DesignWorks Vegan Suede Folio in Blush Pink

The DesignWorks Vegan Suede Folio in Blush Pink ($25, also available in black) is a soft, suede-like notebook cover like the Traveler’s Notebook. It ships with a lined notebook refill with 48 pages and a gold-tone ballpoint pen. From the online description and photos, this looked like an awesome alternative for someone looking for a different TN-style notebook.

The elastic on the notebook cover is the same color as the cover.

The cover fabric is soft and flexible but there is some stabilizing material between the cover material and the lining to help give the cover more stability. It feels a little sturdier than a softcover notebook cover.

The branding tag is a translucent paper wrap around the back cover. It’s easy to remove and reveal the subtle gold foil logo on the back cover.

The gold tone pen that’s included is a standard 1.0mm ballpoint pen and the refill is similar to the Cross threaded refill. It’s a little shorter than the Cross style refill in the Ferris Wheel Press Scribe. As for the gold pen, I don’t know how easy it would be to swap out the refill but as an extra for this notebook cover, its charming.

Oh, the interior fabric!!! This is really what sold me on this cover. The interior includes a secretary pocket and a gorgeous burgundy fabric printed with stylized leopards. The back cover has a long slash-style pocket as well to help collect bit of ephemera.

Inside there are two possible elastics for enclosing notebooks, similarly to the Traveler’s Notebook.  The bonus is a matching elastic loop to hold a pen along the edge of the notebook.

Testing the Notebook:

The notebook cover is an ivory, parchment cardstock cover with gold foil lettering, the paper inside is a soft white with gold lines. It has sewn binding. The line spacing is about 7mm.

While I purchased the cover specifically to use with my vast collection of A5-slim sized  notebooks that I already own, I thought I’d go ahead and test the notebook that shipped with the cover.

Most standard style pens work fine on the paper included in the notebook cahier but wider fountain pen nibs did bleed and show through to the back side of the paper. Some of the liquid inks did show through a little bit but pencil, ballpoint and gel pens seem to be good on this paper. That said, I didn’t buy this cover for the notebook insert.

Compared to Traveler’s Notebook:

Standard Traveler’s Notebook on the left, Designworks notebook cover on the right.

When I completed the testing, I pulled out one of the many Traveler’s Notebook covers that I have to compare to the Designworks cover. I noticed that the Designworks cover was ever-so-slightly smaller than the standard TN. Oh no!

The notebook insert that shipped with the cover is sandwiched in the middle with standard A5-slim above and below it to show the size difference. You can also see that the standard A5-slim insert are flush with the edges of the cover.
The insert that shipped with the cover is on the left, a standard A5-slim insert is on the right.

So, I immediately tried to put a standard A5-Slim insert into the Designworks cover. The cover is the EXACT same size as the notebook refills. Unlike the notebook included with the Designworks cover. It is about a half an inch shorter and 1/4″ smaller in width. So, the actual A5-slim notebook inserts come right to the edge of the cover.

Depending on how many inserts that are added to the cover, how close the inserts are to the edge might not bother you. I wouldn’t try to put more that four inserts into the cover as they will start to hang over the edge.

I really wish Designworks would have made this cover large enough to accommodate A5-slim notebook inserts but I love the color and the lining and the cover is very reasonably priced. So, I would definitely buy this cover again, even knowing its a bit smaller than an average “regular” Traveler’s Notebook.

On the topic of the Scribe, it matches the pink cover almost exactly if you want to coordinate your stationery.

DISCLAIMER: The items included in this review were provided free of charge by Vanness Pens Inc. for the purpose of review. Please see the About page for more details.

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