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Today I'm reviewing a leather notebook/diary system made by a German manufacturer. The X47 is their high end line, there also is X17 which is cheaper and, I think, uses a less sophisticated system to attach the refills. As I haven't found anything about the brand on FPN yet I feel it's high time. I've never liked ring notebooks like Filofax but the idea of something refillable always appealed to me. That's why I own two Midori Traveler's Notebooks and three A5 sized handmade leather journals of various colors. The X47 is a very different animal as it doesn't breathe "handmade and rugged" but "businesslike and classy". http://2.bp.blogspot.com/-Necke6IoktI/UkZ43LC7SKI/AAAAAAAAAws/Q4dIkE7-1r4/s1600/x471.JPG They are handmade though, sewn here in Germany. A5 and A6 size are available. There is a range of leather colors and surfaces to choose from. I chose glossy chestnut brown calfskin and it's beautiful. Boyfriend is working with leather and if you've touched and worked with hides, good ones and poor ones, you can feel if it's good quality. For me, a glossy surface notoriously rouses suspicions because many poor quality leathers try to hide behind a ton of lacquer and dye. These are the leathers that feel like painted cardboard. My X47 isn't like that! It's nice and supple and feels good. http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-GkCd_lzgcGQ/UkZ7TXbtM4I/AAAAAAAAAw4/BsuGLY578_g/s1600/X472.JPG The notebook offers a few goodies. For instance if you choose the A5 size you can insert an extra A6 cahier into the inside of the front cover. The one currently sitting there is a little smaller than A6, but it's wise to put something there, else the gap could be bothersome when writing on the first pages of the first refill. There is also a stamp sized space with a leather flap but I have no idea what that's for. It's definitely too small for business cards (plus there is space for business cards at the inside of the back cover). Any ideas? The leather is really thin so there's something stiff between the layers of the front and back cover. It will prevent the whole thing from becoming too soft and wobbly over time. http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-Mi77-B4cofA/UkZ8Vo29n0I/AAAAAAAAAxA/kwpAAfj7Bh0/s1600/X473.JPG Refills are inserted using slim aluminium rods. The curvy parts are attached to the leather, the straight parts can be taken out and have two thorns which go through the spines of the notebook refills. Near the lower edge of the next picture you can see such a thorn. The ready made refills you can buy at X47 already have such a straight rod attached to their backs so exchanging them is quick and easy. You can also remove those rods and attach them to any notebook you'd like, in my case a Midori MD light, a Rhodia and a Semikolon. Another cool detail: sewn-in ribbon bookmarks. The ends of those have been covered in resin or something similar so they won't fray. I don't know if I would mind them fraying but I'm a little impressed by the thoughtfulness. http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-pbqfCY9pwAo/UkZ-h0xVUTI/AAAAAAAAAxM/zQZOprNfnqw/s1600/X474.JPG This picture also shows the color better, a very nice reddish brown. The glossy surface makes it even more lively. I have to say I like this system, it's very slim and elegant. Even though it makes using your own paper a little more complicated than with a Midori I feel it's worth it. http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-xA-ZTw347O8/UkZ_kXpxNmI/AAAAAAAAAxU/BVWmpiPtzRI/s1600/X475.JPG There's also a pen loop large enough for a slim fountain pen - part of it is elastics but anything fatter than, say, a Pelikan M400 would be a really tight fit. The notebook weighs 570 g with said 3 refills, which is a little heavier than a larger sized Midori TN - which is still quite a bit smaller than A5 -, but lighter than my handmade notebooks. I'm still not sure if this very classy style is really for me but no matter what, this is some really nice piece of work. Hope you've enjoyed my review. P.S.: The decorative pen is an Omas Extra Lucens.