Clairefontaine Loose Leaf Paper Rules!

Clairefontaine Loose Leaf Paper Package
Clairefontaine Loose Leaf Paper Package

Just about everyone in the USA and Canada is familiar with the bulk packages of loose leaf paper for 3-ring binders that are purchased in late summer at the the beginning of every school year. Loose leaf paper is generally utilitarian: very cheap in quality and price and not meant for enjoying the pleasure of writing. If you’d like loose leaf paper that goes above and beyond common no-frills paper, the exceptional quality of Clairefontaine loose leaf paper will take you to a much higher level.

Clairefontaine Loose Leaf Paper - Ruled with Margin
Clairefontaine Loose Leaf Paper – Ruled with Margin

Clairefontaine is a French paper manufacturer that is famous for the fine quality of its products. Their loose leaf paper has a weight of 90 g so it is thicker than ordinary binder paper. The paper has an ultra-smooth finish that keeps your pen happily gliding across the page. Fountain pens write like a dream on this paper because there are very few, if any, problems with ink feathering, bleeding through or showing through the paper.

Clairefontaine Loose Leaf Paper - Pastel Graph
Clairefontaine Loose Leaf Paper – Pastel Graph

Clairefontaine standard loose leaf paper is bright white so you can really enjoy the full impact of any color of ink you choose to write with. It is also available in packs of pastel colors that can be useful for organization. The paper has pale violet lines and comes in these formats: ruled, French ruled, graph (5 mm x 5 mm grid) and blank.

Many of these loose sheets are metric A4 size which is approximately 8 1/4″ x 11 3/4″ compared to common 8 1/2″ x 11″ paper in the USA. They are meant to be held in 3-ring or 4-ring A4 size binders which can be rather hard to come by in the USA but they are regularly imported and sold at Writer’s Bloc.

The funky arrangement of holes punched in this paper allows it to fit inside American 3-ring binders, but the paper will stick out a little from the top and bottom of the binder. If you need to use an American standard size binder, this problem can be solved by taking the paper in to a local print shop or office supply store and having a little trimmed off the bottom and top of the pages.

Clairefontaine 4-Ring Binder for Loose Leaf A4 Size Paper
Clairefontaine 4-Ring Binder for Loose Leaf A4 Size Paper

Clairefontaine also has double sheets, which are A3 size pages folded in half to make a double A4 size sheet that’s connected at the spine. In French they are called “Copies Doubles Perforees” or in English “Double Sheets”.

Clairefontaine Double Sheets - French Ruled
Clairefontaine Double Sheets – French Ruled

Since Clairefontaine manufactures their own paper, they can guaranty consistent quality and they can control the environmental impact of the manufacturing process. Their paper is made from materials sourced from certified sustainable forests, is chlorine-free and is only printed with natural inks. Clairefontaine supplies most of their own energy and they are committed to waste reduction and recycling.

We love Clairefontaine loose leaf paper so much that we make a special effort to import it from France. It takes a few months of travel in a shipping container to get it to the USA but we feel it’s definitely worth the wait!

Clairefontaine 90g Paper Writing Test - Front
Clairefontaine 90g Paper Writing Test – Front
Clairefontaine 90g Paper Writing Test - Back
Clairefontaine 90g Paper Writing Test – Back
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New! Quo Vadis Plan & Note Planner Review

Quo Vadis Plan & Note Planner and Platinum Cool Fountain Pen
Quo Vadis Plan & Note Planner and Platinum Cool Fountain Pen

Brand new from Quo Vadis this year is the Plan & Note Weekly Planner. It has an open format, which means it doesn’t have an hour by hour schedule or a lot of extra details. It simply and effectively gives you the space and freedom to organize your days according to your own personal needs.

It has one week on two pages, with Monday through Thursday on the left page and Friday through Sunday on the right page. Each day has 7 blank lines for recording your appointments, thoughts, memos, plans and adventures plus an extra eight lines for notes on the bottom right. It does make a note of major holidays as well as phases of the moon. The week of the year is mentioned on the bottom of the right page.

Quo Vadis Plan & Note Planner - Open Format
Quo Vadis Plan & Note Planner – Open Format

The very beginning of the planner has a page for your personal information and a page with a calendar of the current year. There are also 12 monthly planning pages – one for each month of the year. Each month has a six-week Monday through Sunday calendar grid to keep your plans on track. Major holidays and phases of the moon are listed here.

