Thursday, August 16, 2012

Review: Davis Leatherworks 3.5" x 5.5" Notebook Cover

Chris Davis is the owner and craftsman of Davis Leatherworks - remember the funding project I had posted about? Currently, all the leather goods he makes - journal covers, dog leashes and collars, business card sleeves, etc - are hand cut, hand sewn, and hand crafted. Which is seriously awesome. He very generously shared three of his products with me - a leather notebook cover, a business card sleeve, and an eyeglasses case.
Davis Leatherworks Packaging
Awesome packaging!
Warning: This is a picture heavy post! I think the pictures will do this more justice than my rambling.
Davis Leatherworks
Three goodies: the business card holder, the eyeglasses case, and the leather notebook cover.
Davis Leatherworks
The backsides.
Davis Leatherworks, Midori TN, Pelle Journal
Hanging out with a Midori Traveler's Notebook and a Pelle journal.
See the funding campaign here!

Leather Notebook Cover - "Tawny" Veg-Tan
Left: new notebook cover. Right: Used notebook cover!
This leather notebook cover is 3.5" x 5.5", and comes with a 3.5" x 5.5" notebook of assorted brands - it may be a Field Notes, Writer's Blok, Moleskine, etc.

My notebook cover arrived in perfect shape. It's a very simple design - no fancy doomahickies attached to it or anything. If you recall my complaints with the Pelle leather journal, it was that it did not arrived polished. Chris's leather cover looked awesome. It's a nice soft cover - it holds its form but isn't stiff. You can bend it easily. It's just right for an on-the-go leather cover. The band was perfectly snug and the cover was perfectly aligned. Nothing needed adjusting. And it smelled of delicious leather - no weird chemical smells like the Midori Traveler's Notebook (which, granted, does fade).
Davis Stamp
A classy stamp.
The cover comfortably fits one notebook, but can handle two, if they are thinner notebooks. In the case of a thick Moleskine, only one fits.  If you want more space, you'll have to let Chris know in your order. Personally, I wanted this to use in my purse, where I always keep a Field Notes memo book, so one is just right for me.
Notebook Cover Insides
A simple design.
Davis Leatherworks Notebooks
Yes. ALL these refills fit!
The back of the leather cover is stamped with Chris's logo. And again, unlike the Pelle whose stamp was barely visible because it was poorly stamped, this logo is well done.
Leather Journal Cover F.B
Seriously, don't you want one now?
Bonus: If you need new bands for your cover, Chris will ship them to you free of charge. Classy!

The plastic-type elastic is really good. It's super snug and holds everything in place really well. I'm not too excited about the black plastic. I think it would have been nice if it was a different colored elastic - purely for vanity reasons. There's absolutely nothing wrong with the black - I just like colors and contrast.
Davis Leatherworks Leather Journal Elastic
Davis Leatherworks Leather Journal Elastic
Davis Leatherworks Leather Journal Elastic
Note how much simpler the elastic is attached to the journal.
Davis Leatherworks Leather Journal Elastic
Good and snug.
Davis Leatherworks Leather Journal
With a Midori Traveler's Notebook replacement band. Just so you can see the pretty factor!
Davis Leatherworks Leather Journal
And with a Pelle replacement elastic too. 
The only thing I noticed was in a few spots on the inside cover, I could see the market that was used to outline the shape of the cover for cutting. I kind of rubbed it with my thumb to 'scuff' it up and it eventually went away. It was dark blue and almost not noticeable at all. I only mention it because I want to offer a thorough review. This does not affect the performance nor awesomeness of this cover. I am still totally floored by it! ESPECIALLY for the wicked price.
Davis Leatherworks Leather Journal Cover Empty
If you look closely around the edges, you can see some blue marker. It scuffs off, so you needn't worry. It's just something you might notice. 
Want to see what it looks like hanging out with a Pelle and a Midori Traveler's Notebook? Of course you do.
Davis Leatherworks, Midori TN, Pelle Journal
Top to bottom: Davis Leatherworks tawny veg leather journal cover, Midori Traveler's Notebook and a Pelle journal.
Davis Leatherworks, Midori TN, Pelle Journal
Top to bottom: Davis Leatherworks tawny veg leather journal cover, Midori Traveler's Notebook and a Pelle journal.
Davis Leatherworks, Midori TN, Pelle Journal
Top to bottom: Davis Leatherworks tawny veg leather journal cover, Midori Traveler's Notebook and a Pelle journal.
Journals Sides
Bottom to top: Davis Leatherworks tawny veg leather journal cover, Midori Traveler's Notebook and a Pelle journal. Unfinished edge. 
Davis Leatherworks, Midori TN, Pelle Journal
Top to bottom: Davis Leatherworks tawny veg leather journal cover, Midori Traveler's Notebook and a Pelle journal. Only the Traveler's Notebook is holding two refills.
Davis Leatherworks, Midori TN, Pelle Journal
Top to bottom: Davis Leatherworks tawny veg leather journal cover, Midori Traveler's Notebook and a Pelle journal. Nice and easy to replace the band. 
Davis Leatherworks, Midori TN, Pelle Journal
Top to bottom: Davis Leatherworks tawny veg leather journal cover, Midori Traveler's Notebook and a Pelle journal.
What's the difference between them? A simpler elastic band attachment method, and unfinished edges. This particular leather cover is designed for one refill, though I was able to squish two in (using the same elastic).

Price
Notebook Cover - $15.00 + $3.00 shipping and if you consider the fact that Chris includes a notebook with your cover, it becomes an even better deal.

You can also contact Chris directly if you want something custom made - for a particular notebook perhaps!

If you are at all interested in this beautiful work, see the funding campaign here and consider offering your support!

Contact & Connect With Davis Leatherworks
Browse the awesome website!
Facebook
Twitter
Etsy
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Email

Peek at Another (Awesome) Review!
Comfortable Shoes Studio

Overall
I very much think you should go to Chris's shop and check out the goods he has made. I am totally blown away by the quality of all three of these products - the business card holder (review to come soon!), the eyeglasses case (review to come soon!), and especially the leather notebook cover. They all look and feel so professional, especially with the amazing hand-stitching work. All these products radiate quality! And if you're in the market for a Pelle or a Midori Traveler's Notebook, I can honestly say - the Davis Leatherworks notebook cover gives both of these a run for their money, and may even beat out the Pelle, if I had to pick between the two.

As Less mentioned in her review, Chris does include a Bible quote with his products. However, it was not intrusive, and I did not feel uncomfortable with it. Plus, he's been an absolute pleasure to communicate with. If you are non-religious, or against religious speech, please don't let this deter you.

Full Disclosure: I was sent this sample to try out and review, but this did not influence my opinion whatsoever. I'd still be full of wonderful things to say!

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