Greenery: 2017 Pantone Color of the Year Gift Guide

Greenery - Pantone Color of the Year 2017

Greenery – Pantone Color of the Year 2017

Pantone recently announced that the color of the year for 2017 is a shade called Greenery. Their website calls the Greenery “nature’s neutral” and provides this description of the color:

A refreshing and revitalizing shade, Greenery is symbolic of new beginnings.

Greenery is a fresh and zesty yellow-green shade that evokes the first days of spring when nature’s greens revive, restore and renew. Illustrative of flourishing foliage and the lushness of the great outdoors, the fortifying attributes of Greenery signals consumers to take a deep breath, oxygenate and reinvigorate.

I’m crazy about anything in the color yellow-green! We’ve put together a gift guide to help you shop for pens, ink and journals that are similar to this shade of green.

Greenery Themed Stationery

Greenery Themed Stationery

LAMY Safari Fountain Pen

The first fountain pen that came to my mind when I saw Greenery was this LAMY Safari fountain pen in green. If you haven’t already collected a Safari in this color this is a good year to do it! We replaced the regular nib on the pen in this photo with a calligraphy nib.

Pilot Prera Demonstrator Fountain Pen

The Pilot Prera Demonstrator Fountain Pen in Light Green has a clear body with a pop of green on the end of the barrel and cap. The nibs on Prera fountain pens are great if you have small handwriting or like to write with a very fine pen.

Pelikan M205 Duo Highlighter Fountain Pen

This Pelikan M205 Duo Highlighter Fountain Pen in Shiny Green is a special edition, so if this pen strikes your fancy don’t wait too long to add this to your desk. It comes equipped with a Broad BB nib and since it’s a fountain pen it can be refilled over and over again with highlighter ink. Our choice of ink? Why, of course matching Pelikan M205 Duo Highlighter Ink, also in Shiny Green.

Pilot Iroshizuku Fountain Pen Ink in Bamboo Forest Green (Chiku-Rin)

Chiku-Rin or Bamboo Forest fountain pen ink is a yellow green shade similar to the color of new growth on plants in the spring, which also happens to be the same color in nature that inspired the shade Greenery. Truly a beautiful and refreshing color!

J. Herbin Vert Pre Fountain Pen Ink

J. Herbin’s Vert Pre is another one of our favorite yellow-green fountain pen inks. The top of the glass bottle has a handy built-in place to rest your pen.  J. Herbin uses all natural dyes in their inks, which makes them non-toxic and pH neutral.

Rhodiarama Pad Holder - Anise Green

Rhodiarama Pad Holder – Anise Green

Rhodiarama Pad Holder No. 12 with Notepad – Anise Green

Carry your favorite Rhodia paper in this pocket-size refillable Rhodia notepad holder. It has a pen holder and pocket to stash receipts and business cards.

Rhodiarama Soft Cover Notebook - Anise Green Cover

Rhodiarama Soft Cover Notebook – Anise Green Cover

Rhodiarama Soft Cover Notebook with an Anise Green Cover

Your fountain pen will write like a dream on the high quality paper inside Rhodiarama soft cover notebooks. Your choice of lined or dot grid paper – just what those of you who are crazy about bullet journals have been waiting for!

Pentel Tradio Mechanical Pencil – Apple Green

The cap of the Apple Green Pentel Tradio mechanical pencil protects the tip from damage and breakage. It’s got a button on the side near the grip that you can click to advance the lead for uninterrupted writing.

Other ideas for a Greenery themed desk top include: the Quo Vadis Habana Journal in Anise Green, Quo Vadis Planner with a Bamboo Green Texas Cover, a Platinum Preppy Green Highlighter with Green Highlighting Ink, and the Staedtler Textsurfer Classic Green Highlighter. Several Clairefontaine notepads are available with yellow-green covers: you can request a yellow-green cover during order check out and if we’ve got that color in stock we will send it to you.

What yellow-green stationery items do you have on your desk?

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How Do I Know What Refill I Need For My Quo Vadis or Exacompta Planner?

How to find the name of the Quo Vadis planner refill that you need.

How to find the name of the Quo Vadis planner refill that you need.