Quo Vadis Plan & Note Planner - Monthly Planning
Quo Vadis Plan & Note Planner – Monthly Planning

The back of the Plan & Note Planner has a one page calendar for the next year and 2 pages of anno-planning for keeping track of future events.

Quo Vadis Plan & Note Planner - Anno-Planning
Quo Vadis Plan & Note Planner – Anno-Planning

There’s also a bound-in 9 page address book for recording snail-mail addresses, email addresses, phone numbers etc. The very back of the planner has an extra 2 lined pages for notes.

Quo Vadis Plan & Note Planner - Address Book
Quo Vadis Plan & Note Planner – Address Book

The Plan & Note’s paper, cover and binding are all noteworthy. First, the brilliantly smooth paper is made by Clairefontaine. The large Plan & Note Desk Planner has glorious 90 g paper that works wonderfully with fountain pens. The pocket size planner has 64 g paper to keep it nice and compact. The pages are bright white with 2 color printing and have tear-off corners to help you find your place.

The cover is flexible with a pleasing velvety soft touch. It is streamlined and simple with only the year and Quo Vadis logo blind embossed on the front and only a logo on the bottom center of the back. The cover is mostly black, with a colorful re-inforced spine and matching elastic closure. This year’s colors include Turquoise, Rose and Violet.

It has a stitched binding so that pages won’t fall out and it can open flat. The spine is flexible enough that the planner can be completely opened backwards without breaking.

Quo Vadis Plan & Note Planner - Flexible Spine
Quo Vadis Plan & Note Planner – Flexible Spine

The Quo Vadis Plan and Note comes in two different sizes: a 6″ x 8.25″ Desk Planner and a 4″ x 6″ Pocket Size Planner. These planners are not on our shelves just yet, so send us an email if you’d like us to order one for you!

Quo Vadis Plan & Note Planner - Turquoise
Quo Vadis Plan & Note Planner – Turquoise
Quo Vadis Plan & Note Planner: Turquoise, Rose and Violet
Quo Vadis Plan & Note Planner: Turquoise, Rose and Violet
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The New & Improved Quo Vadis Minister Planner

Quo Vadis Minister Planner - Black Soho Cover
Quo Vadis Minister Planner – Black Soho Cover

This year Quo Vadis is offering us a new and improved version of their Minister planner, available both in academic and calendar year formats. The Minister weekly appointment book was already an enduring favorite, so how was it improved?

Quo Vadis Minister - Monthly Planning Pages
Quo Vadis Minister Monthly Planning Pages and a Platinum Cool Fountain Pen

The most significant improvement to this planner is the addition of monthly planning pages, one page for each month of the year. Each of the 12 monthly planning pages includes 6 Monday-to-Sunday weeks, so there is plenty of room to jot down notes on days just before or following the end of each month. Each day has a record of what day number of the year it is as well as how many days in the year are left remaining. The phases of the moon as well as some common holidays are also mentioned on their corresponding days. The monthly calendar grid gives you about 7/8″ x 1-1/8″ of space per day.

Quo Vadis Minister Planner
Quo Vadis Minister Planner

The next thing I noticed is that the planner now has crisp grey and teal print instead of just grey print as is in my Minister from a previous year. The teal adds some subtle highlights without being too bright.

The Quo Vadis Minister maintains its high quality with smooth, extra-white 90g Clairefontaine paper. The outstanding paper is definitely a major highlight of this weekly planner. This paper makes it easy to write on both sides of the page since it minimizes any ink showing through or bleeding through to the opposite side of the page. Fountain pens write like a dream on this paper!

Quo Vadis Minister - Anno-Planning Pages
Quo Vadis Minister – Anno-Planning Pages

The contents of this planner have changed a little bit, especially in the beginning section, so if you’ve been using the Quo Vadis Minister to schedule past years you may notice a few differences. Immediately following the title page is a 2-page annual plan for the current year – the organization of your year at a single glance. On these anno-planning pages each month has one column for jotting down outstanding events throughout the year. Here’s an example of a couple of pages where you’ll notice the teal highlights – each Sunday and major holiday has been highlighted with a pale teal color. Phases of the moon also show up on these pages. Following the anno-planning pages are the 12 monthly planning pages (mentioned above) and then the weekly planning pages begin.

