Black Friday and Cyber Monday Deals at Pencils.com

Our friends at Pencils.com have some great promotions coming up for your holiday shopping:

Blackwing Friday (11/23/2012) – For every $20 spent, we’re giving away a free Blackwing 602 pencil

 

Cyber Monday (11/26/2012) – We’ll be slashing prices on over 25 items

 

Blackwing Friday through Cyber Monday (11/23 – 11/26) – Free shipping on orders of $25 or more.

 

If you’re looking for ideas, I reviewed some of Pencils.com’s Palomino Blackwing Sketchbooks recently. And here’s another item that might be on my Christmas list: the Palomino Hardcover Luxury Notebook! Keep an eye out for a review and giveaway coming soon.

Moleskine Monday: Assorted Art

Another collection Moleskine sketchbook art, including these:

See more at Showcase of Beautiful Moleskine Art | Abduzeedo Design Inspiration & Tutorials.

Notebook Addict of the Week: Miss Lai Lai

This week’s addict writes in detail about her love of notebooks and plans for using a new one:

I have always been addicted to stationery, in particular notebooks and organisers. I can’t remember when or how the addiction started. Maybe it was since I was a little girl scribbling on my notebooks with “Dear Diary” entries. Or maybe that perfectionist in me trying to be that super-duper-organised student back then, or as a  corporate warrior in the recent years, that I would try to hunt for the perfect system to organise my life.  Alas, I am still not the most organised person (compared to some others I know) and I have accepted that it was just excuses for my addiction to notebooks, organisers and the like.

These are her unused notebooks:

A collection of her spiral notebooks:

Read more and see more photos at On Notebooks Galore and the Art of Scribbling | The Random Rants and Musings of Miss Lai Lai.

Wooden Case For Field Notes Notebooks

Now here’s a perfect holiday gift for a notebook addict, at least if they like Field Notes or similarly sized notebooks:

 

I’ve always thought it would be nice to have some custom-made, perfectly-sized notebook storage. This box adds a nice extra: tabs that you can use to organize your various Field Notes volumes. Pretty cool!

Read more at Gorgeous ‘Archival’ Wooden Case For Field Notes Notebooks | Cult of Mac.

Notebooks at BookMarc

BookMarc is the Marc Jacobs bookstore on Bleecker St. in NYC. They have a cool selection of old and new books, and some rather nice notebooks:

The notebooks are all lined inside, seem to be of pretty good quality, and say they are made by Chameleon Like, Inc. On the company’s website, they offer a variety of journals that can be custom embossed and imprinted, including these. The small notebooks seem to wholesale for about $6.05 for quantities of 5000 and up, so the $15 that BookMarc is charging is about the markup you’d expect, maybe a bit on the high end. The wholesale cost usually includes a 4-color belly band, so maybe they actually paid less. Chameleon Like’s minimum quantity for these seems to be 100, at $9.85 each. Worth considering if you are looking for a nice promotional notebook.

Veteran’s Day: Soldiers’ Sketchbooks

A few sketchbooks by soldiers, in honor of Veteran’s Day:

By WWII veteran Williard Dominick:

 

From the Library of Congress website:

And I’ve posted about this before but it’s worth revisiting:
A Soldier’s Sketchbook: From the Front Lines of World War II

Thank you to all who have served our military, especially those who have managed to create some beautiful images in the midst of wartime.

Notebook Addict of the Week: Voron

Voron emailed me these photos of her notebooks. The close-up is of a Paperchase notebook. I detect a strong preference for colorful wire-bound notebooks, but there are a few plainer hardcovers snuck in there too!

Thanks for sharing your addiction, Voron!

Election Day Sketchbook

I love this: Mike Sheehan used a fold-out sketchbook (probably a Moleskine Japanese Album) to capture drawings of people in line to vote.

See more at Off-Ramp : Mike Sheehan’s Election Day sketchbook | 89.3 KPCC.

