your salutation in the middle of the page and the letter around it. It's what grids are for.
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