Quo Vadis Minister - Weekly Planning Pages
Quo Vadis Minister – Weekly Planning Pages

The weekly planning pages make up the bulk of the content in the Minister. One week is displayed on two pages, starting with Monday on the left through Friday and Saturday on the right page and Sunday at the bottom. Here’s a list of the details:

  • 8 am to 9pm schedule in 1/2 hour increments
  • Each day has a small box at the top for listing priorities
  • Day number of the year and days remaining is mentioned
  • Week number of the year in top right
  • Quarter number of the year in top right
  • 3-month calendar view also in top right
  • Current week is highlighted in the 3-month calendar
  • 3″ wide column on right page for phone numbers, email addresses, websites, expenses, notes and whatever else you want to record
  • Teal week number of the year tabs along the right side
  • Phases of the moon
  • Major holidays
  • Tear-off page corners
  • 12 months + 3 weeks of weekly appointment pages (December to December in the yearly planner, July to July in the Academic version)
Quo Vadis Minister - Weekly Planning Pages
Quo Vadis Minister – Weekly Planning Pages

The final section following the weekly planning pages in the calendar year version of the Minister begins with a new 2-page monthly plan for January of the following year (different in the Academic version). The features of this monthly plan are the same as the earlier monthly planner pages with the addition of a notes column on the right side of the right page. Then you’ve got another 2-page annual plan for the following year, world time zones and several maps, one lined notes page and a 3-year calendar on the very last page.

Quo Vadis Minister Planner
Quo Vadis Minister Planner

The Quo Vadis Minister Planner currently comes with an extra booklet that serves several functions. Page 1 is ruled for notes, pages 2 and 3 are for listing important anniversaries, etc throughout the year. After this there are 6 pages for recording names, addresses, websites and email addresses. There are 2 pages for writing down your passwords, 9 ruled pages for notes, 8 blank pages and 4 dot grid pages. A little bit of everything is in here! Additional address/memo booklets can be purchased separately from the planner.

Quo Vadis Minister - Password Pages in Notes Booklet
Quo Vadis Minister – Password Pages in Notes Booklet

The Minister has a sewn binding that enables you to open the book flat without the risk of pages falling out. It’s 6-1/4″ x 9-3/8″ in size (16 x 24 cm).

Texas, Club and Soho leatherette covers are available as well as Duo Leather covers. These covers can be refilled year after year without having to buy an extra cover every year.

To check out a writing test to see how well fountain pens and other writing instruments perform on this paper take a look at our review of the Monthly 4 Planner that contains the same type of 90g Clairefontaine paper. Scroll to the end of the post and you’ll find our tests.

Have you used Quo Vadis Planners? Which one is your favorite?

Quo Vadis Minister Planner with a Lilac Club Cover
Quo Vadis Minister Planner with a Lilac Club Cover & extra bookmark
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Space Saving Paper Notebooks

If you walk, bike or take public transportation to class or work, keeping your stationery supplies compact and light weight is a necessity. Paper notebooks that keep you organized while at the same time reducing bulk are much appreciated! Here are a few ideas to keep you streamlined while on the go.

Myndology Disc Bound Notebooks with 5/8" Discs
Myndology Disc Bound Notebooks with 5/8″ Discs

Myndology Disc Bound Notebooks

Myndology disc bound notebooks give you the flexibility of a 3-ring binder along with the compact size of a paper notebook. Specially shaped discs with matching punched paper allow each page to be removed and then put back into these notebooks. College ruled, blank and graph paper refills are available and so are folder and tab inserts that divide your notebooks into organized sections. These features are offered for both Myndology Letter (8.5″ x 11″) and Journal (6.5″ x 8.5″) sized notebooks. If you’ve never had the opportunity to try this style of notebook, take a look at our previous blog post that answers frequently asked questions about disc bound notebooks.

