Thursday, June 21, 2018

Review: @ManuscriptShop Journals - Large & Pocket

Thanks to Manuscript for sending these notebooks for a review! I've had them for awhile as they were switching their paper from the older (fountain pen-friendly) version to the new version I have here.
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ABOUT

Large - Pride & Prejudice, Le Petit Print
Price: $11.00USD
Size: 5.5" x 8.2"  |  A5
Textured cover stock
Page count: 86
Binding: Sewn
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Pocket - 3 or 6 packs - Moby Dick, Alexandre Dumas, Alive in Wonderland
Price for 3: $11.00USD
Price for 6: $21.00USD
Size: 3.5" x 5.5"
Page count: 48
Textured cover stock
Binding: Sewn
Where to buy: Manuscript Shop
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PACKAGING

I like the no-waste packaging Manuscript Shop used - the large journal was not wrapped in plastic or anything unnecessary of the sort. The pack of pocket notebooks had a Manuscript-branded belly band holding them together.

APPEARANCE

The notebooks share the same design - textured, semi-flexible cardstock covers, thread sewn bindings, sharp edges, and cream paper inside. The only one with rounded corners is the pocket Alice in Wonderland notebook. Each notebook has the Manuscript logo and a quote on the back cover. The inside of each front cover has a table of contents with no ruling. This is an interesting choice as the pages are not numbered yet. This could be convenient so you can number accordingly, or it could be a pain if you must number them all yourself. The paper is cream colored, blank, and fairly light.
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The notebooks are quite pretty, especially with the detailed covers. These look great as textured cardstock. They are well made and I appreciate the attention to detail - smooth cuts, clean binding, nice and tidy.

PERFORMANCE & FEEL

I love the sizes of both notebooks - A5 and pocket - and the flat, slim profiles. I love the sewn bindings as it makes the notebooks easy to open fully, write in, and stay flat. Perfectly portable. The textured covers not only look great, they feel great, too. They keep the pages inside nice and safe, unless you bash the corners roughly in a bag, for example. I found the large notebooks a little more flexible than the pocket notebooks.
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The paper is slightly toothy and is somewhat thin to the touch. Pencils do well and are pleasant to write with. The tooth gave the lead something to hold on to - lots of fun for hand lettering and sketching because of the tooth. Ballpoints, roller balls, and gel pens write well but wet inks feathered and bled through to varying degrees. Markers wrote well and feathered less than I expected but there was definitely bleed through. I didn't mind ballpoints because it made the pages feel crinkly and tactile!
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Last but not least: fountain pens. Nope. The paper is not at all fountain pen friendly, not even for fine or dry nibs. I experienced feathering, bleed through, and show through with all fountain pens I tested. This is definitely pencil and ballpoint paper - ideal for on the go.
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PROS & CONS
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OVERALL

These are very pretty, well-made notebooks, great for those who favor ballpoint pens and pencils. I personally tend to use ballpoint pens in my pocket notebooks so that is okay for me. If you are looking for fountain pen friendly notebooks, these are not for you. The prices are not unreasonable but the paper feels pretty thin and is not particularly outstanding. I usually expect around $10USD for a three pack of non fountain pen friendly paper. The extra dollar may be worth it if you like the themes and covers. Given the prices and the non fountain pen friendly paper in the large notebooks, I would probably not buy those.







I received this item free of charge for the purposes of this review. I was not compensated monetarily for my review. Everything you've read here is my own opinion.

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GourmetPens by Azizah Asgarali is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
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