It’s Autumn again and time to start thinking about buying a brand new paper planner for the upcoming year. If you’ve got a Quo Vadis or Exacompta agenda planning diary with a refillable cover, all you need to get is a paper refill. The trouble is, it’s been a whole year and you can’t remember the name of the planner that you bought last year.

There’s an easy solution to this problem. Open the front cover of your current planner and look at the first printed page on the right. The name of the planner refill you need is located to the left of the year. In the example above, the name of the refill is the “Minister.” Problem solved!

Writers Bloc routinely carries refills for the following Exacompta and Quo Vadis yearly planners:

We also have refills for these academic year planners for students:

Have a great year everyone!

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Why Use a Paper Appointment Book or Planner?

In the age of smart phones and digital calendars, why on earth would anyone want to continue using a paper planner to schedule appointments? I personally have both a digital and a paper calendar because I find that each one has a particular role to help keep my life organized. Here are some of my favorite reasons to use an old-fashioned paper appointment book to keep track of my schedule:

1. The act of writing by hand is a memory aid. When I pick up a pen and write down events in my schedule I am much more likely to remember these events without looking at any calendar – whether it’s paper or digital!

2. You can use your beloved fountain pens to write in your planner. Yes, you know who you are. If you’re like me, writing with a fountain pen is a satisfying, calming experience. (Check out our list of Fountain Pen Friendly Planners if this applies to you.)

3. It slows you down and helps you to focus. There are no notifications, videos, ads, texts, etc to get in the way of your thoughts as you put your pen to paper. Distractions can cause me to schedule things poorly but a paper organizer eliminates digital “clutter” as I plan out my weeks.

4. A paper planner can also become a memory book. I seldom look back through my digital records to reminisce, but a paper diary or record of my past events has a much more personal feeling to it.

5. It encourages creativity and is fun to personalize. I really enjoy using a different style and type of planner each year. Some planners I’ve used are very traditional and business-like, other years I’ll choose something pocket-size or a planner with eye-catching artwork. Inside I like to mix it up with a variety of ink colors and a some doodles. Some people go all-out and completely decorate their planners with stickers and memorabilia. Emotions can also be expressed with the fonts and style of handing writing that you use.

6. Handwriting is also good exercise for the brain and we all need more of that, right?

7. Writing in a planner or diary is an opportunity to help keep your penmanship in tip-top shape.

8. Maybe it’s just me – I really prefer the “week at a glance” or “month at a glance” view in a paper planner over a digital planner, especially for the non-work related events in my personal life.

Do you use a paper appointment book? Why do you enjoy recording upcoming events using pen & paper? Planners for 2016 are now in stock at Writer’s Bloc.

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Sizing Up Quo Vadis Weekly Appointment Books

Quo Vadis Planners with Soho Covers

Quo Vadis Planners with Soho Covers

When it comes to keeping track of your schedule in a paper weekly appointment book one size definitely does not fit all. Some of you want a planner that fits in your pocket or purse, while others want a large work-horse capable of keeping track of a very detailed schedule. Quo Vadis comes to the rescue with a full line of planners with a classic week on 2 pages scheduling format. The size and features, such the amount of room for notes, vary from planner to planner. Typically, the larger planners have more features than the smaller planners but they all have the same basic page format.

Generally, these weekly appointment books include:

  • Boxes on the right side of the right page to jot down information such as phone numbers, email addresses, expenses and other notes.
  • Weekdays usually have a schedule from 8am to 9pm in half hour increments.
  • Weekdays each have a box at the top of the day to list priorities
  • Sunday is the least prominent day of the schedule.
  • Monthly calendar(s) in the top right corner of the right page
  • A notation to tell you which week of the year & day of the year it is
  • Section for addresses
  • A yearly calendar
  • Most can be purchased with a refillable cover or as just a refill
  • Acid-free, pH neutral paper
  • Planners with 90g paper are fountain pen friendly
  • Sewn binding
  • Tear off page corners

Here’s our list of Quo Vadis planners with a similar weekly appointment schedule format, from smallest to largest, mentioning a few of the features that make them special:

Business

  • 4 x 6″ compact pocket size
  • Calendar year
  • 64g white paper

University Academic (same page format as Business, shown above)

