Moleskine Monday: Pencils and Backpacks and Apps, Oh My!

The blogosphere has been buzzing for the last couple of weeks about all Moleskine’s new non-notebook items (not the underwear, though!) The Core77 article has lots of pictures but just focuses on the genesis of the designs without actually reviewing the products. Wired is skeptical. PSFK is enthusiastic. The Wall Street Journal deems the messenger bag “an instant classic.”

I’m really curious to see the bags in person– they look kind of nice, though I’m wondering what the quality of the leather (or PVC, or whatever) is like. I also think all this stuff is very aggressively priced– a set of two pencils and a sharpener for $8.95 seems like a lot, and the bags are well over $100.

As for the new Moleskine iPhone app, that, at least, is free. And it’s just as well, as I can’t say it really offers a lot of value. I tried it out and found the interface to be rather confusing and the app crashed a few times. It doesn’t offer anything that other note-taking apps don’t, except for the ability to use backgrounds matching Moleskine’s lined, blank, or squared papers, and a built-in Moleskine product catalog. I like the idea of having an electronic notebook that would preserve the simplicity and good design of the paper notebooks, but I’m not sure this app quite fits the bill.

How about you, what do you think of these new products?

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6 Responses to “Moleskine Monday: Pencils and Backpacks and Apps, Oh My!”

  1. Hello,
    I would love to see the new products in real!!!!!!
    I agree the prices are rather at the higher end, especially for the bags and I would love to see and touch it first before I can decide to buy one.
    I have had a go a the iPhone App too and while I like the idea in general I wonder (and this applies to all notetaking apps) what was it again that we like notebooks … For me it clearly that they are analog and so I ask myself why would I want to switch to digital. Maybe it’s not for me …. Although it might be easier sometimes to get the iPhone out and just type something, rather than taking put the notebook, then pen, find the next free page ….
    I can’t really see myself using it a lot (and other apps with the same purpose, such as Evernote or Springpad).

    Would be very interesting to see what others think!
    Happy Easter Monday!

  2. As frugal as I am, I probably couldn’t justify the money I’d have to spend for this stuff. I just throw the couple of Moleskines I have into a canvas tote bag with my other notebooks and schelp them around that way. I guess my concern is that they would pay less attention to quality and the notebooks would go downhill. That’s just me though;)

  3. What I meant, and what wasn’t clear is that I’m afraid that by trying to diversify as much as this seems like they are, I’m afraid the quality of the notebooks would go downhill. Do one thing and do it well is my motto and I’m not sure how I think this would affect the notebooks.

  4. Aggressively priced is a good way to put it. Perhaps they are making a statement about the market they are going for. It seems an odd time to expand a line of modestly priced items with things that will appeal to the same audience but not their wallet. Not mine anyway. I think the bags are designed very attractively but the price is too high. By twice at least for me to consider.

  5. totally in agreement! it should seem tempting to go after the market that already overpays for the notebook, but the elasticity I’m sure is far less than what they hope.

  6. TImbuk2 messenger bags are better. That is all 😉

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