Notebook Addict of the Week: Suz Blackaby

This week’s addict is another discovery via Sharing Our Notebooks. Suz Blackaby is a writer of poetry, fiction and non-fiction for children. She’s laid out quite a collection of notebooks on this table! And yet she says she still resorts to jotting things on envelopes and napkins…


“So when it comes to notebooks, it turns out that I have a ridiculous number and variety in my greedy possession: linen-over-boards-in-pleasing-colors; high-end paper with/without lines/grids; handmade by dear friends; lovingly and cleverly chosen by traveling family members; discovered in quaint corners of art, paper, writing, museum, &/or book shops; etc. I stockpile a stockpile. Turns out this is maybe an illness….

hoard (n.): cache, stockpile, stock, collection, supply, reserve, reservoir, fund, accumulation, treasury, stash, gathering, set, assortment, pool

hoard (v.): save, store, amass, stockpile, accumulate, collect, gather, put aside, hide away, squirrel away, assemble, accrue”


Read more at  Sharing Our Notebooks: Suz Blackaby: Please Pass the Napkins.

A Bookshelf-Builder’s Notebook

I love notebook pages with measurements and plans! I found this one accompanying an excerpt from Nina MacLaughlin’s memoir Hammer Head: The Making of a Carpenter:

“…the story of MacLaughlin’s journey out of a drag-and-click job at a newspaper and into a carpentry apprenticeship. In this section MacLaughlin strikes out on her own to craft bookshelves for her father and meditates on the relationship between writing and carpentry, and learning to build with wood instead of words.”

Sounds like a great book… especially if it includes more photos of her notebooks! (Though I’m not sure it does, alas…)

Read more at : All the Language in the World Won’t Make a Bookshelf Exist : Longreads Blog

A Notebook Can Make Your Life Better

Did you need another justification for your love of writing in notebooks? Here’s one:

“A lot of research shows your brain sees writing differently than thinking or talking.Writing forces you to organize and clarify your thoughts. You learn better when you write things down and are more likely to follow through.”

This blog posts goes on to share 8 tips on ways to improve your life by writing in a notebook. Read more at: This One Simple Thing Can Make Your Life Much Better | TIME

Review and Giveaway: PaperOh Notebooks

I think I understand how they came up with the name for this brand. If the people behind Paperblanks came to you and said they had a new line of notebooks, and asked you to take a look at them, you’d say “Oh!” when you opened the box and saw that they looked like this:

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These notebooks are definitely a departure from the Paperblanks look– totally different notebook styles, designs, and materials. I got a nice assortment representing a few of their product lines: Circulo, Ondulo, and Quadro. Ondulo has a wavy-textured cardboard cover and contrasting endpapers. Circulo and Quadro are named for the circular or square cut-outs that show off the contrasting colors in the two-layer cover. In all these lines, except in the cahiers, you get a paper bookmark that can be stuck onto the inner back cover. It’s scored so it will easily bend over to mark your place. All the notebooks have a little booklet tucked inside with some brand info– I was very impressed by the booklet, as it’s an unusual design–the jagged shape results from a slightly trapezoidal slip of paper that is then folded on angles, with the type inside aligned to the folds. There is also some product info on a sticker on the inside back cover of each notebook. The sticker has an interesting shape– this and the booklet made me think they’d spent some extra money on these to spice up the design, as anything beyond standard square or rounded corners must cost more!

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The larger size notebooks have wrap-around magnetic covers and a binding that is designed to lay flat– it works well, as you can open the notebook pretty much anywhere and it will stay open.

The small Circulo cahiers come in a set of two, one black & red and one grey & orange. These are in some ways similar to other single-signature notebooks, but I love how they are spiced up by the 2-layer cover in contrasting colors. It makes the cover stiffer and more sturdy.

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The paper within is a creamy off white with fine grey grid lines. It feels lovely and smooth to write on. There were some little spots of bleed-through with a few pens, and show-through was about average.

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All in all, I really like the attention to detail and quality of workmanship in these notebooks. They’ve added some special little touches that take them a notch above similar products. I’m not sure how widely these are distributed at retail yet, as the store finder on their website didn’t show me any results, just an empty map. But you can buy them online at Jenni Bick and Notegeist. The prices start at $9.95 for the 2-pack of cahiers and seem pretty reasonable for the features and design quality.

And you can also throw your hat in for a giveaway! I will be giving away two prize packs of two notebooks each. The two winners will be chosen randomly from entries received in these ways:

On Twitter, tweet something containing “Paper-Oh Notebooks @paperoh @NotebookStories”, and follow @NotebookStories and @paperoh.

