Miquelrius vs. Moleskine

First, Jim compares the Moleskine and Miquelrius pocket journals to each other at Jeremy Wagstaff's LooseWire blog:

"While I like the Moleskine's "high end" features such as the strap, pagemarker and back pocket useful, it has drawbacks. The Moleksin has less volume, therefore I use one every three months as compared to a Miquelrius every eight months, even with extensive notetaking. This means the Moleskin is less useful as a portable archive. Size does matter, but the Miqquelrius is still small enough to fit in a trouser pocket."

Ever the engineer, Steve Duncan at the RecordingThoughts weblog replies with a detailed technical comparison of the Miquelrius vs. Moleskine:

"Anyway, it’s [Miquelrius] 4.09″ x5.90″ x .77″ thick, which is a total volume of 18.58 cubic inches. It has 200 leaves, each with 2 sides (i.e. pages) for a total of 400 sides to write on, or a pretty hefty 67 square feet of writing space.

The Moleskine, (pocket size, square ruled) on the other hand, is 3.6″ x 5.6″ x .52″ thick, which is a total volume of 10.48 cubic inches. It has 96 leaves, for a total of 192 sides to write on, which is a measly 27 square feet of space.

The Miquelrius has about 3.6 square feet per cubic inch, Moleskine has 2.6. If you are someone who’s looking for the greatest amount of writing space available for the space taken up in your bag or pocket, Jeremy’s friend Jim has it on the nose."



Adios Moleskine

"So the elastic band on my Moleskine was always breaking, and I also found that the pages on the regular notebooks were too thin, and the paper on the sketchbooks too thick.

I recently converted to the Cult of Getting Things Done and needed a pocket notebook with different sections, which if you're also a member of the cult, you'll understand. So I found these Noto notebooks made by Ciak, an Italian company, which are the same approximate size as Moleskines, but with 8 sections comprised of different colored pages. It also has a soft flexible cover, which makes it better for pockets than Moleskines, whose covers are hard cardboard. The only thing I miss is the little pocket in the back."


Details Matter

"Oh, the possibilities in a blank page.

Stone Yamashita notebooks are seducing me away from the Moleskine. They’re the size of a Foreign Affairs, and have thick, creamy, tear-off pages that are lined on one side and squared on the next. The brown covers come with four provoking titles, the choice of which reveals something to you and about you. My first notebook said CH-CH-CH… on the front, and CHANGES on the back. The latest bookends DESIRE with FEAR, and I hope the sheets in between represent the middle way...

...Inside, there’s a tiny, printed inscription:

This is my notebook. A collection of my thoughts, ideas, some other people’s thoughts, some good stuff, some useless stuff. All written down, mostly scribbled, some stuff that I can no longer read, in an attempt to preserve a brilliant moment in time. (Or, at the time, I thought it was a brilliant moment.) I got this notebook from Stone Yamashita Partners. They always feed me. They’re the kind of office that allows dogs. They believe in the power of good thinking to invoke change. And so do I."


Idea Journal to the Rescue

"Last Saturday morning I woke up with a head full of ideas, yet nary a clue on how to get them out. It’s a common problem I’ve got. Sometimes it’s simply not enough to have an idea. You need to find ways to express that idea and get it somewhere where is can have a life of it’s own.

But it’s a challenge. Ideas come at the most inopportune times, don’t they? For this very reason I’ve taken to keeping my journal near by at all times, most especially when I’m sleeping."


Mr Porkpop

"An ink sketch of my youngest daughter reading. I sketched this on the same evening that I did the quick sketches of comedians that I posted the other day. I had no choice but to be quick with this one -- thank goodness she had a book that was interesting enough to keep her still for a few minutes!"

Neal Dench

Mr Porkpop

Everyman's Journal

"Designed by us because we could not find a decent journal in the market for less than a king's ransom.

The pages are a top-grade, acid-free paper that will not yellow or crumble with age. The Smyth-sewn binding (pages are stitched in place) lets the journal open flat for ease of writing and ensures that neither the years nor thousands of openings will loosen the pages.

Protected from those two great enemies of paper, fire and water, this journal will last for centuries.

With 400 pages in total, it has an index at the front and a perpetual calendar at the back. Intervening pages are numbered for easy indexing, if required. The pages are lightly ruled to guide your writing without being obtrusive - all in a cloth-backed hard cover.

The uses of the journal are limitless. It is an ideal gift to prompt someone to begin a record for the future. "

Everyman's Journal

Lee Valley Tools

Lama Li Journals

" This soft-bound travel journal has an interior pocket for pens and pencils. The wrap-around cover is held in place by an elastic band and weighted bar. Filled with 150 pages of Lama Li handmade paper in a warm natural color, it's perfect for sketching, writing, and recording impressions of your journeys. Handmade in the mountains of Nepal, Lama Li papers are made from the bark of the "Lokta" bush. As a fully renewable resource, "Lokta" regenerates new growth in just a few years, helping to preserve the eco-system of Nepal."

