Jump to content

Recommended Posts

A Smug Dill

I came across this thin, nondescript A5 notebook with cream-coloured paper in Muji the other day:
fpn_1557398638__muji_sku4550182108910_ov

The product label, as you can see, doesn't tell me much. The cardboard covers are a charcoal colour and very stiff (which suggest to me good physical protection of the pages). I had to manually count the number of thread-bound sheets there are thirty sheets, so sixty pages in all and the paper weight is (still) unknown. The 5mm line grid is printed in a very faint grey, and I don't find it in-your-face or distracting at all.

This notebook isn't even listed on Muji's Australian web site; searching by the 13-digit barcoded product code pulled up no matches, and manually injecting the product code into the URL doesn't work either. However, the item can be found on Muji's Singapore web site listed among the products in its catalogue of notebook products.

According to its product listing on Muji's US web site, the material is 100% recycled paper. However, I don't know how much I trust the accuracy of the information on that page, given that the dimensions stated in the details are correct in measurement units but incorrectly stated as being B6 sized (in direct contradiction to the product heading of "Recycled Paper Bind Notebook A5 Grid Dark Gray" on the same page.) I've been slightly disappointed with similar-looking, made-in-Japan Muji notebooks with equally smooth-to-the-touch paper before; however, for the asking price printed on the label, and maybe it was just the mood I was in at the time, I was prepared to take a punt.

Then I was quite (pleasantly) surprised when I was asked to pay less for the notebook at checkout, which scanned as if it was priced at a 30% discount. Instantly, this product leapfrogged to the front of the queue of things I wanted or 'needed' to test, in case it's good enough to be 'worth' buying a fair few more at the scanned price.

I was even more surprised by how incredibly fountain pen friendly the paper proved to be. Writing all over the first page with different pens and inks:

fpn_1557398620__muji_sku4550182108910_sh

resulted in no observable feathering, no show-through (even though you can discern that the other side of the sheet was written on and not unused) and no bleed-through with any of the inks. I then wrote densely on the recto side with pigment inks and iron-gall inks that I have seen cause trouble with other types of paper:

fpn_1557398604__muji_sku4550182108910_sh

and there was still effectively no show-through and bleed-through. Oh, and the 'sheening' inks do sheen on this paper, although perhaps not at Tomoe River levels:

fpn_1557398587__muji_sku4550182108910_sh

My conclusion is that, for A$1.25 for every 60-page A5 notebook, one couldn't reasonably expect better performance for use with fountain pens than that. Writing on this paper is a far more pleasant kinaesthetic experience, compared to that with the coated paper in the Muji 裏うつりしにくいノート B5 Notebook Set I bought on the same visit. I went back to my local Muji store the following day and cleared out every last one of its stock of this SKU; I've been back three times since, and it doesn't look as if it has any more stock "in the back".

Update: It seems Muji US has delisted the product since last weekend, when I successfully searched for and found it by the 13-digit product code. Even though you can still retrieve the product listing by using the direct URL, the 'Add To Cart' button no longer appears on the page.

Edited by A Smug Dill

I endeavour to be frank and truthful in what I write, show or otherwise present, when I relate my first-hand experiences that are not independently verifiable; and link to third-party content where I can, when I make a claim or refute a statement of fact in a thread. If there is something you can verify for yourself, I entreat you to do so, and judge for yourself what is right, correct for valid. I may be wrong, and my position or say-so is no more authoritative and carries no more weight than anyone else's here.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 8
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

  • A Smug Dill

    3

  • penzel_washinkton

    2

  • almoore

    1

  • avlisyar

    1

penzel_washinkton

Agree that it does sheen, but it seems inconsistent from one sheet to another.

Not bad though for a very inexpensive item like this one. Always hoping they release a lined or blank version of this paper.

Link to post
Share on other sites
A Smug Dill

Always hoping they release a lined or blank version of this paper.

I believe Muji does have one with 6mm-ruled paper of the same type and kraft covers. Actually, I picked one of those up from Muji a few hours ago which just happened to be the last unit in stock at my local store but I haven't tested it yet. As with the notebook I reviewed above, the 6mm-ruled notebook can be found on Muji's Singaporean web site but not its Australian web site, only its Singaporean site, and it also didn't scan at the price indicated on the product label.

Edited by A Smug Dill

I endeavour to be frank and truthful in what I write, show or otherwise present, when I relate my first-hand experiences that are not independently verifiable; and link to third-party content where I can, when I make a claim or refute a statement of fact in a thread. If there is something you can verify for yourself, I entreat you to do so, and judge for yourself what is right, correct for valid. I may be wrong, and my position or say-so is no more authoritative and carries no more weight than anyone else's here.

Link to post
Share on other sites
penzel_washinkton

Nice options over there huh?

Only got the grid version here unfortunately.

Edited by penzel_washinkton
Link to post
Share on other sites

I work in NYC and have access to a MUJI store.

I have been using these notebooks for years as

they are a bargain when considering their price

and the fact that they are fountain pen friendly.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 weeks later...
A Smug Dill

After last week's stocktake, it appears Muji's Chatswood store has dug up some units of this type of A5 notebook with blank pages as well; the product code is 4550002433703 US (but cannot be found on Muji's Australian, US or Singaporean web sites), and it has kraft covers and vermillion spines.

 

There were some units of the charcoal-covered, line-gridded version at the Chatswood store when I was there yesterday.

 

Neither of those products are available from the Sydney CBD store right now.

I endeavour to be frank and truthful in what I write, show or otherwise present, when I relate my first-hand experiences that are not independently verifiable; and link to third-party content where I can, when I make a claim or refute a statement of fact in a thread. If there is something you can verify for yourself, I entreat you to do so, and judge for yourself what is right, correct for valid. I may be wrong, and my position or say-so is no more authoritative and carries no more weight than anyone else's here.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 3 months later...

I found a Muji store in center Dublin, happily bought two notebooks over the weekend. An A5 dot grid spiral bound with 5% recycled paper, and a smaller, I guess B6 size with craft paper cover, blank and thicker notebook. Unfortunately, only the A5 dot grid was fountain pen friendly. The B6 book was horrible, it feathered and bled through.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now







×
×
  • Create New...