Forum

  • If you are new to these Forums, please take a moment to register using the fields above.
Announcement Announcement Module
Collapse
No announcement yet.
what's the big deal re: Moleskine? Page Title Module
Move Remove Collapse
X
Conversation Detail Module
Collapse
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • what's the big deal re: Moleskine?

    Hi all,

    Could someone please tell me why everyone seems to be so fired up about using Moleskine notebooks? I've not seen one in person, but it looks like it's just a plain old notebook to me. Please, tell me - what's the big deal?

    ~b

  • #2
    Moleskine: More than a notebook

    Here's why the Moleskine rocks:
    - It lays flat when open.
    - It has a pocket built in.
    - It has a bookmark built in.
    - It has a elastic strap to keep it clsed built in.
    - It is strudy.
    - It is portable.
    - It comes in MANY shapes, sizes and types.

    Lookie here for more details: http://www.moleskinenotebook.com/

    Basically after years of using rubberbands and bookmarks and post-its and whatnot to 'enhance' normal notebooks i discovered the Moleskine. It is a stand-alond swiss-army notebook.

    Comment


    • #3
      "Creative mode" catalyst.

      Legend, touch of a class, great usability, ability to switch you into "creative mode" and high price.

      Comment


      • #4
        See also...

        See also http://www.diyplanner.com/node/370.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by mOses nOghbaudie
          Here's why the Moleskine rocks:
          - It lays flat when open.
          - It has a pocket built in.
          - It has a bookmark built in.
          - It has a elastic strap to keep it clsed built in.
          - It is strudy.
          - It is portable.
          - It comes in MANY shapes, sizes and types.
          Good features, all, Moses, but in my opinion, blythe, there is nothing inherent in the Moleskine which warrants its legion and legendary lust factor. It's kind of like the Dr. Bonner of notepads -- Dr. Bonner is soap and it is just soap, but it is hugely popular soap because something about the crazy little sentences combined with the squeeze bottle (when it was gaining popularity, liquid soap was still a domestic rarity) have made it a fringe-culture icon that is actually mass culture. The marketing clicked.

          Now I have no idea what the 'F' type of notepads Hemingway or anyone else actually wrote on, or whether or not their loyalty to said notepad was on the order of the worshipful stance taken by present-day Moleskiners. Or even whether it should matter to anyone. That's moot. But the packaging and marketing of the notebooks -- coupled with its adequate but not supernatural features, have found a solid niche.

          Probably has something to do with the fact that its very retro design is itself a counterpoint statement to the technological input devices that are shunned by many of the hipster-pda-ish ilk and intellegentsia who gravitate toward the product.

          That said, the company's vertical offerings meet varied needs -- if you do "go Moleskine" you are greeted with enough options in size and content to "stay Moleskine" and you needn't make a decision the next time you go to the stationers about which brand to buy.

          Personally, in choosing a notepad, I am seduced primarily by the paper, not the container. For a long time I favored Rhodia pads, which has its own cult of followers and is favored by artists and by writers who prefer to sketch and outline their notes. Pop a Rhodia in your shirt pocket and the distinctive burnt-orange cover flap will, I can almost guarantee, lead to a conversation in a coffee shop or subway station. People who use Rhodia feel themselves, like Moleskiners (even moreso, I think, because it is a smaller bunch), to be part of a select cult of afficianados. For better or worse, Rhodias are distinguished also by perforated paper and graph-grid lines, both of which I found limiting.

          I have now settled on Clairefontaine which I was told by a stationer is somehow related to Rhodia -- same company, or something. I do not know for sure. In any case, Clairefontaines are spiral bound (which I prefer -- lays flat) and unperforated (I like the permanence) and the size options are excellently varied. The paper is superb -- pencil, pen, marker -- even cheap pens -- glide along the surface with smudgeless clarity.

          Anyone who comes to rely on noetpads ultimately, I think, wishes to become loyal to a brand in the interests of being able to create an aesthetically clean and symmetrical archive as each successive pad gets filled and retired. In that regard, Moleskine is as good an option as any.

          Comment


          • #6
            Just a Good Notebook

            Originally posted by blythe
            Could someone please tell me why everyone seems to be so fired up about using Moleskine notebooks? I've not seen one in person, but it looks like it's just a plain old notebook to me. Please, tell me - what's the big deal?
            Yep, it's just a plain old notebook. A really, really good plain old notebook.

            I use them because they are well-made, and like other good tools (such as my favorite pen or my Zaurus) they help motivate me to get things done. But I use them in spite of all the marketing hype, not because of it. I find most of the manufacturer's blather about "the legendary notebook of Hemmingway" kind of annoying.

            Besides, if Hemmingway and Matisse really did use the notebook they've been manufacturing only since the mid-1990s, they could make more money from their time-travel technology than their sales of stationery.

            -T.

            Comment


            • #7
              Hi all,

              Thanks for your replies. Must look into this issue in person, I think.

              An aside: Every time I look around this forum, I find something else that I need to go and find out about.

              This time it's ZAURUS.