Myndology Notebook Folders and Tabs
Myndology Disc Bound Notebook Folders and Tabs

Clairefontaine Multiple Subject Notebooks

Clairefontaine Multiple Subject Notebooks use two different methods to divide your notebook into sections: by tabs on the right side of the page and by varying the pastel color of paper used in each section. You get anywhere from 4 to 12 sections, depending on if you buy the small, medium or large version of the notebook. The paper in this notebook has a 5 mm x 5 mm grid, so if you write small you can get a lot of notes into one notebook! For more information check out our detailed review of Clairefontaine Multiple Subject Notebooks.

Clairefontaine Multiple Subject Notebook - Medium
Clairefontaine Multiple Subject Notebook – Medium

Clairefontaine Twinbooks

Clairefontaine Twinbooks have extra white 90g paper that’s divided into two sections by 2 tabs cut into the right side of the paper. These notebooks are side-staple bound so they have a slim profile and there are no wires or discs to get in the way – great for left-handed writers! They come with either a 5 mm grid or ruled paper.

Clairefontaine Twinbook
Clairefontaine Twinbook

Clairefontaine Wirebound Notebook with Pockets

Clairefontaine Notebooks with Pockets are divided into three sections of 20 pages by 3 dividers that have 2 storage pockets – one on each side of the divider. These pockets are handy for storing paper receipts, notes, tickets, business cards or whatever slips of paper come your way each day. These medium size notebooks have micro-perforated pages so you can neatly remove them from your notebook. Available with tan, black, red, green, blue or multi-color covers.

Clairefontaine Medium Size Notebooks with Pockets
Clairefontaine Medium Size Notebooks with Pockets

What are your favorite space-saving notebooks?

 

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Clairefontaine Classic 3-Hole Punch Notebook Review

(Clairefontaine Classic 3-hole punch notebook)

Clairefontaine notebooks are well known for their exceptional paper quality. Even if you feel that these notebooks don’t look like much from the outside, it’s what is on the inside that really counts when it comes to your writing experience.

The 90g paper inside these notebooks boasts an exceptionally smooth satin finish and is bright white thanks to the calcium carbonate used in the manufacturing process. Clairefontaine manufactures their own paper from pulp and wood by-products from forests certified by PEFC to be sustainably managed. Clairefontaine is committed to minimizing their impact on the environment so their paper is chlorine-free, acid-free, pH neutral and is printed with natural inks.

Many writers who use fountain pens loyally use Clairefontaine paper because they feel that it is ideal for their writing needs! This fabulous paper eliminates or reduces troubles with ink that may feather or bleed through other types of paper and you can write on both sides of the page. The smoothness of the paper makes writing a dream! You can check out the performance of this paper by taking a look at the scanned writing samples below.

(Clairefontaine Classic 3-hole punch notebook paper fits inside a standard American 3-ring binder)

There are a few features that make the Clairefontaine Classic Notebook with the 3-hole punch stand out from other Clairefontaine notebooks. Since Clairefontaine is a European brand, most of their notebooks and paper products are metric sizes and might be a little different than what we are used to here in the USA. The Classic 3-hole punch notebook is standard American letter size – 8 1/2” x 11”. The 3-hole punch is sized to fit American 3-ring binders perfectly so you don’t need a special European binder to use this paper. Each page is microperforated so it can cleanly and easily be removed from the wire binding. In addition, most large size side wire bound or side staple bound Clairefontaine notebooks contain 48 or 50 sheets of paper. The Classic 3-hole punch notebook contains a generous 90 sheets of paper so it can carry you through a lot of note taking.

(Clairefontaine 90g paper writing test – front)

(Clairefontaine 90g paper writing test – back)

Clairefontaine Classic 3-hole punch notebook features include:

  • Ultra-smooth bright white 90g Clairefontaine paper
  • Excellent performance with fountain pens
  • 3 hole punched to fit standard American 3-ring binders
  • Each page is microperforated so it can cleanly be removed from the notebook
  • Lined with margin – lines are spaced 8mm apart
  • Acid-free, pH neutral, PEFC certified paper
  • Contains 90 sheets
  • Laminated heavy stock cover
  • Variety of abstract cover designs and colors changes over time
  • Side double wire spiral binding
  • Standard American letter size: 8 1/2” x 11”

If the Clairefontaine 3-hole punch notebook is just what you are looking for and you want to stock up, Writer’s Bloc offers an additional discount for a set of 5 notebooks.

Do you use Clairefontaine notebooks too? Why would you recommend them to other writers?

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