Notebook Addict of the Week: Mark

This week’s addict is an architect with a shelf full of sketchbooks and a recent preference for Field Notes:

“…I am quite pleased to have recently found a series of small, flexible notebooks by Field Notes Brand…

They are not quite large enough to replace the classic 5×8 landscape-bound black sketchbooks that I have been using for 20 years, but they are much more likely to make it to and from the jobsites…

On top of a bookcase in my office is a collection of about 30 or so sketchbooks, large and small, that I have employed since undergrad.  These include the aforementioned 5x8s (the landscape-bound version can not be purchased here in Boulder and has to be ordered), as well as Moleskins, innumerable spiral notebooks and some very nice Japanese sketchbooks.  Chock full of drawings, sketches, ideas and the occasional grocery list, it is a growing company with the Field Notes soon to be added.”


Field Notes brand notebooks and 20 years of other sketchbooks, by Mark Gerwing, architect

Read more at: Field Notes Brand | m gerwing architects, architecture, house design, multi-family design, Boulder, Colorado

Review: Dream Atlas

Recording one’s dreams is a common use for a journal. It’s easy to just take any blank page and write down a dream you’ve remembered. But the Dream Atlas is a specialized journal that has been created for people who really want to delve deeply into their dreaming. The creators are aiming to help people remember their dreams better, take advantage of insights from dreams, and even control lucid dreams.

DreamAtlas - 1

The Dream Atlas, which I received as a free sample, comes from the makers of DreamLeaf herbal supplement pills that claim to change your sleep cycle to enhance your dreaming. I can’t vouch for any of that, but the Dream Atlas should work whether you are taking pills to dream or just doing it the old-fashioned way!


The Dream Atlas notebook is at first glance quite similar to the larger size Moleskine. 5.5 x 8.5″, hardcover, with a ribbon marker and elastic closure. There is no back pocket, but you do get a pen loop. The actual feel of the cover reminds me of the Pen & Ink journals– the black cover material has a somewhat softer texture and slightly rounded spine. The whole notebook is less stiff than a Moleskine– you can bend it slightly, though it is not as flexible as a softcover. The front cover has an embossed Dream Atlas logo, and a smaller embossed logo and brand name appear in the  usual spot on the lower back cover.

DreamAtlas - 2

The distinguishing characteristics of this notebook are less in the outer form than in the inner content. At the beginning there are a few pages with advice on how to improve your dreaming and how to have lucid dreams.

DreamAtlas - 3DreamAtlas - 4

Then the body of the journal contains page spreads for recording each dream, with a section for describing what happened in the dream, recording symbols and their meanings, drawing an image from the dream, and making notes about your interpretation of the dream’s meaning.There’s also a checkbox for recording whether the dream was a lucid one, and each spread has a quote about sleeping or dreams, from authors such as James Baldwin, Erich Fromm, Aristotle, Benjamin Franklin, and many others.

DreamAtlas - 5

At the end of the notebook are a few pages for recapping common dream themes and signs and other notes.

DreamAtlas - 9DreamAtlas - 8DreamAtlas - 7

I didn’t do a full range of pen tests in this notebook, but I did happen to have a very appropriate dream to record in my sample notebook! I used a Uniball Signo RT 0.38 pen, and found the paper to be pleasantly smooth, with an average amount of show-through.

DreamAtlas - 6
I often jot down notes about dreams in my regular notebooks, so I found it quite fun to record this dream in more detail, and be prompted to look into its meanings. If you are really committed to recording your dreams, the prompts in this journal should be quite helpful, and it would make a great gift for any dreamer. You can buy the Dream Atlas on Amazon, or at the DreamLeaf website.

Christine Lagarde’s Notebook

Christine Lagarde is the Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund, which makes her one of the most powerful women in the world of finance and politics. I was happy to see the photo below– looks she uses a pocket notebook to help keep track of things!

Screen Shot 2016-04-17 at 2.22.09 PM

Looks like a softcover Moleskine, probably…

Source: How IMF head Christine Lagarde convinces powerful men to make gender equality a priority – Women in the World in Association with The New York Times – WITW

Notebook Addict of the Week: Dan

This week’s addict has a You Tube Channel called A Sort of Interesting Life, where he posts a lot of videos about living on a narrowboat, for the most part, but he’s also quite interested in pens and notebooks. Take a look at his collection:

I think he also has the same ancient teddy bear as I have! Glad to see he has his priorities straight for what to keep with him in what must be tight living quarters on his narrowboat!