  • 4 x 6″ compact pocket size
  • Academic school year
  • 64g white paper

Executive

  • 6.25 x 6.25″ square shape
  • Calendar year
  • 90g white paper

Minister

  • 6.25 x 9.38″
  • Calendar year
  • 90g white paper

Minister Academic

  • 6.25 x 9.38″
  • Academic school year
  • 90g white paper

Trinote

  • 7 x 9.38″
  • Calendar year
  • 90g white paper
  • Space for notes at the bottom of each day’s plans
Quo Vadis Septanote Academic Planner

Quo Vadis Septanote Academic Planner

Septanote Academic

  • 7 x 9.38″
  • Academic school year
  • 90g white paper
  • Space for notes at the bottom of each day’s plans
Quo Vadis President Weekly Appointment Book

Quo Vadis President Weekly Appointment Book

President

  • 8.25 x 10.5″
  • Calendar year
  • 90g white paper

Prenote

  • 8.25 x 11.63″
  • Calendar year
  • 90g white paper
  • Space for notes at the bottom of each day’s plans
Quo Vadis Quarter Weekly Appointment Book

Quo Vadis Quarter Weekly Appointment Book

Quarter

  • 9.5 x 11.75″
  • Calendar year
  • 90g white paper
  • Spiral bound with a polypro cover
  • 15 minute intervals for appointments
  • 7am to 8:45pm schedule
  • Largest Quo Vadis Weekly Appointment Book

Do you use a Quo Vadis planner? What are your paper planner’s favorite features?

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Find a Pocket Size Planner with High-Quality Paper

Space 17 Weekly Planner & Pelikan Fountain Pen

Space 17 Weekly Planner & Pelikan Fountain Pen

In order to conserve on size, space and weight many pocket-size planners use thin low-quality paper that may not provide a very satisfying writing experience. Where can a pocket planner be found with good quality paper? Quo Vadis, Exacompta and Rhodia come to the rescue! Clairefontaine has a reputation for creating some of the best paper in the world for writing, and these brands have chosen to use Clairefontaine’s French-milled paper for their compact datebooks.

The gold standard 90g bright white, super-smooth Clairefontaine paper that is fantastic for fountain pens can be found in two pocket-size Quo Vadis monthly planners:

Several Quo Vadis, Exacompta & Rhodia pocket-planners contain 64g bright white Clairefontaine paper that has an ultra-smooth finish. This paper is acid-free, pH neutral and PEFC certified.  You can find this wonderful paper in the following planners, most of which have a weekly planning format:

Another Clairefontaine paper variation is a light-weight, exceptionally strong 55g ivory paper. It is acid-free, pH neutral and PEFC certified. Both of these weekly planners contain this type of paper:

We’ve had many of our readers ask if Clairefontaine’s 64g white paper and 55g ivory paper are suitable for fountain pens. I can say that I’ve personally used it successfully with a fine nib fountain pen and select inks. However, this may not be true for all inks and all fountain pens. To help you decide if you’d like to try these datebooks for yourself, we created some samples using various nib sizes and inks. Take a look at the results below.

If writing with a fountain pen is the most important thing to you and not the size of the planner itself, we would recommend taking a look at this previous post: Fountain Pen Friendly Planners

Have you discovered any pocket-size planners with high-quality paper that you like to use? Please let us know what they are in the comments – we’d like to hear from you!

Front side of the page 64g paper. A Quo Vadis Business Planner (same format as University Academic) was used for this sample:

64g White Clairefontaine Paper Writing Test - Front

64g White Clairefontaine Paper Writing Test – Front

Back side of the page 64g paper (Quo Vadis Business Planner):

64g White Clairefontaine Paper Writing Test - Back

64g White Clairefontaine Paper Writing Test – Back

Front side of the page 64g paper (Biweek Planner):

64g White Clairefontaine Paper Writing Test (Biweek) - Front

64g White Clairefontaine Paper Writing Test (Biweek) – Front

Back side of the page 64g paper (Biweek Planner):

64g White Clairefontaine Paper Writing Test (Biweek) - Back

64g White Clairefontaine Paper Writing Test (Biweek) – Back

Front side of the page 55g soft ivory paper (Space 17 Planner):

55g Soft Ivory Clairefontaine Paper Writing Test (Space 17) - Front

55g Soft Ivory Clairefontaine Paper Writing Test (Space 17) – Front

Back side of the page 55g soft ivory paper (Space 17 Planner):