Lama Li Travel Journal from Nepal


[Thanks Joachim!]

Paperblanks: the joy of sniffing

"Paper used to smell glorious. When I was a kid, the smell of a new book was part of the bliss of reading. I thought the joy of that new-book smell was gone forever.

I've found it again. I've bought a couple of Paperblanks Tao Series unlined notebooks, and they smell the way paper used to! Yes! :-)

I've been a Moleskine fan, but there's no smell to Moleskines.

Paperblanks say:

"Our paperblanks combine conscientious bookmaking, elegant designs and careful handwork to produce some of the finest blank journals available. Altogether, our journals present a visual and tactile feast, and are a joy to write in."

Absolutely true. (No, I'm not being paid to say this. :-))"

Angela Booth


Hoarded Ordinaries

"There's something conscious and willful in my regression to paper, this recent return to more frequent journaling and this switch back to a paper calendar after years with a digital one. At the height of my PDA days, I had to be efficient, for I was juggling an insane teaching schedule where I taught twice a normal full-time teaching load at several different colleges topped with the demands of my dissertation-writing. At the height of my PDA days, I wrote huge chunks of my dissertation on my PDA, tapping out words on a folding, detachable keyboard in every spare second. Every spot of time in my day was spoken for and then some; I carried my schedule- and diss-laden PDA everywhere in order to maximize every last sliver of time. For me, having a PDA quickly moved from time-saver to time-enslaver, every last iota of efficiency being wrung from my hours and days.

These days, I want to live life more slowly; these days, I don't want to rush. Writing down my appointments by hand is slow and inefficient, but I'm convinced (finally) that living slowly is a good if not strictly efficient use of time. It isn't strictly efficient to handwrite a first draft and then re-type those same words...yet that's exactly what I did throughout most of my undergraduate years. Most of life's joys are, when you think of it, hugely inefficient and downright wasteful. Why stop to meditate when you could be doing something productive? Why bother spending time with friends and family when you could be working, and why prepare a home-cooked meal when you could microwave a pre-prepared one?"

Lorianne DiSabato

Hoarded Ordinaries


"I've been playing around with a small Moleskine daily planner that I picked up for half price at Borders. I like it, but there are a few issues. It doesn't seem to take to fountain pen ink as well as the Apica does. I use the Herbin inks, which are on the thin side, and I've had some bleed through. I do think I've found the perfect pen for it. I have an old Esterbrook with a very fine accounting nib. It's perfect for writing in small spaces. (I actually have two of these, identical in color, but one needs a new bladder. It has a thicker nib, so I may have to pick up another of those fine nibs for it.) My main use for the Moleskine is for quotes and whatever I feel like writing. I still put most of my system thoughts in the Apica. I may wind up getting another Moleskine though, possible a large journal size. I've been doing my morning pages in spiral notebooks and I do get tired of the scratchy paper."

Terri GTD


When in doubt how to say Moleskine...

"This is your Ciak journal.

Inside, your pen can record your important and not so important notes, your major and minor details, your useful and useless information.

Then once you are finished writing, with the elastic band you close your journal with a ...ciak!

This book is meticulously handmade in Florence, Italy by those who love quality, versatility and style.

Ciak, much more than a Journal."


This is the first time I've heard of this brand, but then again I started using Moleskine only four years ago.

Carnet de Vins

"As someone who adores notebooks of any shape or form, as someone who wants to teach herself about wine and is convinced that keeping wine tasting notes is the only way to go, you can imagine my joy at finding this darling little notebook at Lavinia, the wine super-store close to La Madeleine.

Small enough to be slipped in your purse or shirt pocket, it has a slim spiral for easier jotting, and a nice cover design for easier boasting. Each page has neat little sections for you to write the characteristics of the wine (year, appellation, producer, price), your actual tasting notes, and food pairing suggestions. (And yes, you do need to get to the point and use a teeny tiny handwriting, but hey.)..."

Clotilde Chocolate and Zucchini

How to Keep a Body Log

"If you’re new to The Skinny Daily Post, you may wonder why Journaling is rated right up there with exercising and eating as a concern for people who are working to lose weight and keep it off.

And the answer is simple: because it worked for me. Though everyone knows that writing, logging, charting are great and supportive tools in the process of managing a massive weight loss, few people do it. Or they start but stop. Something gets in the way. I live to push back and keep pushing....

...Here’s a way in: You get a notebook. My favorite is by Miquelrius. It’s plain and handsome, faux leather, and though it’s unexciting, I like it because it’s filled with graph paper. And I’m a girl who likes a graph. Find these online at thedailyplanner.com. You can get big ones and small ones. I use the big, fat ones. "

Juju skinny daily

My notebook Terry pen holder hack

" I have an original Terry that has been with me since the late seventies. Most of time it has gathered dust in my box of useful-someday-things. Of couple of days ago, in a sudden rush of inspiration, I hacked the pen clip on the back cover of my notebook..."

