This is one from the vaults - I unearthed these notebooks last night while looking for something else (ain't that always the way?) and was so excited to have re-discovered them I've been up half the night writing this post.
Why so excited you may ask - well, these are homemade notebooks, crafted by this pen-thusiast's own fair hands, and I'd completely forgotten I had them. I made them around five years ago, if memory serves, and they've been languishing in a box since I moved house shortly afterwards. The paper seems to have survived well and is still in good order, so no problems on the archival quality front then; the covers seem to have responded favourably to storage as well.
Originally inspired by a notebook I received as a gift, my notebooks are made from the EcoPaper brand's Coffee Paper and cardstock. I seem to remember this being difficult to obtain in the UK at the time, to the point that the paper had to come direct from EcoPaper's then UK distributor (who's name escapes me).
I was only able to get my hands on one ream of the A4 Coffee Paper, so to eke out my supply I settled on making the notebooks to A5 size (approx 8" x 6"). Each notebook contains 100 pages (50 sheets) of Coffee Paper (which feels somewhere between 80 - 90gsm to me), wire-bound with Coffee paper cardstock covers, though I did experiment a little and covered one of them in faux black leather fabric.
The paper itself is fairly weighty and, whilst smooth enough to be laser and inkjet printer compatible, has enough of a tooth to make writing pleasurable with a variety of pens, including the Platinum Preppy 0.3 that I am currently road-testing. It also features a lighter and darker side, presumably due to the manufacturing process - just flip the notebook over to lead with either the lighter or darker pages as your preference dictates.
What really impresses me about the EcoPaper brand is their paper (which also comes in banana, cigar, mango, lemon and hemp varieties) and paper-related products are made using a combination of agricultural by-products and post consumer recycled content to give a quality product that is not only very distinctive, but which is eco-friendly as well. EcoPaper's manufacturing process is also chlorine-free and a percentage of each sale goes towards supporting an orphanage in San Jose, Costa Rica. What could be better?
At a Glance:
Available from: EcoPaper in the US; anybody's guess in the UK!
Overall rating: paper 5 out of 5; homemade notebooks - you tell me?!