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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