Mekkaniak Sanctum Mekkanicum


It's a handmade book blog, you silly!

"This is one of the books I used for a final project in Book Arts. I like experimenting with thick books. Books and paper are so amazing. A book structure can sometimes become more sculptural in nature rather than academic with pictures and words.

This book lays flat, is easy for both left handed and right handed people to write in. The headbands are manufactured. The paper is fettered down bristol vellum. There is a nice silk ribbon to mark your place.

Measures approximately 5" x 6". Perfect for your hands."

Small thick round back book for sale

Ashley Lang's new site, Handbound

[via Eric Wilcox]

Dan Eldon

"By October, Dan has been in Somalia steadily. He is one of the youngest and least experienced photographers covering the growing story, so he often has to be patient and learn techniques and protocol from more experienced journalists. The camaraderie of these veterans and the excitement of a war zone are intriguing and exhilarating for him. But eventually the toll of the famine and senselessness of the war also catch up with him. He goes to visit his girlfriend Neema in Norway. The urban, wintry atmosphere combined with the fact that he and Neema don’t get along well depresses him further. By the time he flies through London, stopping briefly to his mom (it will be the last time they see each other), he is edgy and despairing." Talk about journals and Dan Eldon's name invariably comes to mind. Killed in Somalia in 1993, Dan kept journals throughout his life. Family and friends now maintain a website in his memory.


File of Facts

"The name, originally coined from the first name "File of Facts," represents the internationally famous product which was launched in1921, as British Colonel Disney founded the company Norman & Hill, Ltd. in London. Based on the American "Organizer System" dating from World War One, Norman & Hill, Ltd. first marketed the Filofax time planner ring book. Lefax Ltd., the American-French producer of a similar product "Lefax" stemming from the "loose leaf of facts," a product designed by the American engineer J.C. Parker in 1910, would be bought out by Filofax in 1992.

The main purchaser of Filofax at first was the British army, immediately followed by the church and universities. Thereafter, journalists, judges and doctors also came to recognize the value of having all of their appointments and necessary information condensed into one folder. The folder became an essential element at the Queen's Military Academy Sandhurst. A "Troop Commannder's Bible" was produced along with several other Filofax special additions. After Grace Scurr, the secretary at Norman & Hill first abbreviated the name "Filofax," the easier pronunciation stuck and the Filofax trademark was registered in 1930."

The Filofax - A Brief History of personal Time Management


We're reprinting a series of recent comments by Journalisimo friend, Evelyn Rodriguez:

"I carry a bound journal wherever I go - I like to jot down thoughts, ideas, writing whenever the muse strikes. Sometimes it can be pages and pages at a time, so the PDA has never appealed to me; although a Tablet PC does have a certain siren call to it.

No doubt this is rare, but I lost my last journal recently in Thailand and my boyfriend lost his Palm Pilot. Yes, we were both caught up in the tsunami, but our luggage was all "safe" and sound in a hillside bungalow. (I did not take the journal because I was going on a snorkeling trip.) Our place was too far to go back to rescue it and besides we didn't have the key. Many tourists lodgings were looted, and I'm sure they could have cared less about taking my journal per se, but they just grabbed the whole daypack. In fact, I often carry my journal in a purse of some sort, so the stolen factor isn't quite one of the advantages of paper - at least for me."

Posted January 18, 2005 11:05 AM


"Good news! The journal has been found somewhere strewn about (it was not hit by tsunami, but looted in the ensuing evacuation) by the bungalow resort owners and they will mail it back to me! Note the b-friend's PDA was surprisedly (not) never found. So I take back the stolen factor comment.

This is harder to express, but something about putting hand to pen to paper also makes me viscerally connect and imprint with what I am writing in a more powerful way than I do via typing or graffiti'ing."

Posted  January 20, 2005 04:46 PM


Rhodia Drive

"Greetings from Nice, France. My name is Claudia and I would like to share with you my Journalisimo moment.

Many years back a couple of girlfriends and myself went on a cross country ride in the United States. We ended up in Las Vegas and had the best of times. In my purse was a Rhodia notebook. On a whim, I started writing down the addresses and phone numbers of all the new friends we met. On our last night I left the notebook in a bar and thought I lost it. The next morning, it was waiting for me at the concierge as we checked out. A young man (then) had apparently found my trusty Rhodia and returned it to my hotel. To my pleasant surprise, he added his own information on the last page!

As luck would have it, that gentleman has been my husband for almost 30 years now. On our wedding anniversary, I still take out my little orange Rhodia and reminisce those wonderful moments.

Félicitations on your new web site. "

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