Review and Giveaway: Miro Journals

The kind folks at Miro sent me a jumbo pile of journals to review, a selection of which appear below. They have some interesting points of difference with other products out there on the market, so let’s take a look.

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Miro has 4 product lines– two are wire-o bound with different types of cover materials– “canvas” and “soft touch.” Then they have stitch-bound utility books, and softcover journals.

First, the utility book. They come in 3 sizes, in black and white, and in lined, squared, and blank pages. They are very similar to Moleskine Cahiers, Field Notes, or Doane Paper Utility Books, but instead of the standard 3.5 x 5.5″ size most people use, these are 3.25 x 5.5″, which might be a nice alternative if you’ve got narrow pockets you slip your notebooks into. The small book has 68 pages, which is more than Field Notes and Doane’s 48, but the same as a Moleskine Cahier. Miro utility notebooks are sold in 2-packs, for $4.99 for the small size, which is a good value vs. the competition.
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The design is simple and attractive– a paper band around the set, contrasting stitching on the spine, and a subtle stamped logo on the front cover. There is no inner back pocket on the small notebook, though the larger sizes do have one. The last two pages of the notebook are perforated– I was surprised they didn’t perforate a few more pages than that.

Inside, the paper has a smooth, slightly “soft” feel, with grid lines in a light grey dot matrix. They are a bit wider than the lines on some other notebooks. It felt good with all my pens, though the carbon ink fountain pen feathered a bit. There was a bit more show-through and bleed-through than average.

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Let’s also take a look at the Journal. Every journal comes packaged with a bonus utility notebook, cleverly tucked into the paper wrapper.

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They are referring to this as a softcover journal, but I first saw it as a hardcover– I guess it’s actually kind of a hybrid– rather than hard cover boards wrapped with the outer material, the cover seems to be a thick multi-layer material that is reinforced enough to be stiffer than most softcover notebooks, though it still has some flexibility to it and it opens flat. The outside has a smooth texture without any fake-leather grain. My favorite feature is the dyed edges, which match the elastic and ribbon marker. Pages stick together slightly at first, but come apart easily.

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The ribbon marker itself is a bit chintzy– it was all crumpled on the example I received, and the only thing attaching it to the notebook is a small sticker on the inside back cover, which was easily loosened. This really is unacceptable in my opinion– one slight tug and that ribbon is gone. The pocket on the inside back cover is also a bit more basic than other brands offer– it’s just a paper slot without any gussets.

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The Journal comes in black and white, with 5 different accent colors for the edge and elastic, and 3 different sizes. Unfortunately, only lined pages are available. The small size is 3.25 x 5.5″, 192 pages, for $9.99– again a very good value, especially when you factor in the included utility notebook.

Both the Utility notebook and Journal are made with 100% post-consumer recycled paper, and it’s acid-free.

The Miro notebooks are a nice addition to the variety of products out there. We need more colored edges! And hopefully they’ll update the way they’re attaching their ribbon markers. If you want to check out Miro in a store, you can consult their list of retailer locations. Otherwise, jump in and enter my giveaway! I got quite a few samples so I will select at least 3 lucky winners (as of writing this post, some of the samples are in my office, which I can’t get to because of the Hurricane Sandy power outage, so I forget how many samples I have!) You can enter in the following ways:

On Twitter, tweet something containing “@remembermiro” and “@NotebookStories”, and follow @NotebookStories and @remembermiro.

On Facebook, “like” the  Notebook Stories page  and the Miro page, and post something containing the words “Miro notebooks” on the Notebook Stories page.

On your blog, post something containing the words “Miro notebooks” and “Notebook Stories” and link back to this post.

The deadline for entry is Friday November 9 at 11:59PM, EST. Good luck everyone!
And please remember to check my posts on Facebook and Twitter for an announcement of the winner.

RIP Lebbeus Woods

The architect Lebbeus Woods died last week at the age of 72. I posted some images of his notebooks here: Lebbeus Woods’ Notebook.

Read more about him: LA Times Obituary

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