Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Review: Word Lined Notebooks - Swedish Camo

Don't we all need pocket notebooks for... well... our pockets? Or purses, or bags, or totes, or just to have on us in whatever you carry? I can't go anywhere without a pocket notebook. If I don't have one with me, I feel naked. I currently use Field Notes because they're cute and fun, and now I get to give these Word. notebooks a spin! Thank you Brenda from Word. Notebooks for sending these for me to review.

ABOUT

Size: 3.5" x 5"
Color: White
Ruling: Lined
Sheet Count: 48
Price: $9.99USD
Where to buy: Word

APPEARANCE
Word Lined Notebooks - Swedish Camo
These Word. notebooks are in the Swedish Camo pattern. They are traditional pocket notebook sized - not big, not too small - with clean, rounded corners on the outer edges. The spine is staple bound neatly. The cover has "Word." printed on it in a little white circle, amidst the pattern.  Inside, the pages are white, with really nice, easy on the eyes lines that are visible enough to serve their purpose. There are strange circles along the inside of the margins, and a little guide on how to use these on the inside of the front cover.
Word Lined Notebooks - Swedish Camo Blank
PERFORMANCE & FEEL

When you glance at these notebooks, surely you think of Field Notes. They share the same size and general function. The whole notebook feels sturdy and after bending it around and shoving it into my pocket and bag, it's held up well. The edges got a little wrinkly but it hasn't fallen apart - the staples have held and no pages have torn off.

The paper is neither overly smooth nor is it textured. It does not have a glossy coating on it. The paper in these pocket notebooks is quite similar to other pocket notebooks I am familiar with (such as Field Notes). It tolerates gel pens, pencils, ballpoints, and fine roller ball pens well. There is no bleed through or show through with these pens. I suspected it wouldn't work so well with fountain pens and I was right. Even fine nibs bled through the page and there is a lot of show through, as well as feathering with wetter writing.
Word Lined Notebooks - Swedish Camo Writing Sample
Word Lined Notebooks - Swedish Camo Writing Sample
The unique bullet point system used in Word. notebooks is explained on their product page.
...Lets you organize your tasks efficiently. Simply fill in the bullet point when writing an item on that line. Trace the circle around it when it’s important and add a slash when you’ve started work on it. Once the task is complete, simply mark down an “X” and move on to the next item on your list. It’s an easy way to keep track of all your notes. 
I very much like the unique bullet point system - it takes some getting used to but once you remember the symbols, it certainly helps to keep your pocket notebook tidy. (You should see my other ones... they're a disaster by the time they're full). The little circles are fun for color coordinating as well - color them in to indicate the importance or relevance of your task!
Word Lined Notebooks - Swedish Camo In a Pile
Top to bottom: Field Notes memo book, Word. notebook, Rhodiarama notebook, Quo Vadis habana.
PROS
  • Made in the USA.
  • Cover is 100% post-consumer recycled materials. 
  • Both cover and interior paper is acid-free.
  • Unique bullet point system used in Word. notebooks.
CONS  
  • Not fountain pen friendly. (Though they do not claim to be.)
OVERALL 

The Word. Notebooks are a cute, quaint pocket notebook - priced comparable to its competitors, and sharing similar qualities to them (made in the USA, acid-free paper). They have a variety of different covers to choose from. As for its ability to tolerate fountain pens, honestly, when I have a pocket notebook in my pocket, I am not using a fountain pen with it (a fountain pen couldn't actually fit in my pocket!). I'm using a gel pen, Fisher Space pen, or pencil with it. Of course this means some people will have no interest in it and that's totally fine. I think it's a fun option for those who are looking for a pocket notebook, so if fountain pen friendly paper is not a requirement, I do recommend you give Word. notebooks a whirl!

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I was provided these notebooks free of charge to sample, play with, get accustomed to, and review. I was not compensated monetarily to write this review. All opinions are my own. 

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