10 Notebooks to Celebrate National Stationery Week

National Stationery Week is 25 April – 1 May 2016 in the UK, and the Independent features 10 top notebook picks to celebrate. My two favorites below!

Atlas & I Personalised Map Leather Journal:From £38, Not On The High Street

“Simply provide a postcode and place name which means something to you, and Atlas & I will use an antique map of the location to cover the notebook.”  Buy now

Nuuna London Illustration Notebook: £25, Amara

“These German-made notebooks are some of the most striking we’ve seen. The most recent collection features bold graphic prints and playful slogans, as well as this intricate cityscape illustration…. ” Buy now


Source: 10 best notebooks | Arts & Books | Extras | The Independent

Limited Edition Luxury Notebooks by Inhedited

If you are looking to upgrade your notebook collection with something really high end, here’s something to check out:

“The Inhedited collection brings to the notebook market a limited selection of books claiming to be more than just that. Described as ‘a collectible object, a piece of craftsmanship, a travel and daily companion’, the new notebooks have been designed to respond to all of the user’s personal writing and travel needs….

A unique selling point with the collection is its guarantee that no two notebooks are the same. This certitude can be made due to a high-standard crafting process in which the notebook’s leathers were individually selected and the marbled papers specially hand-painted.”

The leather and marbled paper and gilt edges do look rather luscious. These are limited editions of only 260 notebooks in each style. The prices start at a jaw-dropping £258! Makes DesignY seem like a bargain!

Read more at : Inhedited’s hi-lux limited edition notebooks | Wallpaper* Magazine

Moleskine Monday: Smart Writing Set

Moleskine just introduced another digital/analog combo: the Smart Writing Set. For $199, you get a special “Paper Tablet,” a “Pen+,” and a companion app. When you write in the tablet with the special pen, your notes and drawings are immediately digitized into the app.

The thing that has me scratching my head is the way they designed the Paper Tablet:

Screen Shot 2016-04-17 at 11.45.39 AM

Screen Shot 2016-04-17 at 11.47.32 AM

“The Paper Tablet feels like a notebook but is purposely designed with extended rounded edges to look like a tablet.” Huh? In my opinion, it looks completely ridiculous to have those rounded page edges bulging out on the open sides of the cover. There is just no good reason to make it that way, for design or for function.

The concept is similar to Livescribe– I haven’t used Livescribe, or the Evernote Moleskines, so I don’t have much to say about the practical uses of these digital tools, but I’d love to hear from others who have tried them! What do you think of this new product?

Notebook Addict of the Week: Tim

This week’s addict is another stationery blogger from Germany. Tim emailed me these photos and some thoughts about his notebook collection:




“Since I was a great fan of notebooks and the series “Notebook Addict of the Week” for a long time, I want to give you a glimpse of my notebook collection and show you how I use them. I prefer to write with all imaginable varieties of ultrafine fountain pens or very fine gelpens. Japanese notebooks are therefore the best for me. I like Apica, Midori, Leuchtturm or selfmade notebooks. My notes include everyday impressions, ideas, appointments, lists, collections and I often write concepts for work. I always have multiple notebooks with me wherever I go. Perhaps it sounds a little strange, but I rarely read old notes. My usage is more present and helps to sort my thoughts.

The journals on the pictures include the year 2015 – but not all of them are completed.

A few sentences about myself: I am 36 years old, living and working in Berlin (Germany). In my spare time I take care of two cats who live with me and write a blog about stationery and analog life: (German).”

Many thanks to Tim for sharing his addiction, and I hope to see more on his blog!

Writers’ Notebooks

I love these photos, from a blog post by Jackie Morris where she’s collected a wide variety of images of writers’ notebooks:
David Almond‘s notebook for Counting Stars:

Robert MacFarlane’s notebooks:

See lots more at Writer’s notebooks in pictures.

Landscape Art in Notebooks

I love the art and the art supplies on display at the blog of Nathan Fowkes:

See more at Land Sketch. He offers online classes too!