The first thing I should say is that this notebook cover was given to me by Laura at Esplanade London, following a recent review of her double pen sleeve, with no expectation other than I should use it and enjoy it. In return for her kindness I am writing this review.
The cover is made from Harris Tweed which for anyone not aware of this wonderful material; it is amazingly tough and hard wearing, it comes in a phenomenal range of colours and patterns and its production is governed by an Act of Parliament which all adds up to a particularly cool piece of cloth.
Esplanade London produce a wide range of goods using Harris tweed and a fair number of them are squarely aimed at stationery addicts like myself who are looking for something different. When you order from Laura you get to choose from approximately 72 colours and patterns which should mean that you can find something for all occasions.
I did. I got to choose and I opted for a marmalade orange; well we are The Indian Marmalade Company so any other colour just wouldn’t have been right.
The cover arrived wrapped in a plain craft paper envelope formed from a single sheet of paper; I like this idea as internal packaging it is quite minimalist, and you can either reuse it or recycle it.
Once open the cover is revealed folded down as you would expect to see it in everyday life and as you can see it is held shut by a horizontal elastic using the same positioning as that found in some of the ‘Traveller’ style notebooks. The next thing to do is to open it up and when you do it reveals a burgundy red internal lining, a velvet ribbon for place marking, a discrete pen/pencil loop and two pockets to insert your notebooks front and rear covers into.
I decide to test the cover with one of my Fabriano A5 Ecoqua notebook; the nice thing about this notebook it is a very standard sized softback notebook and as it turned out it is a perfect fit for the cover.
In fact, the fit is so good that the cover doesn’t require the elastic to keep it shut; having discovered this I then moved on to see what else I could slip into the ‘pockets’ without disrupting the cover too much. It turned out that an A6 notebook was no problem at all.
The thing about notebooks is that they don’t all have a pocket inside the rear cover, and this can be a bit of a pain when you are trying to find somewhere stash train tickets, receipts, notes on scraps of paper etc. This is where these ‘pockets’ come into their own, fill them with your scraps of paper and wrap the elastic around the notebook and all those essential notes should be safe until you need them.
Lastly is the question of cost Esplanade London covers start around £39 GBP which is quite a chunk of change to put down on a notebook cover. However, before thinking “that’s expensive” you have to take a few things into account.
- Harris Tweed is a material that will last a lifetime.
- These covers are made to a very high standard.
- You get to choose from around 72 different tweeds.
All of this is supported by excellent customer service so for instance if you want something different you only have to ask e.g. when I ordered my pen sleeve I asked for a custom size and it was no problem and there was no additional cost.
So, when you look at this as a package of very good options, I don’t think they are expensive, in fact I think they are very reasonable because unlike most covers you buy that last for a year or two at best Harris Tweed is with you for the long haul.
On top of this they make very nice gifts and because you can make customisation requests you get to give a gift that is unique; and we all like to have something that nobody else has.
So, in short, taking everything into account I think these covers are well worth your pennies.
Disclaimer: This cover was given to me at no charge and with no expectation other than I should use it and enjoy it. The opinions expressed in this review are my own; and I am not connected with either the retailers or manufacturers in any way.The Indi