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B&n Ecosystem Journals?


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#1 AlaskanWriter

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Posted 27 September 2009 - 11:34

Just came across these listed as new at Barnes and Noble online;
Ecosystem at Barnes & Noble
Blank, lined or grid paper, plus planners in several colors, green, black, turquoise, pink, and my favorite, a dreamy orange. :) They sound good to me, will be looking for them the next time I'm in store.

Anyone seen them or tried them? FP friendly paper?

The product blurb from this one;
Orange blank pages journal

"""Made of 100% post-consumer recycled paper, the ecosystem flexi cover journal is a great place to record your ideas, inspirations, plans, and dreams. The books are made of beautiful, smooth, bright-white, eco-friendly paper and include special touches like a back pocket, perforated pages, organic cotton bookmark, and an elastic closure. Plus, an ecosystem journal is 100% made in the USA. In the back of each book, there is an ID number that allows you to track, via ecosystemlife.com, where the components of your book were made and how to recycle them if you so choose."""

Gary.
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#2 leicamaster

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Posted 27 September 2009 - 12:11

I saw them at the store 2 days ago. It was just a moleskine rip-off, havent tried them but I expect them to be good.
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#3 Bill

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Posted 28 September 2009 - 10:55

So soon on the heels of the release of the Rhodia webnotebooks, too.

I've been using the pocket-sized cahier "essay" notebooks for a couple of weeks and just started using one of the black hard-cover A5 versions. The paper is white, not ivory, so the true colors of nice inks can be showcased. It's too early for a full review, but so far it looks like there is much less bleed-through than Moleskines. The recycled paper is more absorbant than Rhodia, yet does not seem to feather much. So far, so good.

Bill

#4 JB213

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Posted 29 September 2009 - 22:50

I've been looking for a recycled/eco-friendly version of a Moleskine for a while, so I'm super excited to read about these! Thanks for the heads up!

#5 zubipen

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Posted 29 September 2009 - 22:53

It looks nice. But it will need the proof of the pen and the ink
Write, write, write. Use your pens not your fingers !!!




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#6 biffybeans

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Posted 30 September 2009 - 03:09

I am going to have to go and pick up one of these for review.

Edited by biffybeans, 30 September 2009 - 03:18.


#7 lovemy51

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Posted 01 October 2009 - 08:44

I am going to have to go and pick up one of these for review.


our hero!! thx, looking forward to that review!!
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#8 AlaskanWriter

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Posted 01 October 2009 - 15:18

Yes indeed, Definetally looking forward to that review!
I always check for a BiffyBeans blog review before getting new paper/journals..

G.
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#9 leicamaster

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Posted 01 October 2009 - 20:33

Yes indeed, Definetally looking forward to that review!
I always check for a BiffyBeans blog review before getting new paper/journals..

G.



I know her blog is great.
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#10 leicamaster

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Posted 01 October 2009 - 20:33

Yes indeed, Definetally looking forward to that review!
I always check for a BiffyBeans blog review before getting new paper/journals..

G.


love her art too :D
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#11 biffybeans

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Posted 02 October 2009 - 02:15

You guys are making me blush....

I went to my local B&N yesterday and they did not have these - they have a different eco line called Pistachio. 100% post consumer/soy ink/ most all were spiral bound and they were made in Canada. I'll check back later...

#12 jimhughes

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Posted 02 October 2009 - 04:19

I ordered some On line on Sunday. Free Shipping. Here today via UPS 3 day on the B & N dime. You might try that as a current source. Lots of colours and size choices. Jim

#13 Bill

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Posted 03 October 2009 - 12:55

Not all the Barnes & Noble stores are carrying them. An employee at one of their larger stores in Grand Rapids, Michigan used the phrase "prepaid order" in explaining why they did not have them. I'm not sure what that means, besides the obvious implication that if they don't sell well they eventually could be deeply discounted because the store cannot send back unused stock. That may also explain why the original Chinese B&N Moleskine clones went away.

In the stores where I have seen them, the displays are free standing and located near the checkout area.


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#14 Writing Uphill

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Posted 05 October 2009 - 23:54

YES, I THINK THIS IS THE REAL MOLESKINE KILLER!

I just picked up a small flexible cover one of these and so far it's excellent. The construction seems very good and similar to the Rhodia Webnotebook (I looked closely at the hardcover, as well). I like the cover material better than the Webnotebook, and just as much as the Mole -- it's a little tacky, somewhere between the Mole and the Webnotebook. The band feels great and looks sturdy. The pocket looks sturdy but there is no cloth reinforcement in the folds. The book is essentially the same dimensions as the Mole, but between a Mole and a Webnotebook in thickness. The book lays as flat and open, like a Mole, but appears much better constructed.

The paper: The paper is 100% recycled and white. It is very, very smooth. I have tried my Lamy Safari F and Pilot Custom 74 F, both with Herbin Perl Noir, and there is no sign of feathering or bleed through (this ink, in my experience, tends to not like cheap paper, so I am impressed). I also have no real show through -- no worse than Rhodia paper. I do think the Lamy lays a slightly more consistent line on the Webnotebook than the Ecosystem, but it was a tie with the Pilot and both were quite good. The pages are lightly and tightly perforated -- they come out with careful tugging but I don't think will separate on their own -- this is a killer feature for me since it means no more sticky note refills. The lines go all the way to the edge, are spaced at around a quarter inch, and are a very thin dark gray. The paper reminds me of a Clairefontaine book I had a few years ago that was similar but 4x6.