              Cheers,
              ~b

              Comment


              • #8
                There is a mystique about them that is largely touted by the "converts" but the paper is acid-free, holds ink really well and is great to write on. Buy one and write a bit in it, then wirtie in the other notebook you're using now and I think you'll notice a difference. Yes the size, the elastic band and inner pocket (etc.) are all nice but until you write in it, it *is* just another notebook.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I bought the hype. And I bought a moleskin. And I wasted good cash. I brought it home and did everything I could...smelled it, ran my hands across it...ANYTHING...to lower my cognitive dissonance surrounding the purchase. 5 days later when rational thought returned, I thought: "Dear Lord, I just dropped $27 on a small note book".

                  As my marketing profs parroted time and again: "People like to think they're smarter than they really are. It takes a lot of effort to make rational over emotional purchases".

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Overpaid?

                    Originally posted by avrum68
                    ...I just dropped $27 on a small note book...
                    The list price for them are $10 - $16. Is that US dollars or Canadian?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Moleskine? Clairefontaine?

                      Gosh, and I thought Clairefontaines were expensive -- before wallowing in all these Moleskine posts and threads and sites, that is.

                      A couple of dozen times, attracted (make that seduced) by the Moleskine folks, I've gathered up my resolve to buy and try a Moleskine, and chickened out every time because of the price.

                      After that immunizing experience, Clairefontaines don't seem costly at all. In fact, they seem downright cheap. Except that they're not cheaply made: wonderful paper that takes ink or pencil equally well, an abundance of sizes, choice of spiral or bound, and the list of attractive qualities goes on. (I must confess to a mild distaste for the checkerboard covers, but the writing qualities outweigh that drawback.)

                      They don't have a bookmark, back pocket, or enclosed pedigree. But they do cost considerably less per page than Moleskines, and they are said to be standard issue for schoolchildren in France (any Francophiles or -phones here who can verify that?).

                      The more I use my Clairefontaines the more I love them.

                      But that doesn't mean I won't succumb to the Moleskine one day, if only out of insatiable curiosity, like the Elephant's Child.....

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Moleskine & Clairefontaine

                        I'm a Director of Communications with a staff of writers, so I figure I get to be a little nutty about my writing implements. I keep a collection of fountain pens in my desk, and one or two in my briefcase. I write in interesting inks, and I insist on good paper. I'm trying out a small 3x5 Moleskine as my "coat pocket" book, and I like it reasonably well but don't love it. The Clairefontaines are indeed fantastic, the paper is actually quite a lot nicer than Moleskine's, especially for fountain pens.

                        I'm very interested in Rhodia, though. Next notebook I'm going to try one out.

                        There's a nice selection of Clairefontaine at www.pendemonium.com. (I don't work for them or have any connection, but they are lovely folks and they have a good selection of pens & inks at reasonable prices.)

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I wasted some money, too...

                          I got the two page per week planner, A5 (8.5x5.5), and I really didn't like it.

                          If I'm going to have the daily columns down the page spread, I want seven days, since I often have weekend appointments and need the note-taking space (which is in short supply in the mole).

                          It doesn't have little monthly calendars on the page, the ink is so faint that I can hardly see the hours (even tho I like fairly faint print this was too faint), the hour numbers were too small (you'd need to tuck a little magnifying glass into the pocket to read them)--I like the concept of the subtle lines and hours, but they just were too subtle for me--and it didn't lie flat, even after I bent it around and broke the spine, etc--really abused the thing.

                          I don't like the fiddly ribbon page marker or the rubber band. I like to whip my daytimer out fast and these things would just slow me down. I'd rather have the pages with corners you can tear off. And there's no pen holder--tho some clever people have made their own.

                          Their coded holidays at the top of the page would drive me crazy--I'd be trying to figure what holiday it is in what country--don't need any more distraction.

                          There are no day numbers and no week numbers.

                          For a planner the paper doesn't have to be that fancy. And anyway, if you want to write, you can write on napkins or legal pads or whatever--the paper doesn't make you a writer. Of course, the mole does make the experience nicer for people, if that makes a difference to them, and if they keep it up as a journal for their kids, I can see getting something that will last.

                          There were other things I didn't like, but anyway I ended up disassembling it and taking the envelope out (now I know how it was made I could make my own!--it's just a sheet of paper folded in thirds with some tape holding the sides together so things won't fall out) and putting that into another planner.

                          At least I saw for myself, so maybe it wasn't all wasted money. An annoying open loop that is now closed and buried.

                          (Sorry for being so grouchy about it.)
                          Last edited by ggrozier; 12-05-2005, 08:05 PM.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Good post, Sonia. I was attempting to explain to my new employer today the appeal of pen and paper and she got it instantly. As I think more and more people will. Rhodia's a different kind of animal -- paper's not as good, but the minimalist design, the perforated pages have their fans.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Take it easy.

                              Originally posted by ggrozier
                              I don't like the fiddly ribbon page marker or the rubber band. I like to whip my daytimer out fast and these things would just slow me down.
                              Apparently the Moleskines are not for you. They are for people that do not have to hurry so much.

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X