55g Soft Ivory Clairefontaine Paper Writing Test (Space 17) - Back

55g Soft Ivory Clairefontaine Paper Writing Test (Space 17) – Back

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A Shopping Guide for Choosing the Perfect Appointment Book or Planner

Exacompta Forum Journal Undated Planners

There are currently so many styles of appointment books, diaries and planners to choose from. If you don’t already have a favorite how can you find a format that is just right for you? Here is a shopping guide that groups a bunch of our favorite planners into categories that will help you get just what you need. In each category the planners are listed from the smallest (at the top) to the largest in size.

DAILY PLANNERS

For Detailed Schedules

Exacompta Journal 21

For General Plans

Alice’s Diary – 7321 Design (undated)
Quo Vadis Notor
Exacompta Forum Journal (undated)

With Room For Notes

Alice’s Diary – 7321 Design (undated)
Quo Vadis Notor
Exacompta Forum Journal (undated)
Exacompta Journal 21

WEEKLY PLANNERS

For Detailed Schedules

Exacompta Visual
Quo Vadis Minister
Bob’s Your Uncle 8-Days-A-Week Planner Journal (undated)
Quo Vadis Trinote
Quo Vadis Prenote

For General Plans

Quo Vadis Miniweek
Bob’s Your Uncle 8-Days-A-Week Mini Planner (undated)
Quo Vadis Business
Rhodia Webplanner
Exacompta Space 17
Quo Vadis Biweek
Quo Vadis Executive
Leuchtturm 1917 Weekly Planner & Notebook
Quo Vadis Hebdo
Exacompta Space 24
Quo Vadis IB Traveler Pocket Planner

With Room For Notes

Rhodia Webplanner
Exacompta Space 17
Leuchtturm 1917 Weekly Planner & Notebook
Exacompta Space 24
Quo Vadis IB Traveler Pocket Planner

MONTHLY PLANNERS

For General Plans

Quo Vadis Visoplan
Quo Vadis Monthly 4

With Room For Notes

Quo Vadis Monthly 4

SPECIAL NEEDS

If it is important that your appointment book contains fountain pen friendly paper take a look at this list of suggestions: Fountain Pen Friendly Planners

If you’re looking for a planner that covers a school year (starting the year in July or August) check out this blog post: What is an Academic Planner?

If you would like to know if an “undated” planner is suitable for you can read more about them here: Undated Planners featuring Choo Choo Diary Season V.

What is your favorite planner format?

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Exacompta Journal 21 Daily Calendar Review

Journal 21 by Exacompta Paris is a refillable daily planner made with delightfully smooth Clairefontaine paper. The format of Journal 21 is ideal for both advance planning or as a diary recording each day’s thoughts one day at a time. Each day has twenty-seven 6mm narrow ruled lines with time increments listed on the far left. The Clairefontaine paper inside Journal 21 is 72g and it is tinted a very soft green color with blue and grey/black print.

Journal 21 measures about 5 1/4” x 8 1/4” – similar in size to the large Rhodia Webnotebook but it’s thicker and a the pages are about 1/4” less wide. It has a stitched binding to keep it from falling apart and to help it to open flat. The bottom corner of each page is perforated and can be torn off after each day is completed so that you can easily find your place. If you buy Journal 21 with a Club or Soho cover an elastic Quo Vadis bookmark can be purchased as an accessory that comes in handy to mark your place and keep your planner securely closed. An additional feature to help you navigate this planner is that the names of the months are printed in blue boxes that are visible on the page edges and they are staggered from top to bottom like tabs would be.

(Journal 21 with a blue Club cover)

Journal 21 comes with a few different durable and refillable cover options. Current cover options can be viewed at Writer’s Bloc. There is the stitched, grained leatherette Club cover that comes in several different colors.

(Journal 21 with black Soya cover)

The Soya cover – now replaced by the Soho cover – has different color choices and it is also saddle stitched, but this leather-like material has a smooth finish.

There is a Texas vinyl cover that comes in several colors and it has a soft faux-suede finish. Of course, you can always make your own cover or just use the Journal 21 refill as it is with its plain, white cardboard cover.