The store had the full assortment of the soft and hardcover high page count books, with the softcover looking like Mole clones and the hardcover looking more like Webnotebook clones (thicker covers that extend further from the page edges -- same binder, maybe?). One thing that was a disappointment was the grid versions -- the spacing is half of Mole (two lines to one line of standard ruled) and too dark for a grid this tight. Other than that, these look like winners. Also, 100% sourced and manufactured in the US but only $9.00! I'm not a snob about stuff being made in America, but I am a big fan of full disclosure about environmental impact and working conditions, which we get with the Ecosystem. I did not see any of the cahiers or inserts, so can't comment on those.

I'd say that for the price and apparent quality (I'll know more after a few weeks of use, folks should not hesitate to give these a try.

#15 biffybeans

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Posted 06 October 2009 - 03:45

Aw c'mon.... you can't call it a Mole killer with only one ink tested. ;o) And Mole's (and Webbies) have off white paper which in my opinion, are much easier on the eyes.)I also ran a poll here earlier this year and off-white was clearly the winner with about 260 people responding.) I went through a Kunst & Papier plain journal & a hardcover Clairefontaine (both bright white) & I couldn't WAIT to be done with them.

Pentalic makes a Mole-clone with the most perfect off-white paper but the cover has a rounded spine & it won't lie flat. With better attention to detail & form, it could have been a MK - except it's not USA made.

YES, I THINK THIS IS THE REAL MOLESKINE KILLER!



#16 Writing Uphill

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Posted 06 October 2009 - 04:28

I actually find the Webnotebook to be too ivory. Yes, one ink test out of two pens doesn't make a good test. I was actually hoping my review would get you to do one of your super thorough tests for all of us :) . I will say that for now, I'm quite content. I am rather fickle, though, when it comes to notebooks, which is why I usually make my own.

#17 biffybeans

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Posted 06 October 2009 - 14:52

LOL! As soon as I get my hands on one I will review. I did find them for sale at one of 3 local B&N.

I actually find the Webnotebook to be too ivory. Yes, one ink test out of two pens doesn't make a good test. I was actually hoping my review would get you to do one of your super thorough tests for all of us :) . I will say that for now, I'm quite content. I am rather fickle, though, when it comes to notebooks, which is why I usually make my own.



#18 AlejoPlay

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Posted 13 January 2010 - 15:13

I just bought a pocket sized ruled softcover in orange the other day. I tried my Sapporo with Sailor Blue, my LAMY Vista with Sheaffer Skrip and my Pelikan M205 with PR American Blue. Granted all well behaved inks and none of those pens is a big gusher, but no feathering or bleed.

#19 Randal6393

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Posted 13 January 2010 - 16:13

Yes, I bought a pair of these -- small, pocket-sized. Good (but not outstanding) paper, recycled and recyclable. Made in America. The paper is heavier in weight than most pocket notebooks (say 20 lb versus 16 lb) and writes well. But that increases the thickness by about 20 %. Almost too thick for a "pocket notebook".

All in all, a good buy and worth investigating.

Enjoy,

Yours,
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#20 AlaskanWriter

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Posted 14 January 2010 - 07:19

Nice to hear it!

I'd forgotten this completely, saw the post and thought "did I post that?" Lol...
Should go see if the local store has any again..

G.
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#21 officesupplygeek

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 01:52

I did a review of the ecosystem notebooks a while ago, and REALLY liked them. The quality of construction is awesome, and they do a good job of handling fountain pens, and other types of ink. I also selected them as one of my top office supplies of 2009, in the green category. I honestly dont think you will find a better environmentally friendly notebook anywhere, and it certainly even rivals some non-green notebooks.

These are definitely worth checking out if you are looking for a new notebook.

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#22 park

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 02:15

:hmm1: My B&N pushes these like crazy. If you're in the Moleskine section, the clerks come by and try to steer you over to the Ecosystem section - happened to me three times in the last 6 months.

I did a "feel test" but the paper didn't seem all that impressive, but now after seeing officesupplygeek's review, maybe I'll give it a go.

Love your blog! :wub:

#23 officesupplygeek

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 02:22

:hmm1: My B&N pushes these like crazy. If you're in the Moleskine section, the clerks come by and try to steer you over to the Ecosystem section - happened to me three times in the last 6 months.

I did a "feel test" but the paper didn't seem all that impressive, but now after seeing officesupplygeek's review, maybe I'll give it a go.

Love your blog! :wub:


I hate the aggressive sales approach like that, so annoying. Thanks for the kind words regarding my blog.

