There's something about a brand new notebook.
Like it holds secrets in those blank pages that can only be revealed once you start your journey with it. Similar to that magical moment you lock eyes with your new love - knowing that something fresh has entered your life. A clean slate that quickens the heart for a second as the cover unfolds and bares its pages. It is yours to breathe life into. Yours.
Will you make it your bestfriend and share life stories or attack it from all sides with disdainful thoughts - venting furiously after a shit day? Will you cry your notebook to life, bearing your soul and finding that well needed release? Or will it house the brilliance of your mind the art of sketches and mathematical equations?
Make Your Mark.
Don't let those pages sit alone. A notebook, journal, diary.... Any name you like to call it. Utilize this created piece or spare its loneliness and gift it to another. Maybe even a child to start their journey of creations and scribbles. Whatever you chose to do, do it now. Stay motivated and pick up that pen and start.
Stop worrying and fretting about making a mistake. That is life. We make mistakes. Cross it out and move on, or hell, decorate it and embrace it!
If I don't use at least two to three notebooks, I fail. With my brain fog from my ailments, it's necessity. It is my life now if I want to remember dates - appointments - new memories - the conversation my husband and I have that I need to remember...only to show him that I was "right" later on.
My Quest for the Perfect Journal
After I started doing the very popular Bullet Journal system I noticed how much it helped me keep track of my life and decided that I needed a Brain Book. My Brain Book is now a pocket size - go everywhere with me - journal. And I now refuse to use anything but the Vanguard by Baron Fig.
Yes, I'm one of those....a paper snob!
Why not another brand? Believe me, I have tried! I've researched and bought and tested, as you will see below in the pictures. I learned that with as much of a bond I have to have with my notebooks, it can't bleed and it has to have as minimal ghosting as possible! The last thing I want is to waste my money on is a beautifully created jornal that I can't use both sides of the paper - and I don't get along well with pencils.
I have tried and tested Moleskin, ECCOLO, MUJI, the Grid Box Book, the Dot Grid Book, a science lab notebook (this actually had nice paper but was HUGE), a Semikolon, a Rhodia, and the usual favorite of my fellow bullet journal family... the Leuchtrrum 1917. The Rhodia paper is amazing but way more of an ivory-yellow tint that I like.
Leuchttrum 1917 on top and Rhodia on the bottom.
The Semikolon is now my son's sketchbook and my daughter took the MUJI.
No feathering, smooth paper.
Other than one type of pen showing through, perfection!!
Leuchttrum paper you can almost read what I wrote and Baron Fig just has minimal shadows of ink.
The only pen that didn't win the test, on the Baron Fig paper, is a basic use and toss Pilot Varsity Fountain Pen. These pens don't have a fine tip nib though and put a lot of ink on the page. If you need that, go buy a Rhodia Pad. I'm an old skool sharpie gal myself, so not using a fountain pen is A-Okay with me. Plus I am learning to embrace colors and steadily enjoy using my STAEDLER .3s and gel pens.
The large size of the Vanguard makes a perfect rough draft notebook and has the same awesome quality paper and flexibility as my pocket Brain Book. All my posts are hand written first so I can slash through mistakes and thoroughly design the full message I want to send out in the world.
Because I'm honest - to a fault - I will say that I have a Nuuna notebook coming from across the pond. I will use that as my bullet journal, and there's no gifting that bad boy! (Yes, I'll do a review post later on that as well.) If you asked my why not a journal from Baron Fig as my BuJo, I'd gladly say... ignorance. I didn't find out about these diamonds in the rough until the day after I had ordered the Nuuna.
Wow! I sound like a groupie! And I'm not even done with the praising!!! Just three last things I have to say:
- They Plant Trees! How cool is that? How many notebook companies give back to the world the same thing they take from it?
- The Customer Service. In the wee hours of the Saturday morning that I ordered my Vanguards - I realized that no paper specs were listed on the main portion of their website. Shot a quick reply to their very nice but automatically sent Thank You email and asked about the details.
- Before 11AM, on that very same Saturday, I had a reply with a personable note and "Our paper is off-white 90gsm with a bit of tooth! - Hope that helps, Joey"
- Not only was I getting the exact information I needed, I got that info in less than 12hrs and it was the weekend! I don't expect you all to know who Joey is, but if you visit the Baron Fig website and go under the "Our Story" link you will find the team of gentlemen who started and run the business. Joey Cofone is the CEO and Co-Founder, and he is the awesome person who replied.
- Think on that for a second.... I work for a Fortune 500 company that falls in the top 10 on the list - customer service is such a crucial aspect of a business!
I was served with the perfection of Filet Mignon while I crossed my fingers that I wouldn't get McDonalds!
Now I'm hungry and can't remember what the hell the third thing is. Let's just review:
- Amazing quality paper that satisfies the need for minimal ghosting and no bleed
- Different sizes of the Vanguard (pocket, A5, and large) and another A5 hardbound available called the Confidant
- Top notch customer service
- Has planted almost 66,000 trees so far
- Oh! There's an App For That! #3 was to tell you technology junkies that there are two different apps available, one that works with the iWatch (jotting down that I need to charge mine now)
Anyway, I've blabbered long enough. Go. Now. http://www.baronfig.com
Did I happen to mention their prices are low, free shipping in the states with a $16 purchace, and they do ship internationally...
Any of the top pictures and opinions are my own. My thoughts are not commissioned and not affiliated with any of the companies listed. Just crazy about good products and rely off of reviews as everyone else does. Enjoy!