Journal 21 begins with a title page followed by a page that records useful personal information including emergency contact info and where the planner can be returned to if it happens to get lost. There is a list of dates for US holidays during the current planner year and the following year, as well as major world holidays of the current year (covers 11 countries: Canada, China, France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, Spain and Switzerland). There’s a page with a whole bunch of international telephone access codes and another page showing a map of the US with time zones.

Following all of that there is a semi-annual planner that spans 6 pages and covers a year and a half of plans – for the 2012 planner it includes July 2011 through December 2012.

Next comes a monthly plan that covers 16 months – for 2012 it covers November 2011 all the way through February of 2013. Each month shows the previous month and following month on the bottom of the page. Saturdays and Sundays are combined into one column on the right to save space.

The daily calendar has one day per page and covers 8am to 9pm plans broken down into half hour increments. The page on the left shows the current month with the current week in a bold font, and the right page displays the following month. Each day also shows which day number it is out of 365, and which week number of the year it is. The very top of the page lists the current date and day of the week.

The back of Journal 21 includes a yearly planner for the following year, in this case it is for 2013.

Lastly, there is a fourteen page alphabetical address, phone number and email section.

The paper performed pretty well with all types of pens including fountain pens (minus the Sharpie pen ink bleed-through). In order to prevent this diary from being too thick and heavy, the paper weight is 72g which does allow some of the ink to show through to the back side of the page, although I personally did not feel that it was overly bad. Journal 21’s soft green paper has the beautifully smooth finish that most Clairefontaine paper has which means that fountain pen ink does take a little while to dry. Take a look at the writing test and see what you think:

(Writing test – front)

(Writing test – back)

Journal 21 has a lot of great features to help you plan a successful year. Do you use Exacompta Journal 21? What’s your favorite daily planner?

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Exacompta Paper Chart

Exacompta makes planners, journals, sketchbooks and index cards with a variety of high quality papers. Some of the paper is a little different than the usual Clairefontaine and Rhodia paper that many of you may be used to using. For example, some of their planners such as the popular Journal 21 and Space 24 weekly agenda contain a light green tinted paper. Other planners such as the Daily Pocket diary contain light-weight but sturdy ivory paper to help make them as compact as possible. The Basics Journal and Sketchbook both contain 100g paper that is 25% cotton with a laid finish. Exacompta Index Cards are made from a 205g stock in soft pastel colors and they work beautifully with a fountain pen! You can check out Exaclair’s Exacompta paper chart to get some insight into the specific paper used in each product.

Product Weight Description
Forum Journals / Refills 64 g White paper, 365 daily undated, blank, graph, cloth bound
Club Journals / Refills 64 g White paper, 365 daily undated, blank, graph
Pocket Journal 55 g Ivory, gold edged paper, ruled, cloth bound
Basics Journal 100 g Off-white, gold or silver edged paper, cloth bound
Basics Sketchbook 100 g Laid finish, 25% cotton, off-white paper, blank, silver edged, cloth bound
Index Cards / Bristol Cards 205 g Graph, subtle pastel colors – yellow, pink, green, blue
Visual Weekly Agenda 90 g Green-tinted paper
Space 24 Weekly Agenda 90 g Green-tinted paper
Journal 21 Daily Agenda 72 g Green-tinted paper
Space 17 55 g Ivory Paper
Daily Pocket 55 g Ivory Paper

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Choosing Your Quo Vadis Planner Based on the Paper

Quo Vadis Planners come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes and colors, and all of them contain high-quality paper with a pleasantly smooth writing surface. If you are particular about your paper, how do you know which one contains just the right paper for you?

If you’re looking for a planner that is as light-weight and compact as possible, easy to carry around and stash discreetly in a purse or pocket, 64g or 55g paper helps to reduce size and weight. One of my favorite small planners is the Exacompta Daily Pocket Diary.

If you are a fountain pen user, Quo Vadis recommends paper that is 85g or higher, although many prefer the 90g paper. As is typical of Quo Vadis planners, there is little to no feathering or bleed-through of fountain pen ink on this paper, and the weight of 85g or higher has the added advantage of preventing most ink see-through.

