Papernotes Notebook Review and Giveaway

Papernotes notebook back pocket

Papernotes is a small Filipino company. They make just one kind of notebook (but have plans for more), which is available in a variety of colours (white, black, grey, blue, orange and red). The notebooks are A5 with 160 lined pages of paper and cost $5.50.

Papernotes notebook inside front cover

The covers aren’t firm like a Webnotebook but they are firmer than just cardboard. They have a sort of crocodile skin embossed effect on them and look pretty good.

Papernotes notebook closed

The notebooks come with all the usual extras: pen loop, card back pocket, elastic band to hold it shut and a ribbon bookmark. The pen loop will hold a slim pen, the elastic band is just right and the ribbon bookmark is very long. They’re all colour co-ordinated with the cover.

Papernotes notebook pen loop

The sheets are 100gsm wood-free paper. According to Papernotes, wood-free paper has been chemically processed to remove most of the wood components which means it lasts longer and is less likely to discolour. It isn’t very green but to be honest I don’t know how it compares to normal paper.

Papernotes notebook inside pages

What I do know, though, is that the paper is really very good. There’s pretty much no feathering or bleedthrough or ghosting. At this point, I feel I should mention the price again. This is a $5.50 notebook and it has paper that couldn’t be more friendly to fountain pens.

Papernotes notebook ink tests front

Papernotes notebook ink tests back

This Papernotes notebook does look and feel cheaper than the gold standard Rhodia Webnotebook. But it costs less than a fifth as much and it does everything it should do to a very high standard. It’s sturdy, it’s highly functional and it has fantastic paper.

Papernotes is a young company and I really hope they do well. I was sent two notebooks to review but these are absolutely my own honest opinions. They do very reasonable international shipping and I highly recommend you try one out. (You have to order through their Facebook page.)

Papernotes with packaging


I used the orange notebook from cover to cover but I have a brand new unopened white one to giveaway. All you have to do to be in with a chance of winning it is tell me, in the comments, about a little company you know about that you think deserves a mention. It doesn’t have to be pen or paper related. The closing date is 9am GMT Sunday 8 February. The winner will be picked at random using I’ll post it anywhere in the world but won’t be held liable for charges or if it gets lost.


  1. I’ve never heard of Papernotes but I shall check them out!
    Although not strictly a company, locally two young people have recently opened a cafe in the neighbouring village in a disused Waterways building. So far it’s been a great success and a popular meeting place and now they are hoping to turn around the local village pub which has been failing for a long time! I wish them all the success they deserve

  2. I’m so glad to hear that the paper is FP friendly, so many small notebooks are not. My son and daughter-in-law have a small company called Plan8Studios. It is a web development/SEO/marketing company and they are very good at what they do. Yes, I may be a little biased, but they truly are very talented. Thanks for letting me promote them here.

  3. Looks like a very good option at that price range. Here in México thers a company named Creartón, office supplies for recycling cardboard.

  4. A company I really like is Lightheaded Beds. They are great, and perfect for kids with light on the headboard! Thanks for the fun giveaway!

  5. Hmm, I think the best one I can think of is actually a game design company called Supergiantgames…. yes I know how it sounds, but a few years back they made a truly beautiful and awe-inspiring game that absolutely enchanted me. After playing it I could never forget my experience of it. The art of the game was borderline angelic and the music was made exclusively for the story. It all came together to form the most heart-wrenching story I’ve ever had the pleasure of experiencing.

    Thanks for offering this giveaway, very kind of you!

  6. My favorite little company is La Tienda, Grand Bazaar, Istanbul. They sell beatiful wood boxes covered with pieces of mother of pearls of different tones. The owners are real gentlemen and the boxes are extremely beautiful. And thank you very much for all the good information you are writiing. I really appreciate them.

  7. My favorite little company is my local car garage, the fix my 13 year old car without gouging my wallet. They wash it when its done they even inspect the little rattles that it gets without charging me. The name of these automotive care givers, Clydeside Garage (Paisley, UK).

  8. It is hard to mention one small company that please me, as… I definitely look for them, and when I found them I don’t want to change. So… car repair ? Garage Dubé. Nice service, nice price. Agenda, pens and inks ? Nota Bene, downtown Montreal. Natural soaps? BUTR. Design ? Istridia-design. Coffee place ? The one on St Zotique, corner or so of Christophe Colomb (Montreal, QC). Nice welcome, nice place to stay to study or work, and good coffee, sandwiches…

  9. Two companies that come to mind, one small and the other smallish, are Bevan’s, a chocolate maker outside Philadelphia, and Great Lakes Brewing of Cleveland (OH). Bevan’s chocolate is a favorite for holiday-giving in this area, and Great Lakes’ Edmund Fitzgerald Porter with its notes of chocolate and coffee has become nationally famous among craft brew devotees.

  10. Thanks for the review, this books looks great (particularly with fountain pens)!

    These days, I am personally very high on Baron Fig (, a small company that is making waves with their cool (Confidant and Apprentice) notebooks and their fantastic service/response to user requests.

    I am also a big fan of a local stationary and art store called Flax in San Francisco. That place is like a candy shop for me. If/when you are in SF, you should check them out (

  11. Although not a company in the business sense, I think the Air Training Corps needs a mention here due to all the fantastic opportunities that they give kids from 12-20… They do charge a subscription fee but everything else they have to raise.
    I am involved with them and have been for nearly 10 years and I have got much out of it as a member of staff than when I was one of the kids involved in it.

  12. Thanks for the giveaway! I especially loved reading the comments and learning about new companies.

    The only “small companies” I can think of are a few shops on etsy that I frequent for letterpress greeting cards. Haven’t found one that are fountain pen friendly yet, but the cards are lovely. One in particular is:

  13. Always interested to see new notebooks to try.

    As well as stationery I also have a love for great beer. One of the best local breweries to start up recently has been Almasty Brewing Co –

    Mark certainly knows how to produce great product with interesting and diverse flavours.

  14. I’m glad to see new fountain pen friendly notebooks.

    I’m not sure if it qualifies as a small company, but I feel that Mitsuwa Marketplace is worth a mention.

    Mitsuwa is chain of 9 stores across the US (7 in California). They are predominantly a Japanese grocery store, but they are also home to various small restaurants, book stores, video stores that import the related goods from Japan.

  15. A local non-profit, The Durham Scrap Exchange, takes items from people that would otherwise end up in a dumpster and resells. I have found a ton of art supplies there for a fraction of the cost it would be to buy new!

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