Notebook and Cover Review & Giveaway: BB7B B5 Binder

Review by Laura Cameron

A few months ago, the Desk was contacted by BB7B, a relatively new company whose mission is specializing in premium stationery and accessories. From the company website:

The name BB7B is text message shorthand for the traditional Irish language sign-off in a letter to a friend or colleague: Beir Bua agus Beannacht, which means I hope you are blessed with great success.

BB7B’s innaugural product is a B5 Binder in a dark green color (normally $45, now on sale for the holidays for $19.99).

The binder itself is hardcover, covered with dark green book cloth. It has been designed with a lay-flat spine that is rounded. The front cover is completely plain. Inside the front cover is a grey cardstock envelope approximately 3/8″ (1 cm) thick that can hold miscellaneous items up to and including a phone or small tablet.  There is a dark green elastic band that holds the grey envelope shut.


On the opposite side of the binder, there is a B5 sized notepad (6.9 x 9.8″ or 176 x 250 mm excluding the margin), perforated for ease of use, and two-hole punched and held in place by a metal band and two screws. The back cover is embossed with the BB7B logo, and has a light gray colored elastic band to hold the notebook pages in place.

Overall the B5 binder is somewhat bulky. It measures 8.7 x 10″ (220 x 270 mm) and is approximately 1″ (25 mm) thick. With the notebook in place, the full weight comes to about 1lb 1oz (~675 grams) so this isn’t going to be a lightweight EDC.

My feelings about this product are mixed. First, the binder. While advertised as “subtle, stylish, professional,” the binder doesn’t have the clean lines and luxury feel that I had hoped for. The hardcover feels like cardboard which I worry wouldn’t stand up to wear and tear, and I also wonder if the book cloth will fray over time. While I like the inner envelope quite a bit, I don’t feel like the card stock is sturdy enough that I’d want to put my iPad in there safely. I do see it being excellent for storing business cards, post-its, handouts from meetings, etc.

To me, the true hidden gem of this product is the notepad inside! The ivory paper is 100gsm and features light gray dot grid. Originally I wasn’t sure that the paper would be fountain pen quality, but it is and I REALLY enjoyed writing on it. It’s smooth and crisp, and I didn’t have any bleeding or feathering. There’s barely even any show-through on the back side! While I wasn’t entirely impressed with the quality of the binder, the paper is more than I was expecting.

Underneath the notepad there is a note that you can reorder paper from BB7B. That item isn’t available on the website so I reached out to our contact to see what the story is. They are expecting to have the notepad available on the website any day now (darn that manufacturing process!) but they also advise that any B5 size notepad will work and the gap between the holes is the same as any standard two hole punch.

Overall, I have some ideas for how the B5 binder could play into my life. It’s not going in my bag or getting transported as a part of my EDC. I suspect I’ll use it for a specific purpose like my meal planning. I think the paper will be perfect for notes, recipes, ideas, etc. and the envelope will hold all the bits and pieces of that: coupons, recipes from magazines and papers, spare recipes cards, etc.

Now, onto the GIVEAWAY.

BB7B has generously sent me B5 binders for for TWO lucky readers to try!

TO ENTER: Leave a comment below and tell me how you think you’d use your B5 binder! It makes reading through entries more interesting for me, okay? One entry per person.

If you have never entered a giveaway or commented on the site before, your comment must be manually approved by our highly-trained staff of monkeys before it will appear on the site. Our monkeys are underpaid and under-caffeinated so don’t stress if your comment does not appear right away. Give the monkeys some time.

FINE PRINT: All entries must be submitted by 10pm CST on Friday, December 13, 2019. All entries must be submitted at, not Twitter, Tumblr or Facebook, okay? Winner will be announced on Monday. Winner will be selected by random number generator from entries that played by the rules (see above). Please include your actual email address in the comment form so that I can contact you if you win. I will not save email addresses or sell them to anyone — pinky swear. If winner does not respond within 10 days, I will draw a new winner. Shipping via USPS first class/Prioirty Mail is covered. Additional shipping options or insurance will have to be paid by the winner. We are generous but we’re not made of money. US and APO/AFO only, sorry.

DISCLAIMER: The items included in this review and giveaway were provided to us free of charge by BB7B for the purpose of review. Please see the About page for more details.

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35 comments / Add your comment below

  1. I’d use it for notes during case meetings at my internship, my old padfolio is looking a bit worse for wear lately…

  2. Wow, what a great giveaway!

    Honestly, I need a good notebook this size for pen testing, random doodles, and “get rid of the concentrated ink in my feed after I haven’t used this pen in a while” ink. If that makes sense. Then – I’ll decide what to do with the next refill I buy after this one is used up!

  3. Oh! That is lovely. I’d either gift to a friend, but it would be lovely for doodling, pen testing. Perhaps something to keep and share my stationary-addled son. 😉

  4. Oh! That is lovely. I’d either gift to a friend, but it would be lovely for doodling, pen testing. Perhaps something to keep and share with my stationary-addled son. 😉

  5. Great concept for designers- I’d use it for project-specific sketches and notes, while keeping material and color swatches in the pocket. Thanks!

  6. B5 is my favorite size for portable carry, while being sizeable enough for meeting notes and sketching. I already use an assortment for mostly work, so I’d use this for art. I can see how it could be fun to insert a variety of loose leaf paper (readily available from stockists of Japanese goods) and use the envelope for art ephemera.

  7. I would use it to keep track of my 1 on 1 meetings with my team at work. It would help me keep organized while looking stylish and being able to be green.
    Great review!

  8. Hi! I’d love to win this because I speak some Irish and that bb7b thing is just so cool! I would take it to work and use it for boring meetings where if I don’t have anything to write down, I could scribble and doodle with my fountain pen…

  9. I am starting to use a cash envelope system for my finances. The envelopes would go in the pocket and the notebook would be for writing out my shopping lists and errands.

  10. I love this notebook! I would use this as my every day to do/planner book. I love the large pocket to hold mail, bills, coupons, and loose notes and my little packages of colored pens. I would make lots of lists here, doodle, do the math and get things done. When I’m done getting things done, I would be happy to close this up with the elastic so I don’t have to look at it until next time.

  11. I see this being used for special projects at work, specifically new product development. Keeping notes, handouts, reports from previous meetings in the pocket. Thanks.

  12. What a great color! I’d use it for general planning and meeting notes at work. The pocket would be great for handouts.

  13. Happy Holidays everyone! I LOVE the pocket folder at the front. I would definitely use this notebook as my EDC in my laptop bag. Love that you could put stuff in the folder and keep lots of notes and to do lists.

  14. I got my first fountain pen ever the first week in November and five others have joined my small collection since then. My oldest is checking out colleges and I decided it is time to focus on myself and build something just for me. I would love to use this BB7B giveaway to practice my cursive, test different nibs and ink, doodle, etc. while waiting for my kids doing their after school (yes, I am my kids’ uber driver). I would use the envelope to keep my blotter, fountain pen sleeve, and paper towel in case of ink splatter (which already happened a few times).

  15. After reading your review, and seeing that the binder was on offer for $20 including international shopping, I immediately ordered one. Upon seeing that it dropshipped from China I got a bit weary, but hey.

    Unfortunately, the paper in my binder absolutely is not fountain pen friendly. It bleeds and feathers like crazy, even with fine nibs. I suspect spotty QC. Just thought I should put that out there for others that read about this product. For $20, I’m OK with it being like this. Had I paid full price ($45), I would’ve been a bit sad..

    1. So sorry that the paper quality wasn’t consistent. I don’t understand how or why people make notebooks if they don’t care about paper quality.

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