Although Quo Vadis manufactures all of their paper in an environmentally responsible fashion, if you’re the type that wants to stick to recycled products, then the Quo Vadis Basic or Equology lines of planners are for you. (More Quo Vadis Basic planners are expected to be in our shop soon.)

If you’re picky about paper color, Quo Vadis gives you the choice of extra white, white, ivory and even a pale green color of paper such as found in the super-popular daily planner Journal 21.

If you love graph paper, Rhodia Weekly Planners provide a grid area along with each week’s plans for drawing and taking notes.

Quo Vadis comes to the rescue and provides us with the following informative chart on the types of paper contained in Quo Vadis planners. (We left the Quo Vadis Notebooks on the end of this list for your reference.) Which Quo Vadis Planner is your favorite?

Quo Vadis Paper Chart

Edition Weight Color
Trinote 90g extra white
Minister 90g extra white
Academic Minister 90g extra white
Prenote 90g extra white
President 90g extra white
Principal® 90g extra white
Scholar 90g extra white
Septanote 90g extra white
Note 27 90g ivory
Monthly 4 90g extra white
Quarter 90g extra white
Executive 90g extra white
Visual 90g green tint
Space 24 90g green tint
Rhodia Weekly Notebook 6 x 9 90g extra white
Rhodia Weekly Notebook 6 x 9 Academic 90g extra white
Visoplan 90g extra white
President Equology 89g white
Minister Equology 89g white
Scholar Equology 89g white
Exaplan 85g extra white
Textagenda Equology 74g white
Sapa X Equology 74g white
Journal 21 72g green tint
Business 64g extra white
Sapa X 64g extra white
Sapa X Academic 64g extra white
Notor 64g extra white
Textagenda 64g extra white
IB Traveler 64g extra white
ABP1 64g extra white
Biweek 64g extra white
University 64g extra white
Student 64g extra white
Rhodia Weekly Notebook 4 x 6 64g extra white
Rhodia Weekly Notebook 4 x 6 Academic 64g extra white
Miniweek 55g ivory
Space 17 55g ivory
Daily Pocket 55g ivory
Notebooks
Habana large ruled 90g extra white
Habana large blank 90g extra white
Habana pocket blank 90g extra white
Habana pocket ruled 64g extra white
Robert le heros large ruled 90g extra white
Robert le heros pocket ruled 64g extra white
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Paper PDAs

 

In the era of i-everything, talking maps in every language imaginable, and phones that can practically beam you into space it’s easy for paper and pencil to get lost in the shuffle. Yet, there is nothing quite like being able to write down plans, ideas, and inspirations with your own hand. I have yet to jump on the bandwagon of all-digital organization. I still keep a pint-sized planner namely (the Quo Vadis Business Pocket Weekly Planner) in my purse. My planner does not need to boot up and load before I can write something down, I can take it out and use it at my whimsy without worrying that the batteries will die or that a virus will erase everything off of it. I use my planner everyday to keep track of my work to-do’s, my volunteer hours, and important upcoming events. I’ve used the lined pages in the back to jot own preliminary vacation plans and recipes I’ve come across. Surprisingly, I’ve even found uses for the U.S. and World maps in the back! Of course the entire notebook is littered with doodles, notes, and random math equations.

Here are my picks for other unique pocket paper PDAs (yes, I know that the acronym is technically  incorrect 🙂

I love the cover design of the Orla Kiely Small Bound Notebook and the fact that it is filled with lined, graph and blank paper! Similarly the Atomic Soda Minilabo Pocket Notebook has an adorable cover and the blank pages can be "converted" into lined or graph by using the cardboard underlay template; I also like the elastic band as it provides a little extra protection for the pages against the whirlwind that is my purse. Finally, I really like the Clairefontaine Life Unplugged Basic Staplebound Duo; these sturdy notebooks boast the motto "takes you were no laptop can go."

For those that like the added security of a flap or elastic strap you might like the small Robert Le Heros, Quo Vadis Habana and Clairefontaine Rainforest journals. I know that some people like to make sure they always have a notebook on hand (you never know when inspiration might strike!) so for those of you I would recommend taking a look at the small and pocket sized Clairefontaine notebooks we have in sets of 10.

Don’t count them out because they’re small, endless possibilities await within– no batteries needed. Do you keep a pocket notebook or planner? What do you use it for?

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