Monday, February 22, 2010

Notebook Review: Daycraft Signature Notebook

When I read about the Daycraft paper products that Gentian received from Hong Kong, I knew I had to get my hands (and pens) on these lovely things, so I wrote Daycraft and asked if they could send some samples to me, too. And they did. I'd like to thank Mr. Foreal Lee of Tai Shing Diary, because a week later, I got the samples, and look, I got a pink notebook! :)

Yes, I got a pink Daycraft Signature Notebook along with three Daycraft 2010 diaries, two of which have been lovingly adopted by fellow paper enthusiasts, the SO got the Vogue and my eldest niece got the orange Chromatic Days. I kept the Animaland diary, because it's got a blue elephant on the cover. :)

Daycraft Signature Notebook. It's PINK!

I really, really like love the soft pink faux leather (read: it's fine Italine PU, or polyurethane) cover of the Signature Notebook. The Daycraft Signature Notebook I received is sized A6, measures approximately 4 in x 6 in and has 128 pages of cream-colored 116g paper. I like that it is ruled, and the 6.5mm line spacing is just right even for my large handwriting.

The Daycraft logo is embossed on the bottom left part of the back cover. Charming, eh? The pen beside it is my brand new pink Lamy Safari with a medium nib, brought here by the 'Friendship Express' all the way from Malaysia. :)

The Notebook's page edges are painted/printed black. (The Daycraft website says it is inkjet-printed.) Makes it unique, gives it character.

Another pic of the notebook's corner, showing the black edges.

The sad thing about the Daycraft Signature Notebook is that the pages just won't lay flat. I had to press hard on the pages to make them lay flat, but I was unsuccessful and I thought I might permanently damage the notebook's spine so I let it be. After that, I tested the notebook's paper, but that, too, was a bit daunting.

This ink test page has 15 pen and ink tests, 11 of which are fountain pen + fountain pen ink combinations. As with most of my notebooks, I used my medium-nibbed pens to test the 116g paper, which I expected to be feather and bleed resistant, but no. There is excessive feathering and bleed specially when I'm using italic and medium nibs. (Click on the photos for bigger versions.)

The picture may not show it, but there is a great amount of feathering here.

The Haolilai and Airmail/Wality pens' medium nibs just bled on this paper.

But the Sarasas are just perfect! No bleed, no feathering, not even show through! *Claps.*

And the backpage reveals how most of the fountain pen inks bled, except for the Sarasas and the fine-nibbed Esterbrook SJ. This is great! This means I could still use this notebook, but I would need to use just my fine-nibbed fountain pens, or gel pens, like the Sarasas. Hurray!

The pens and inks on the upper part of the page of the Daycraft Signature Notebook are: Franken-Lamy with De Atramentis Fuschia, Lamy Safari with the same ink, Lamy Vista with Camel Scarlet Red, and Lamy Joy with Caran d'Ache Saffron. Oh, how my Lamys bled.

Now look at the bottom part of the page. No bleed, right? Because that's the part where I wrote using the Sarasas! This means I could use most of my gel pens (or fine-nibbed fountain pens) when writing on the Daycraft Signature Notebook. :) This is great because I would love to use and keep this notebook. If only the paper is a little kinder and friendly to my fountain pens...

The Daycraft Signature Notebook is another great addition to the arena of thriving notebook brands out there. I like love it and I hope that Mr. Foreal Lee, Retail and Marketing Manager of Tai Shing Diary, makers of Daycraft noteboks, will soon offer their products here in the Philippines.

Daycraft products include a vast selection of diaries, notebooks, sketchbooks and corporate planners. Their products are designed in Hong Kong and manufactured in Dongguan, China by the Tai Shing Diary Ltd.


  1. The notebook is attractive and presents well but I'd never be able to to get past the paper quality. That's the same reason I eschew Moleskines. I'm glad your reviewed this so I know now.

  2. Great review! :D

    I had similar problems with the sketchbook paper not being accepting to fountain pen ink. But it would well for micron pen, gel pen, ball point, pencil etc.

    I definitely could not get mine to lie flat either. It was easy to fold over. I would often place a heavier object lying on top of the opposing page to make it easier to work in.

  3. @TAO and @Gentian: Reading all the reviews about Daycraft Notebooks, I saw the same concern: paper quality and the binding. I pointed this out to Mr. Lee, and he assured me that they will consider these issues.

    @TAO: Thank you for reading my boring entries. :)

    @Gentian: It's such an honor for you to visit and read my blog. Thank you!

  4. Wonderful review! I agree on the paper quality.

    I have not yet had a chance to review the notebook and sketchbook that I received, but will soon.

    Check out the giveaway on my blog.

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