On Facebook, “like” the Notebook Stories page and the Paper-Oh page and post something containing the words “Paper-Oh Notebooks” on the Notebook Stories page.

On your blog, post something containing the words “Paper-Oh Notebooks” and “Notebook Stories” and link back to this post.

The deadline for entry is Friday June 26, 2015 at 11:59PM, EST. Good luck everyone!
And please remember to check my posts on Facebook and Twitter for an announcement of the winner. Please allow a couple of weeks for me to check all the entries and determine the winners.



Notebook Addict of the Week: Video Eleven

Here’s an addict with a nice assortment of notebooks and fountain pens. Interestingly, the notebooks seem to have quite a variety, but the pens look like they are all variations of the same brand…
The photo tags mention Rhodia and Whitelines. I think I also spy Moleskine and Life notebooks.


See the original at Pile of Notebooks and Fountain Pens – a photo on Flickriver.

Josh Keyes’ Sketchbooks

A beautiful pile of sketchbooks with beautiful pages within, all belonging to artist Josh Keyes:

Read lots more about his sketchbooks and creative process at Inside the Sketchbook of Josh Keyes | Hi-Fructose Magazine.

Paper in the Digital World

Some lovely notebook images and thoughts about why we still love paper, and in fact may love paper even more because our lives have gone digital.

From the article:

“If you find yourself dependent on notebooks, even if much of your work is online, you are part of a growing number of people who are finding paper journals an important part of their workflow. I know it’s certainly the case for me. (Last week I spent a half and hour organizing my old journals from the past 3 years. I label what’s inside on a Post-it on the inside cover for quick reference so I can find specific notes if I need them again in the future.) I use notebooks for both organizing work projects and also jotting down inspiring quotes, ideas and as my personal journal, so I fill them up pretty quickly, and I find them incredibly important to my life — even though I work online all day. But that’s maybe why I feel I “need” the notebooks so much — precisely because so much of what I write isn’t physical. As NPR reports, famous notebook maker Moleskine has been enjoying double-digit growth over the last few years, even as more and more people go online and use apps to organize their lives. In fact, the company even found that they had higher sales of notebooks in locations that were close to Apple stores, which suggests that paper journals are seen by many as a necessary accompaniment to their digital lives.”

Read more at  Why we still love paper in a digital world | MNN – Mother Nature Network

Moleskine Monday: Start-Ups Love Them

Just spotted this article: Why Startups Love Moleskines – The New Yorker, which notes that “the popularity of Moleskine notebooks seems to defy the widespread worship of technological innovations coming out of Silicon Valley.” Ok, that is a trend that has been talked about a lot, and I’ll actually read the rest of the article later, but what struck me was this image that accompanies it on the New Yorker website:


It is a very nice-looking notebook, but I can’t help wondering if it is really a Moleskine! In my experience, Moleskine brand notebooks never have that larger margin at the top before the lines begin– the lines are evenly spaced over the whole page, and sometimes cut very close to the top edge of the paper. The lines also look a bit darker than usual for a Moleskine, but that seems to vary in some of their print runs. This could maybe be a Piccadilly, but they don’t usually have that extra space either. Maybe some other Mole-clone brand?

Moleskine Monday: Sample Sale June 8 & 9, 2015

New York is always a-popping with sample sales. They often take over vacant storefronts, and usually feature clothes– for certain brands, you’ll see lines down the block to get in. To me, it always seems like more mayhem than it’s worth, so I don’t tend to shop at them. But this is one I would check out: a Moleskine sample sale! I’m bummed that I didn’t hear about it til the first day was over, but it’s open again tomorrow. Prices are pretty good…

Read more at: Yes, There Is a Moleskine Sample Sale, And Yes, It’s Great – Racked NY

Notebook Addict of the Week: Bubbe Wisdom

This week’s addict, the blogger at Bubbe Wisdom, is actually a recovered notebook addict now… which makes me a little sad, I must confess.

She says:

“See that pile of notebooks? They represent twenty plus years of collecting inspirational ideas on paper. Each notebook represents a category: stitching, contemporary quilts, weaving, baskets, fashion, fine artists, Judaica, Instructions, interiors, people and the list goes on and on and on and the paper piles up and up and up, until today.

My notebooks have become obsolete. Replaced by my Pinterest Boards.

Emptied, paper recycled, notebooks dropped off at GoodWill.”

See more at : Purging – Bubbe Wisdom Bubbe Wisdom