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#24 lefty928

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Posted 27 February 2010 - 03:22

Not seeing any info on whether they lie flat ...Posted Image
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#25 carpedavid

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Posted 03 March 2010 - 12:42

Not seeing any info on whether they lie flat ...Posted Image


Mostly. I'm working through one of the large hardback ruled notebooks right now, and my one quibble (aside from the microperf paper, which I haven't yet decided is a blessing or a curse) is that where the signatures meet (I think), the binding adhesive spreads up to about where the microperf stops, and is impossible to pry apart without ripping the paper. Thus, I'll be happily writing away in a flat notebook, flip the page, and then have to deal with the paper acting funny for two pages. Now, I've only purchased the one hardback, so it could be a fluke in the construction process; I'd like to hear from others who've used these if they're seeing the same thing.

It's not a deal-breaker, as the paper and overall construction is otherwise very nice, but for someone who won't use a notebook that doesn't lie flat, it can be annoying.

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#26 metronorth

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Posted 25 April 2012 - 17:06

I know i'm a little late to the post here - but I have tried several of the ecosystem journals (both plain/unlined). Some of my sentiments echo what others have posted. I apologize in advance for "plagiarizing" or not giving you credit if so.

Pros:
* Slightly cheaper than the Moleskine counterparts
* Made in USA with recycled content
* Loved the fact you can lookup when and where your journal was made with the code on the back.

Cons:
* Paper bleeds (especially with waterier inks like Lamy or Waterman)
* Paper is not very smooth
* Ribbon attached with glue (mine fell out)
* Material on cover has a cheap feel to it
* doesn't fold flat
* Paper is not the same on both sides (one side is smoother and glossier)
* I found the microperfs annoying over time.
* Paper was too white (bright)

In Summary: The Moleskine (albeit made in China) product are a far superior product at a comparable pricepoint. They just perform like they have been honed with the input of the customers. The Leuchtturm1917 is a step up from the Moleskine with paper quality and the Quo Vadis with its clairfontaine paper (and made in the USA) is king.

Suggestions: B&N - you should use your competitors products, read blogs and go back to the drawing board. There is a great opportunity for success here (or as long as we're using pens and paper - which I guess if unfortunately about 30 years).

#27 theothermle

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Posted 25 April 2012 - 21:07

Cons:
* Paper bleeds (especially with waterier inks like Lamy or Waterman)
* Paper is not very smooth
* Paper is not the same on both sides (one side is smoother and glossier)
* I found the microperfs annoying over time.

Interesting. I have one of these for my journal and I haven't had any bleeding, even with Waterman Blue Black in my wettest pen. Even my most bleeding inks don't bleed through. I have to say that I disagree that a Moleskine is anyway superior. I do find the difference in the smoothness of the sides of the paper and the micro-perforations a little annoying, but I thought that the paper was far superior to any of the Moleskines I've head. Maybe you've had experiences with better batches of Moleskines than I have? Oh, and by the way, these are not a Barnes and Noble product. They sell them, but so do Staples and Amazon.

#28 threeamigos

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Posted 26 April 2012 - 00:05


Cons:
* Paper bleeds (especially with waterier inks like Lamy or Waterman)
* Paper is not very smooth
* Paper is not the same on both sides (one side is smoother and glossier)
* I found the microperfs annoying over time.

Interesting. I have one of these for my journal and I haven't had any bleeding, even with Waterman Blue Black in my wettest pen. Even my most bleeding inks don't bleed through. I have to say that I disagree that a Moleskine is anyway superior. I do find the difference in the smoothness of the sides of the paper and the micro-perforations a little annoying, but I thought that the paper was far superior to any of the Moleskines I've head. Maybe you've had experiences with better batches of Moleskines than I have? Oh, and by the way, these are not a Barnes and Noble product. They sell them, but so do Staples and Amazon.


I've had great success using these notebooks. They do open flat and the paper is way better than Moleskine. I've had no problems with bleed through with many different pen/ink combinations. I really can only use fine nibs and dry ink with Moleskine. I happen to like the micro-perforated pages since I do like to remove pages sometimes. The paper is more absorbent than Moleskine or Rhodia, but that also means it tends to dry a lot faster too. I do like the white paper vs cream color. So, I would have to say these notebooks are better than Moleskine for fountain pens. I guess everybody has their own preferences so it's great that we have choices.

Edited by threeamigos, 26 April 2012 - 09:18.


#29 mrapollo

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Posted 30 April 2012 - 09:15

Cons:
* Paper bleeds (especially with waterier inks like Lamy or Waterman)
* Paper is not very smooth
* Paper is not the same on both sides (one side is smoother and glossier)
* I found the microperfs annoying over time.


My experience related to these:
* Never a bleeding or spreading problem with a variety of Noodlers, Diamine, Private Reserve inks. I tend to use fine nibs.

* Roughness not a problem for me; probably related to recycled paper which I prefer. As a leftist I like the absorbency which reduces drying time.

* Earliest Ecosystem paper I used did have different front and back feels, but not 2011 vintage.

* Microperfs are a major advantage for me, to tear out an occasional sheet to leave behind, or delete a wasted page. I use these for daily logbooks which I archive.

Additional pro: The soft-covered version is durable enough for back pocket carry. Tried that with soft Moleskines and the bindings decomposed quickly from flexing when sitting.

Among fixed-binding pads, these are my personal choice.