The B5 Tomoe River Notebook by Good InkPressions

I was idly browsing Etsy, as you do, when I decided to see what Tomoe River notebooks, pads et cetera were listed; it turned out to be quite a lot.

Having such a large choice is both wonderful and confusing because it’s hard to sift through the vast array of options to find what you are interested in, but sift I did and I came across Good Inkpressions and was very impressed by both the range of products and the number of options available. 

The number of options and the fact that you can combine any of them to form your perfect notebook is very impressive. I chose my options, red cover and 8mm lined, however, I didn’t want the elastic closure. I find with thinner paper like Tomoe River elastic closures can create a bump as you get near the end of the notebook; so, I decided to ask if mine could be made without a closure.

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Screen shot of colure options.
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Screen shot of ordering options.
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Screen shot explaining options.

I messaged Nuria and asked, fully expecting to be told there would be a minimum quantity required; which is a reasonable and fair stipulation when you are asking someone to vary the fundamental design of their product. 

As it turned making a one off for me was no problem; this flexible approach combined with all of the colour, paper and page design options makes these notebooks a very attractive option. 

Think about it for a moment, how many people do you know offer a bespoke service that starts with a minimum order quantity of one? It’s not going to many.

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As delivered, carefully packed.

Moving on. 

The construction of the notebook is very interesting. 

At first glance what you have is a very nice notebook with rounded corners and very discreetly embossed in upper centre of the front cover is “Good Inkpressions, Letterpress, Handmade Stationery” and that’s it for external branding, however, this is repeated on the inner cover.

When you open the front cover it falls flat and you’ll see it is not attached to the spine  and because of this you can see how Good Inkpressions make their notebooks; it starts life as a notebook with a very nice dove grey cover and then they add the coloured cover of your choice which is bonded to the rear cover of the notebook but not the front cover, and there is a good reason for this, by making it this way the front cover lies flat lies flat and does not exert any pull on the actual notebook.

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Outer & inner front covers.
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The covers & the corner.


This technique allows the actual notebook to lie nearly flat when it is open, no small achievement for a stapled notebook. I tested this by opening the notebook at various points and each time the notebook lay as flat as many of my stitched notebooks; meaning you get to use nearly all of the width of the page, which is all any of us really want from a notebook.

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Staple binding.
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Opened at centre, the notebook lays nearly flat in use.

The paper is exactly as you would expect 68gsm Tomoe River to be; I chose 8mm lined and the lines themselves are printed in a pale grey and are not intrusive when the notebook is in use. I tested the paper with a wet pen and Diamine Oxford Blue and there is no ghosting or bleed through at all.

Do I think a Good Inkpressions notebook is worth your pennies, without a doubt. 

I am happy to recommend both Good Inkpressions and their notebooks, the customer service is simply brilliant, and I can say this with complete certainty because after receiving my first notebook I asked Nuria if it was possible to order two more for delivery in a hurry. 

To my surprize Nuria posted them and then told me they were on the way, not many people would show that much faith in someone they don’t know.

If you are thinking of ordering some notebooks then I would urge you to check out their range and treat yourself to a bespoke notebook.

Disclaimer: The notebook was purchased with my own funds at retail price. The opinions expressed in this review are my own; and I am not connected with either the retailers or manufacturers in any way.

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