Ink+ Volt collaborated with Japanese stationery brand Kunisawa to create the new Founders Notebook ($33).
The Founders Notebook is a classic A5 size with a manageable 112 pages. The covers are a flexible soft cover with subtle shimmery patterns that look cool and professional. The Founders Notebook is available in three different cover options. When I was told one option was “camo” (it’s actually astro camo) I was skeptical but when it arrived and I discovered it was this amazing shimmery metallic that looks more like space-age terrazzo than military camo, my opinion changed dramatically. The deep “galaxy blue” is, well for lack of a more poetic description, flippin’ gorgeous. It has an iridescent glow to it that is subtle but eye catching. And the shade is edging towards that Ingres Blue that makes me weak. And then there’s the “starlight opal” which has a subtle horizontal patterning and a slight lavender quality to the silver sheen. Honestly, just from the cover colors, you wouldn’t go wrong with any of them.
Close-up of Astro Camo
Close-up of Galaxy Blue
Close-Up of Starlight Opal
The Founder’s notebook has gilt edges which are fancy-schmancy. While gilding the edges does not enhance performance or stability, it does make the book look pretty dang classy. Depending on the notebook cover color, the gilding color varies. The gunmetal astro camo has a golden edging, the galaxy blue cover has silver edging and the starlight opal has a pale gold edging. The only branding on each book is matching foil stamped logos and “The Founders Notebook” centered at the bottom of the back cover which is elegant and subtle. The paper wrap is, of course, removable.
The interior paper is a soft white, smooth paper that is fountain pen-friendly but still works well with all your other favorite tools too. The paper are lined on the right and blank on the left. The lines on the right are 7mm spacing but they are so light they are almost invisible. There is also a rule on the far left creating a box that can be used as a check box or to number the column or whatever suits your method of note taking. The blank left page can be used for doodling, diagrams or freeform content. My contact at Ink + Volt says the paper is
about 70lb 81gsm and that sounds about right. It’s translucent enough to slide guide sheets underneath if you would prefer more structure or if you like graph or tighter ruling.
In writing tests the paper did, indeed, work well with fountain pens, pencils and a variety of other ink pens. I was even able to do a large doodle on the blank page with very little show through. There were just a few dots of bleedthrough where I was dotting color with my brush pens.
The starlight opal notebook has smoke blue end papers (the astro camo has lavender and the blue galaxy has black).
While the Ink + Volt Founders Notebooks are a little pricier than most notebooks, the covers are unusual and the gilded edges give them an upgraded look too. The covers are not leather but feel premium so that a plus for some consumers and a minus for others. There is
no ribbon bookmark (Ah ha! There was a ribbon bookmark but it was tucked so snugly into the center of the book that I didn’t see it until it was pointed out to me. The ribbon bookmark is long enough to pass the “Can I open the book with the ribbon test?” but does not, however, have sealed end.) pocket in the back cover or elastic closure. Again, for some, those are not things they will miss and for others it will be a disappointment. For me, I think these are a beautiful addition to the notebook market. I have plenty of bookmarks I can use and I can buy a pocket sticker or make one if I find myself missing it, and I honestly never use built-in elastics on my notebooks. THE GIVEAWAY: Ink + Volt has kindly donated THREE Founder’s Notebooks to giveaway to the readers of The Well-Appointed Desk. Three winners will be drawn at random and will receive ONE Ink + Volt Founder’s Notebook of their choice. TO ENTER: Leave a comment below and tell me which color Ink + Volt Founder’s Notebook you’d like. Play along and type in something. 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 Sunday, May 10, 2020. All entries must be submitted at wellappointeddesk.com, 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 7 days, I will draw a new giveaway winner. Shipping via USPS first class 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.
Finally, apologies for the delay in getting this post up today. One of my cats was feeling particularly needy today. Working from home has its good points and its bad. Kitty cuddles are great… until you need to get work done.