Up for review today is a Paperchase journal. This is the lined A6 (roughly 5x6.5) Flexi Notebook. I use this little guy as my daily journal. I've been using it yearly everyday since August.
Well, I went to Borders looking for an interesting journal that I could use for my everyday journaling. My Borders has a particularly large selection of Paperchase products, but not much else. I picked this one because it was on sale not because I was drawn to it.
The cover is an attractive cloth cover. There are lots of different covers and sizes available. This one is a floral pattern, but there are some with geometric shapes, polka dots, birds, etc. For those interested in something more simple, there is also a black cover and I think a couple other solid color variants.
Construction / Dimensions
As stated the journal is A6 so it's about 5 x 6.5. It is a thick little notebook at about 7/8" thick. This journal is very well made. The spine of this journal is rounded. The signatures are sown and glued. The end papers are a very sturdy cardstock in a coordinating color (navy blue for mine). The cover is flexible which might be an issue for some. It's annoying at times, but generally not too big a problem. The cover is also well attached. This journal has a very solid and tight feel to it. Now there are a few issues. The biggest issue for me is that this journal does not lay flat EVER. You have to hold it down which can be a pain in the butt. The other issue has to do with the corners. This journal's corners are at 90° angles. Thus, they are prone to getting beat up and bent up with wear. Also, since the cover is cloth, there is a strong possibility that the fabric will rip at the corners. Mine is already showing some rubbing at the corners. Now, this is not a big issue for me because my journal usually stays by my bed. But, if you carry yours around you might want to keep this in mind.
I have an email out to Paperchase for information about the weight, composition, and place of manufacture for the paper. Once I have a response I will update this review. What I can say now is that the paper is VERY fountain pen friendly. This is by far the best aspect of this journal. I haven't had any issues with feathering, bleeding, or even show through. Amazon says this is 100g paper and i can believe it. This paper is pretty thick. It easily takes every my wettest nibs with no problems at all. (The notable exception to this is ND Polar Blue, but that is to be expected. I haven't met a paper yet that can hold that one.) The paper is smooth, but not as smooth as something like Clairefontaine. My nibs perform flawlessly on this paper. No noticeable drag or tooth. This journal is lined although I did see an unlined version in a smaller size. The rule is pretty wide at 5/16 inches. The lines are a light grey. I don't normally like lines, but these are not intrusive.
Paperchase is a UK based company. They retail these journals through Borders. The retail cost is $12.99, but I was able to get this journal on sale for $6. Considering the fact that this is an imported product, this price seems pretty fair though I'd advocate getting it on sale rather than paying full price.
Conclusion (8/10, B/B+)
I really like this journal. The paper is excellent. I've run many of my inks through it without problems. Even still, I'm not sure I'll buy one of these again. The fact that the journal does not lay flat is a PIA. If you can get over that you'd probably love this journal.