Back in December, I was contacted by the people who manufacture the Daycraft series of notebooks and planners to see if I would try out some of their products and review them here. At first I was a bit reluctant because they were not yet offering their products here in the US, however being that they are so popular in China, and that they do have plans for introducing these into the US soon, I figured I should check them out. I was also intrigued because the paper in this notebook is advertised as 100 gsm, putting it a shade thicker and heavier than what you would find in the 90 gsm Rhodia Web Notebooks that are always a pleasure to write in.
As you can see from the first picture, the outside cover of this Daycraft notebook is a nice shade of aqua, however what you can’t tell is that its made of a very smooth soft material that gives it a luxurious feel. Now its not leather, but it does have a similar look and feel. The cover is also flexible and doesn’t have a cardboard backing of any sort, so the notebook can bend slightly, making it easier to flip through the pages, but at the same time a little harder to write in if you don’t have something to lean against. The only branding on the cover of this notebook is on the back (I didn’t photograph it) but it is just a very small “Daycraft” stamped into the material, so it is very subtle and hardly noticeable.
Inside the Daycraft Signature Notebook, you will find some nice orange contrasting accents on the edges of the pages, the front and back inside covers, and the single face satin ribbon. Glossing over the fact that I unfortunately know a little too much about ribbon, I really like the way this color palate works out. In addition to the aqua cover and orange accents, the paper itself is a nice light ivory color, and the lines on the pages are a crisp dark gray. It is kind of hard not to compare this notebook to the Rhodia Web Notebooks because of the similar size and similar paper weights, so I’ll try and point out any similarities or differences that I have noticed. When it comes to the size of the Daycraft vs. the Rhodia, they are essentially the same size, but the Daycraft is just about 1/4″ wider across the cover. As for the paper, I have to be honest, my fingertips really couldnt tell the difference between 90 gsm and 100 gsm, but either way, the paper does feel very smooth and very sturdy to the touch. In another paper related comparison, the Daycraft paper is slightly more white than ivory when compared to the Rhodia, and the ruled lines on the Daycraft are a bit darker gray than the Rhodia.
Once I had the chance to write in the Daycraft Signature Notebook, I was impressed with the smoothness that all of the various pen and ink samples displayed. I started off with my Pelikan M215 F, with Fahrney’s Midnight Blues ink in it, I used this for the main product description that you see on the first half of the page there. I really liked how it wrote, there was no feathering and the nib moved across the page very smoothly. As I worked my way through the rest of the pens and inks, which included the Sharpie Pen, a ballpoint pen, a gel ink pen, and some other fountain pens, I was pretty impressed by the quality of the paper. None of these inks had any issues when it came to providing a smooth clean writing experience. The only issue I found was that the Levenger True Writer Fountain Pen with Levenger’s Cocoa ink did show through to the other side of the paper a little bit. I’ve always had an issue with how wet the Levenger True Writer is though, even for a supposed fine nib, it just puts down way too much ink for my liking, so I’m willing to overlook that when it comes to the performance on this paper. Every other pen that I tried left me with no show through on the other page, so I am comfortable thinking that I would certainly be able to write on the other side of the pages of this notebook with no problem.
I really like this notebook and I think that depending on the pricing, they will be a hit here in the US if they find a distributor for them. The product information kit that I was given along with these Daycraft notebooks indicates that this version would be priced slightly cheaper than the Rhodia Web Notebook (assuming my conversion to the USD was correct) unless anything changes with Daycraft once they start to import these here. Anyway, keep an eye out for these, and I’ll be doing a few more reviews of their notebooks and planners, along with a giveaway or two of them as well.