Since I was unable to obtain a replacement for my Paperblanks planner, the folks at European Paper came to my rescue and sent me a Leuchtturm1917 large hard cover planner. Its a little smaller in size at 5.75 x 8.25″ (roughly A5) than the Paperblanks (7″x9″) but it still has plenty of room to write. It includes the week-on-one-page layout on the left with a lined page on the right which is the layout I wanted.
Inside the shrink-wrapped package was a sheet of stickers to label the spine and cover of the book, a history of Leuchtturm accordion-folded pamphlet, a sheet of white paper with lines on one side and a grid on the other, a separate address booklet and a thank you note. The white paper sheet can be put under the blank pages in the back “notes” section of the planner to accommodate either preference (brilliant!).
The Leuchtturm1917 planner uses the same ivory paper stock found in their regular notebooks and includes the guesseted pocket inside the back cover as well as the vertical elastic closure and ribbon bookmark. I tend to keep the elastic on the back cover while at work since my planner mostly sits on my desk. When I bundle it up to take it home over the weekend, then I use the elastic. Inside, there is a year-at-a-glance calendars for 2013-2015, a vertical monthly calendar (with moon phases), a spreadsheet chart of holidays (both US and international), and a project-planning grid for the whole year. In the back of the planner is about 28 pages of blank pages for notes.
In the weekly planning section, the right hand page features fine, very light grey lines, quite tightly spaced which I prefer and can be used for to-do lists, meeting notes or other weekly needs. Each weekly page starts with Monday. Saturday and Sunday share a slot at the bottom of the page. Since I mostly use my planner for work, its not a big deal for me but it might be a deal breaker for some folks who work weekends or whose work week starts on Sunday.
I tested the paper with an assortment of pens. I’m a little more lenient with the paper in my planners than I am with notebooks since lighter weight paper means a smaller, more portable book which is preferable. I don’t hold hopes that my planners will not bleed through or show through if I slap down 1.1mm stub nibs with bulletproof black ink and its not what I need it to do. If my assorted gel pens and the occasional fountain pen work, I’m satisfied and that’s where the Leuchtturm delivers… and then some.
From the reverse, there’s a little show through with the black Marvy Le Pen felt-tipped pen but all the gel and ballpoints kept their inkiness on the right side of the page. Even my fountain pens kept most of their business on the business side so that I can write in my planner when I need to, with whichever writing implement is in my hand.
I’m really psyched about the little address booklet that can be tucked into the pocket inside the back cover and allow me to keep a quick selection of addresses with me and handy.
The address book has tabs dividing the alphabet and provides lines and a two-column format but there is not additional text so if an address book is not useful for you, you can use it to store passwords, web site URLs, birthdays, or anything else.
Overall, this is a solid product. While its not flashy or overly fancy, it is a classic, utilitarian, German product — clean, precise, well-built.
European Paper sells the Leuchtturm1917 planner for $17.95 and offers three different cover color options: black, lavender and taupe.