I love when a notebook cover turns a simple book into a whole system, with added handiness and productivity potential. Apica makes some fantastic notebooks, and it's nice to have a cover like the CD Notebook Wear Cover that will keep them safe while adding a few useful frills.
This notebook cover says that it's made from Italian faux leather. I'm not sure how fake Italian leather is different from fake any-other-kind-of leather, but it doesn't mimic leather very well. It feels like a rubbery vinyl. And that's okay, little notebook cover. You don't have to pretend. You be you. I'm unsure whether the materials in the cover qualify it to be vegan. It is very durable, and doesn't show much wear, despite being dragged around for a few weeks. There are a few dents, but no scuffs or scratches. I personally prefer cloth or canvas covers, but this is a nice, affordable leather alternative. It's also easier to keep clean than leather or canvas, so it will likely look better longer.
The front is embossed with the Apica notebook cover design. I think it looks quite classy. Inside, it's similar to other notebook covers. An A5 notebook can slide into each sleeve, or a notebook can go in one and a notepad in the other. If you put a notepad in, you won't be able to use the back flap as a folder, though. It can also hold one larger A5 notebook. I tried a Leuchtturm 1917 hardcover in this one and it fit just fine, though the brand mixing made me twitch a little. There are two ribbon bookmarks, which is a nice touch. Inside the front cover is a business card slot, but it's large enough to hold a small stack of 3x5 cards. Possibly also large enough for a business card to slip right through, I'd think. On the back, inside cover, there's a pen loop. It's a fairly decent size, though some bigger pens may not fit. I did find that the placement of the pen loop caused it to get in the way of the notebook a little. I don't know if more use might train it to behave better or not, but it was a minor annoyance.
The notebook it comes with is a standard Apica CD A5 notebook, and it's very nice. The paper doesn't feel overly thick or coated, but it held up to everything I threw at it, including my very wet, flexy Pilot FA nib. There was no bleedthrough and almost no showthrough.
The listing for this product says it also comes with a pencil board or writing guard to place between pages, but there wasn't one in the sample I received, so I can't speak to its usefulness.
I think this cover would be excellent for meetings or class notes. The one bummer is that they're only available in navy, red, and brown. I'd love to see some fun, bright colors. I'd have loved these as a college student--they're compact enough that I could fit a day's worth of class notes into a reasonably sized bag, and have everything I'd need handy. The fact that they can hold larger notebooks as well makes them nicely practical for other uses, like journaling or writing blog posts about stationery.
(JetPens provided this product at no charge to The Pen Addict for review purposes.)
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