Posts Tagged ‘field notes’


A New Journal For A New Year


It’s the first day of the year and a great time to start a new journal. If you are uncertain about how to proceed, here is a video that might inspire you. If you are an old hand at journaling but growing bored with your usual entries, a few of Jordan’s suggestions might perk up your 2022 journal.


Or you could keep an art journal. You don’t need to be an artist to make one of these.


Both types of journals make fine creative outlets. This year I am going to keep one of each. How about you?


A Few Words On The Dearly Departed 2011


A big thank you to

  • The Pen Addict for the most referrals.
  • BT Irwin for posting the most comments.
  • Inky visitors who viewed 140,000 pages* and pushed the cumulative page views total to 400,000 last night just minutes before 2012 arrived.
  • Akismet for blocking 29,380 spam comments.
  • Ryan and James of the late Pear Tree Pen Company for contributing tons of ink samples.
  • The European Paper Company, Daycraft, and Stillman & Birn for paper to test. (The S&B review will post soon.)
  • All of you lovely Inkophile readers for continued interest in the use of fountain pens and gorgeous inks to match them.

The biggest attractions in 2011 were

See you in 2012. May the fun continue!

Pilot "Isaac Newton" Fountain Pen

Pilot "Isaac Newton" Fountain Pen

* According to WordPress the Louvre Museum has 8.5 million visitors per year. This blog was viewed about 140,000 times in 2011. If it were an exhibit at the Louvre Museum, it would take about 6 days for that many people to see it.


Moleskine and Field Notes at Maxton Men


Gifts for men can be a challenge but Maxton Men wants to help you make easy work of your holiday shopping list. Maxton Men is a men’s gifts and accessories store with a selection of Moleskine and Field Notes products among other things.

Last week the company contacted me about making a special offer to Inkophile readers. How could I refuse? This is the deal. From 12AM PST on 11/30 through 11:59 PM PST on 12/7 use the discount code INKOPHILE at Maxton Men to receive 15% off the entire site. That includes free shipping on all items with no minimum purchase.

Pretty sweet, eh?

Maxton Men


Field Notes In New Color For Summer


Field Notes has a new color that should please any lover of denim or indigo blue but it is a limited edition. So place your order soon.

Lots of ink makers have shades that would look pleasing with the new cover or you could go with the carpenter’s pencil pictured in the image. That one brought back childhood memories of blueprints spread on makeshift, sawhorse tables and new homes being built in the hazy, summer heat. I always wondered why grownups didn’t take the summer off like the rest of us. Perhaps I wasn’t a sensible child but I did recognize a chunky bit of drawing wonder in those big, fat carpenter’s pencils. Still do.


Marigolds in Your Pocket


Plant some marigolds in your pocket courtesy of Field Notes. Their latest limited release is called “Packet of Sunshine” and it is indeed sunny. Pair it with a yellow Lamy Safari or a yellow Sailor 1911 and you’ll swear summer has arrived the earliest ever!


Field Notes Journals or Moleskine Cahiers


Field Notes was kind enough to send several journals for review. Lots of fountain users rate them superior to Moleskine cahiers but seeing is believing so this provided a great opportunity to see for myself what all the fuss was about.

Field Notes Journal

Field Notes Journal

These babies come in a three-pack of graph, ruled, or plain paper or a mixed three-pack of one of each style. Each notebook has 48 pages of very white paper held together with three staples and bound in a stiff, brown paper cover. The overall dimensions are 3.5″ x 5.5″ with rounded corners. The lines match the cover color and add to the visual appeal. It’s all very utilitarian, made in the U.S.A., and costs $9.95 for a three-pack. All to the good for a stick in your pocket, take me anywhere, ready for anything journal.

Moleskine cahiers have cachet with their soft texture, cream-colored paper, and pale gray lines. Field Notes journals have a contemporary crispness with unique tan lines on bright white paper that enhances legibility. Moleskine’s plain brown binding offers nothing of interest save a pocket in the back. Field Notes has a printed form inside the front cover for details that are good for cataloguing as well as a place to offer “a handsome reward” should your journal take off on its own and need help returning. The inside back cover has a 5 inch printed ruler, details about the product, specs, and a long list of use suggestions. I especially liked the idea of using my journal for “shady transactions” or “escape routes”. Following “half-ass calculations” they suggest “crop predictions” which I read wrong the first time. Well, it is written in a rather small typeface. I decided the Field Notes people weren’t quite as cheeky as I had originally thought but still ought to be watched just in case.

Now for the pen to paper part of things. Gel pens, roller balls, pencils all work well. No surprise there.

However, Field Notes performance tops Moleskine when it comes to fountain pens. My tests were done on the grid versions of each brand. Field Notes showed minimal feathering and only enough to produce very mildly indistinct edges. Not offensive at all especially for the purpose. Moleskine showed enough feathering with most inks to be a distraction though less so with dry-writers.

Field Notes/Moleskine Cahier Comparison

Field Notes/Moleskine Cahier Comparison

Here is what I did not expect. Moleskine had no bleed-through and only occasionally the very mildest hint of show-through. As a test there is a little writing with J. Herbin Perle Noire behind the Moleskine title on the right. It is faint and unobtrusive which doesn’t matter since the feathering is beyond my tolerance level though it may be perfectly acceptable to some folks. Field Notes had modest show-through and a little bleed-through except with fine, dry-writers. So depending on pen and ink choice, even the back of a page may be useful with Field Notes.

So what does all this mean? If you use any writing instrument but a fountain pen, Field Notes will deliver a quality American made product that has tons of uses. For non-fountain pen writing Moleskine will do well, too. The slightly heavier Field Notes paper and cover may be more durable than Moleskine but that is beyond the scope of my testing.

However, if you are a fountain pen devotee, consider this: Field Notes journals have one very good writing surface while in most cases Moleskine cahiers have two disappointing ones. Thus Field Notes journals are actually useful – not just attractive. Wanna guess which one I’ll buy next time I need a thin, easy to carry journal?


Note that Office Supply Geek bought a Moleskine Volant yesterday that worked well with Noodler’s Blue Black ink in a Pelikan M215 with a fine nib. The Volant is smaller than the Field Notes journal and tiny for my purposes but you might find a use for it.

More on Field Notes at Brassing Adds Character and Spiritual Evolution of the Bean.

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