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Friday, March 23, 2012

Notebook review - Mead "Moleskine"

No, I'm not reviewing a Moleskine. I've done one better.... I'm reviewing a copy of a Moleskine, made by Mead. :)

But I have some good things to say about it, and best of all, it's readily available at a local store so you can try one too!

This will be more of a mini-review like my last paper review. Enjoy!

I found these notebooks at my local Wal-Mart, and had to pick one up. I knew the paper might not be great, but I really like these little hard-cover type notebooks. I shall illustrate with pictures, and walk you through the notebook. :)

NOTE - I will be comparing these to real Moleskine notebooks throughout this mini-review. 

First things first - the cover.
It's made of a faux leather material, and is very strong. I've been using this notebook for about a year now, in case you're wondering. It feels very nice, and I can tell you from experience - it's very sturdy. It completely outdid the Moleskine I compared it too. The Moleskine started falling apart in a few months. This one is still holding strong after more than a year.

Here's the inside cover. Has some logo and branding stuff in the left-bottom corner. On the right page, it has a space for personal info, in case you lose your notebook. I've blurred out my info, since it had my old address on it, that I no longer live at.

Also, I hate to burst your bubble, but no, the Apple Logo sticker doesn't come with the notebook. ;) I put it on myself...

The elastic strap that keeps the book closed works like a charm, and it held on very securely. No signs of it popping off or breaking.

And it has a pocket in the back, just like a real Moleskine. Comparing to the Moleskine, they both perform about the same. The pockets wear out rather quickly compared to the notebook, especially if you use it often.

Now time to test out the paper!

Here's a close up sample, written with my TWSBI 540, F stub nib, with Diamine Orange.
Be sure to click on this one, and see it at full resolution, so you can get an idea of how the paper handles the ink.

Here's a bit of text written with a Kaweco Sport, B nib, PR Copper Burst ink. Looks pretty good to me! You can open this image up and view it at full resolution too if you really want to see up close.

The back-side of the page: moderate show-through, and just a tiny bit of bleed-through. I use both sides, and since I normally use a F nib instead of a the B used here, it works great.

Overall, I have to say, for the cheap price of about $5.00, this notebook really puts a real Moleskine to shame. It's cheaper, sturdier, and can be purchased at your local Wal-Mart instead of having to be ordered online. The company makes these in quite a few sizes and colors, including a bigger one that is just like the big Moleksines.

As far as notebooks go, I really like these! they perform just fine for me, and they're very good to carry/travel with. Because they're hard cover, they can take a lot of abuse, and still look brand new.

I highly recommend that you go pick one of these up. I think you'll be impressed.. True, if you love soaking-wet 1.3mm stubs, these might not be your cup of tea. They feather just a tad with wet nibs, and some of us can't take even the slightest bit of show-through/bleed-through. But for me, they perfectly match my need for a pocket notebook - cheap, readily available, and good enough.

That's it for today's mini-review. I hope you enjoyed! If you've ever used one of these before, or if you plan on getting one, please let me know what you think in the comments below.

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