Category Archives: OrangeArt

Softcover and Single-Signature Notebooks from My Collection

On my “to-do” list for this blog has been a comparison of various notebooks in similar styles. I thought I’d do a post about softcover notebooks, and one about single-signature notebooks, similar to Field Notes and Moleskine Cahiers. So I went rooting around in my collection to find various examples of these styles, but the results were a bit daunting:

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Not only did I find a rather large number of notebooks, I discovered that there’s kind of grey area between these two styles, so I ended up arranging them in a sort of continuum of variations, from thicker softcover notebooks, through thinner squared-spine ones, to the thinnest single-signature ones with stitched or stapled bindings.

From left, we have the “The II” notebook bought at Kinokuniya, red Piccadilly notebook, softcover Piccadilly notebook, white Conceptum notebook from Germany, Zequenz notebook, Leonardo pocket journal from Papyrus, Fabio Ricci notebook bought in Turkey, Soundless Soliloquy notebook from Etsy, a notebook bought in a museum shop in Portugal, Book Factory pocket notebook, Rendr sketchbook, Canson XL sketchbook, Daler Rowney Ivory sketchbook, Pocket Dept notebook, Rhodia Unlimited notebook, yellow graph paper notebook with green cloth spine from Turkey, Federal Supply Memorandum book, Moleskine Volant, Rite in the Rain waterproof notebook, Clairefontaine notebook from the early 1990s, slipcased German notebook and pencil from Carmen, another old Clairefontaine notebook, a more recent Clairefontaine notebook, Moleskine Cahier, Banditapple Carnet, Miro journals, fluorescent Field Notes given to me by a reader, white notebook from Deyrolle in Paris, Kikkerland Writersblok notebook, Moleskine Cahier decorated by me with stamps, Noted graph paper notebook from Target, Filou notebook bought in Turkey, Northern Central Co. Memorandum book from the late ’70s/early ’80s, Ink Journal, polkadot notebook from Portugal, black school quaderno from Vickerey, white promotional notebook from, (at this point the order gets scrambled in some of the later photos) black Doane Paper Utility Notebook, pale green Bound Custom Journal Memo, HitList notebook, OrangeArt Tattersall notebook, Artescrita 4-pack from Portugal, boxed Calepino notebooks, Word. notebook, Halaby Aero Flightbook, and Hahnemuhle Travel Booklets. Whew! I thought I had also included one other little graph paper stapled notebook that I bought in Portugal, but I can’t spot it in the photos– maybe it’s buried under there somewhere!

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And of course this isn’t even all the softcover notebooks in my collection. It’s also worth noting that of all these notebooks, the only ones that have actually been used even partially (other than pen tests for reviews) are the two old black/grey Clairefontaine notebooks and the Northern Central Memorandum book. I have other Moleskine Volant and Kikkerland Writersblok notebooks that I have used, but they weren’t the ones in these photos. I will probably use some of the graph paper and plain paper notebooks in the future. I ended up feeling like it was impossible to compare and contrast the features of so many different notebooks, but almost all of them have been photographed and described in more detail in other posts on this site already.

What’s your favorite softcover notebook?

Review & Giveaway: OrangeArt Tattersall Notebooks

I spotted these at my favorite local stationery store (NYC’s Paper Presentation, on 18th St.) and immediately fell in love with them. I was thrilled when the nice folks at OrangeArt agreed to send me some samples to review.


The format of these notebooks is hardly unique, but the letterpress tattersall design on the covers really caught my eye. Each two-pack has slightly different colors, one notebook in cool blue or green, and one in warm orange or red. The tattersall pattern is very crisp and looks just like some button-down shirts I remember my father wearing decades ago!


The notebooks are neatly trimmed and staple-bound. On the inside cover, there’s a place to write your name and contact info above the company’s branding info, which appears nowhere else on the notebook.

The paper inside was an unexpected treat– I thought it was cool having the tattersall pattern on the outside, but had no idea it would appear inside as well! The large squares might not work for everyone, though– they might distract from drawings, and they’re not close enough together to write text on every line unless you like to write in really big letters.


The paper is recycled, with a bright white color and a slightly toothier rougher feel. It works well with all my pens though to me the paper is a bit too textured for the finer rollerballs. Show-through and bleed-through were about average.


These would make a fun gift for anyone who loves notebooks, or is a fan of letterpress printing. The company even offers a broader line of tattersall pattern stationery and a desk blotter. At $9.50 for a 2-pack of 3.5×5.5″ notebooks, these aren’t the cheapest out there, but I think it’s a good value for these quality letterpress notebooks made in the USA.

And of course, I’m giving away my extra samples to 3 lucky winners, who will be randomly selected from entries received in any of these ways:

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

On Facebook, “like” the Notebook Stories page, and post something containing the words “OrangeArt Tattersall” on the Notebook Stories wall.

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

The deadline for entry is Friday Dec. 7 at 11:59PM, EST. Good luck everyone!
And please remember to check my posts on Facebook and Twitter for an announcement of the winner.