Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Review: Sugar Paper Journal

Joe and I spent a few days in Victoria, BC a week or so ago. During one of our walks about town, we walked by a shop that had this journal in the window, along with an assortment of other goods. As an aside, the shop was laid out interestingly; the goods (which ranged from greeting cards and journals to cell phone cases, tea and nail polish - a little something for everyone, I suppose) were laid out around the perimeter of the narrow shop, sorted by color in rainbow order from left to right. It was rather striking, actually.

At any rate, the journal caught my eye - and especially the note that says "Sugar Paper" below the word Journal on the label.

(click to embiggen photos)
And here I reveal my ignorance; once I got it home and opened it, I discovered that Sugar Paper is the name of the maker and has nothing to do with the content of the paper. No bagasse here, sorry to say. Sugar Paper is a company started by two graphic designers in 2003, who like to focus on letterpress work. I saw some cute things on their website - including some other notebooks, by the way.

The cover is textured heavy card stock, in black with gold polka dots; it also comes in raspberry and kraft with the gold polka dots. The paper is fairly heavy as well, and surprisingly smooth and well-behaved for a journal that isn't necessarily marketed to fountain pen people. It looks to be glued in. The journal is 6x8 inches and 75 pages, narrow ruled. Each page has a preprinted date field in the upper right corner, and the last line on each page is decorative, with an arrow motif. There is an elastic band to keep the journal closed, attached with rivets on the back; not the tidiest job I've ever seen on this one, but I think it'll hold.

Test writing here was done with a TWSBI Diamond 530 with a Pendleton stub with Diamine Monaco Red; a Visconti Homo Sapiens, XF Palladium nib, Diamine Majestic Blue; Levenger True Writer SeaGlass, F nib, with Private Reserve Midnight Blue; and a Sheaffer Balance Aspen, F nib with Sheaffer Washable Blue.

That Visconti is Joe's. Pretty sweet pen, eh? I've been trying to steal it from him since he got it. It is a very wet writer, which was my excuse for borrowing it; I wanted to see how it fared in my test writing. But I digress.

The paper has a fairly hard finish and I saw no evidence of spread or feathering at all.

As you can see, there is a bit of show-through, though not bad, and some bleedthrough with the Visconti and the Levenger, both of which are pretty wet writers. Not impossible to deal with; I've certainly seen worse.

All in all, for an impulse purchase I did pretty well. It's certainly stylish, and the paper quality is better than one often finds in things like this. I'm pretty pleased.

And just for fun, here is a shot taken out of our hotel window overlooking Victoria Harbour, with the moon and Venus in the evening sky.

Multiple mementos of a fun trip!

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