Category Archives: Deafmessanger

Deafmessanger Now Available at LoveNotebooks!

Remember Deafmessanger? I reviewed one of these handmade notebooks from Prague a while back and loved it, but they were only sold at a few small shops in the US. Well now I am happy to report that my friends at LoveNotebooks are now distributing these beautiful journals, and sent me a sample to give away to a lucky reader:

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Just gorgeous. I love the colors and all the found materials. It’s as if each journal is a scrapbook from the lives of characters in a novel that hasn’t been written yet, and you can imagine the story however you want.

From the description at LoveNotebooks:

Street smarts. That’s what Kucin, Czech artist, pastes, paints, stencils and stamps into each of his one-of-a-kind Deafmessanger journals. Based in Prague, Kucin makes his journals there by hand, tucking unexpected found objects in between the pages – recycled receipts, cancelled postcards, magazine pages, maps, photos and more. It’s these spontaneous bits of life that make the hand made journals unique works of art. Leafing through is like walking down a side street in the city. As marked on each Deafmessanger notebook they are not only made in Pargue they are made from Prague.

Deafmessanger’s graffiti inspired journals feature thick cardboard covers, scored and bent around pages that are bound with plastic combs. Elastic bands close the corners. Inside you will find a little pencil, page marker, random quotes and all sorts of tidbits. There is a nice balance of blank pages and decorated ones, enough to inspire your own collecting and soul searching.

Three sizes and various designs are available at LoveNotebooks. At $19.95-29.95, these will not be the cheapest journals you’ve ever bought, but for a unique and beautiful artwork, I think it’s a great value.

But if you want to win one for free, here’s how to enter the giveaway:

On Twitter, follow Notebook Stories and tweet something containing the words “Deafmessanger,” “@LoveNotebooks” and “@NotebookStories.

On Facebook, “like” the  Notebook Stories page and post something containing the word “Deafmessanger” on my wall.

On your blog, post something containing the word “Deafmessanger,” “LoveNotebooks” and “NotebookStories” and link back to this post.

The deadline for entry is Friday April 29 at 11:59PM, EST.

Winners will be posted on Facebook and Twitter. Good luck everyone!

Review: Handmade Journal by Deafmessanger

“Deafmessanger” is Kucin, an artist living in Prague. He sells his notebooks, diaries, sketchbooks and postcards in lots of locations around Europe, as well as at Bluestockings and Spoonbill and Sugartown here in NYC. He contacted me a few months ago and offered me a sample journal to review– when I took a look at his work, I very excitedly said YES! I love his graffiti-inspired style and use of found materials.

The notebook I was sent has a thick cardboard cover, scored to allow it to bend around the inner combbound pages. There are elastic closures at each corner.

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Inside and out, there’s a wonderful mix of spray-painted splatter, stenciled images, rubber-stamped phrases and quotes, and surprise bits of recycled materials, including an old postcard, a transit ticket, book and magazine pages, and a small black and white photo.

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It even comes with a pencil!

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If there’s one criticism I’d have of this notebook, it’s that the binding is a little over-stuffed with too many pages, which makes it hard to open the pages fully without them getting caught in the plastic binding.

All the unique extra bits are interspersed among sections of blank pages, made of a grey-ish recycled paper with a slight speckled tone to it. The paper reminds me of the Leonardo journal I reviewed a few months ago. It feels a bit thin, but holds up to most pens relatively well, and the surface is fairly smooth.

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The book seems like such a work of art, you’d almost not want to write in it yourself, but there are plenty of blank pages on which to do so. And indeed, at the end of the book is the handwritten note “to be continued,” which to me means not just that Kucin’s Deafmessanger work continues, but that the book is a work in progress, containing Kucin’s creativity, the user’s creativity, and even the contributions of unknown random people in the found images and writings that are included. Each notebook is unique from start to finish.
Kucin also makes some very cool 2011 diaries that would make great gifts:

Just beautiful.

Check out the Deafmessanger online store, and list of retailers. And hopefully distribution will be expanded to a store near you!