Muji Notebooks

Since my friend Andreas and I know that small gifts will maintain a friendship, we do tend to surprise each other with ink samples or other nice little presents when we meet up to chat about pens.

This time Andi outdid himself.

What he brought me was this tiny little Muji notebook that is unusual in every way.

Nothing fancy, but very pleasant…

It is A6 in size, so it is bigger than the standard pocket notebook, like a Field Notes or Moleskine Cahier. The design is very minimal, something that Muji is known for. No branding, no special pages for your information in the front. Side effect: you can start the notebook from both sides, it doesn’t really have a front or a back. Strange, but very cool!

The notebook  is stitched together, which I actually enjoy. The paper feels different, not too smooth, not very thick. Ruled, with an off-White color. I didn’t expect anything out of the ordinary here.

So vanilla…

Then I tried it with a variety of fountain pens.

Yes, yes, horrible handwriting…

When I turned the page, I was giggling like Ron Swanson.

I don’t know how Muji did it, but they managed to produce a remarkably fountain pen friendly pocket notebook! Nothing bleeds through this paper! Not a broad Pelikan nib, not a sharp cut broad italic.

Ghosting? Some. Bleedthrough? None.

It is hard to believe when you are sitting there with the notebook in front of you, because it is so unassuming, but the paper really is great. Now, with some inks and some nibs in combination, I have seen some minor feathering, but nothing that you wouldn’t get with other paper products, and very acceptable if you consider the following:

The A6 notebook costs 1€. You can get an A5 for 2€.

That is an amazing value. Pocket size Moleskines are three times the money and not nearly as well suited to fountain pens. Field Notes are so hard to get here that you pay even more, and they are only marginally better for fountain pens…

This is ridiculous. This cheap little no frills notebook has no business being this good. If you have a Muji store in your city, get some. Or order them online. They are so cheap that you have to order a bunch of great notebooks to offset the 5€ in shipping. What a great problem to have.

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