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I am nearing the end of a Paperblanks notebook that was a gift. The decorative cover is quite appealing, but for my next journal, I'm hoping to get something that is better on a few functional points.

 

Love these kinds of covers:

http://images.utrechtart.com/products/optionLarge/Paperblanks/Paperblanks-Ventaglio-Rosso-64024_lg.jpg

http://i.walmartimages.com/i/p/97/81/44/13/10/9781441310415_500X500.jpg

http://www.lecadeauartistique.com/im/articles/carnet-paperblanks-safavide-ultra-details.jpg

http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61s9N0-poCL._SY300_.jpg

http://images.utrechtart.com/products/optionRegular/Paperblanks/karakusa_X.jpg

 

The notebook I'm finishing up has a magnetic flap closure, which adds a lot of useless weight and bulk—a pain when traveling. The paper is decent, works with some inks and not others, shows no shading, but dries fast. The line spacing is also a bit wide. Some of the Peter Pauper notebooks have beautiful covers, but the lines are absurdly wide for my handwriting.

 

90% of my writing is with EF western nibs. On the paper, a little ghosting is fine, but bleed-through is not acceptable. If the paper is very thin, I'm good with writing on just one side, but it had better make up the difference with a good page count. Don't like add-ons in notebooks: maps, historical notes, holidays, pockets, weight and measure conversion tables. They just and weight and bulk. Ribbon bookmark are nice, but I'm not going to say "no" to a notebook that doesn't have one but is otherwise good.

 

So, in sum:

  • Ornate, decorative cover—but not cartoony or girlish
  • Lined, with a narrow ruling, preferably around 6mm
  • 5x7 to 7x9 inches or something in the A5, B6, A6 range
  • Lays flat or close to flat
  • Cream/off-white paper
  • Hardcover
  • Not more than 1 inch thick, preferably less than 3/4
  • Not full of extras

Any suggestions for notebooks that fit these requirements?

Edited by Prolix
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Palomino notebook. Available in lined or grid, large or medium. The large is about normal for a US composition book: a bit bigger than A-5 but much handier that A-4 paper.

 

Has a leather-like cover, with the Palomino Blackwing logo imprinted.

 

Great paper: best I've found. No feathering, bleed-through, and only the faintest show-through from a wet medium/broad P51 nib using a saturated ink.

 

Made by the same people who make the great California Republic Palomino pencils, including the new Blackwing.

Edited by welch

Washington Nationals 2019: the fight for .500; "stay in the fight"; WON the fight

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The Good Captain

What about a leather cover for a Leuchtturm pocket notebook?

The Good Captain

"Meddler's 'Salamander' - almost as good as the real thing!"

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+ 1 for The Good Captain's recommendation. A leather cover will enable you to personalize while adding durability to the equation.

Failure seldom stops you; what stops you is fear of failure.

-- Jack Lemmon

 

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You might check the leather covers from Oberon Design. They have a variety of covers for every taste. The Rhodia Webbie fits OK as do others. You could then use any journal with other features you like as the covers are refillable.

Here's a link to get you started, or you can do an FPN search for Oberon.
https://www.fountainpennetwork.com/forum/index.php/topic/186393-oberon-large-journal-covers/

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A fancy refillable cover may really help you find what you're looking for. I don't know of any fancy-cover journals that are narrow ruled, unfortunately.

 

If you want bright white narrow-ruled paper, the Ecosystems notebooks from Barnes&Noble are narrow-ruled (too narrow for me, honestly, but I like Paperblanks rulings so you might like the Ecosystems a lot :) ). They're very plain, but if you have a refillable cover that won't matter.

 

Also, have you looked on Etsy at a custom journal maker? There are several, and some let you pick the paper and discuss the cover design with them.

Edited by WirsPlm
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Thanks for all the recommendations. The Dazzle Cover notebooks are cool, but there doesn't seem to be an American retailer. Also, I can't find any information about the ruling, the paper quality, etc. I am curious, if anyone knows about them.

 

As for a refillable cover, that isn't what I'm after for two reasons. First, I'll get bored using the same cover for years. Second, the added weight is a concern. All the leather covers I've held have been made from a thick hide that adds much bulk and weight. And then most have ties or buttons that get in the way too. I travel a great deal (often with only a carry-on), so size, weight, and snagging potential are always at the fore of my mind.

 

I guess there isn't an easy answer for a company like Paperblanks but with a narrower rule and nicer paper.

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The Good Captain

What about a leather cover for a Leuchtturm pocket notebook?

Here's what I mean.

 

fpn_1380019564__leuchtturm_cover_1.jpg

 

fpn_1380019585__leuchtturm_cover_2.jpg

 

Not much of an increase in size over the original book and nothing to snag. The book's elastic is used to keep it closed.

The Good Captain

"Meddler's 'Salamander' - almost as good as the real thing!"

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I picked up a small Dazzle notebook in an out-of-the way place a few months ago, and I am already sorry I did not get more. It was inexpensive, looked nice, and the paper was acceptable, although not stellar. It has a magnetic cover much like some of the Paperblanks notebooks have. The paper in mine is unlined, the size is A6, and I think there are about 200 pages. The paper is thin and cream-colored, it reminded me a bit of Tomoe River paper but it did have a little bleed-through. No feathering though. And did I say inexpensive?

As soon as I have an opportunity, I'm going back there to get more.

a fountain pen is physics in action... Proud member of the SuperPinks

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Joe in Seattle

Not all paper blanks journals have the magnetic closure. Take a look at Amazon and see what is available. They seem to have the widest variety of the type of cover you prefer. You may have to live with the line width spacing.

"how do I know what I think until I write it down?"

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I really like Scientific Bindery Productions B200P scientific lab notebook. It's an 8 1/2" X 11" standard US letter size acid-free paper, 208 pages, bound in a hardcover Smythe sewn signatures notebook suitable for lab use. The pages for this one have 1/4" quadrille printing in light blue (see samples on their website); lined or blank are also available. I like the paper because my fountain pen writing and insertions of various ephemera hold up well over the years and the paper is smooth and takes various inks well; it reminds me of Rhodia. The company has been in business since 1912 and I've used these volumes personally and at work (in former company) for over 24 years. They're not fancy journals and if that is to your taste, then this notebook may not be what you will like; I like them because they're archival quality, well printed and bound, and are reasonably priced ($15 or so, more if you want a special cover or imprinting). The company is not very web-savvy and has a rudimentary website often confounded with another that produces its products in China. Scientific Bindery notebooks are all produced in the USA. The website is www.scientificbindery88yrs.com. Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by JC107
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