Clairefontaine Basic Cloth Bound Notebook

Bullet Journal Notebook Review


Key Features:

  • Key Features: You can’t go wrong with any notebook that has Clairefontaine paper.
  • Size:  8.25″ X 6″  |  210mm x 148mm
  • Cover: soft  |  heavyweight textured cardstock
  • Binding: glued binding
  • Pages: 192
  • Page styles available:  dotted  |  lined  |  squared (see description below)
  • Paper Quality: 90gsm
  • Ghosting?  Minimal ghosting
  • Bleeding?  No bleeding
  • Feathering? No feathering

My Review:

As I was rounding up my journal review and started talking about the progress I was making to other stationery enthusiasts, people kept asking me if I’d tested Clairefontaine paper. I hadn’t. But by this time I’d already settled on the journal I was going to use and I didn’t “need” to buy any more notebooks. (Right! Like that’d ever be a true statement.) So, of course, I bought this notebook to test out. It was the cheapest option I could find on Amazon and I bought it only because you all asked me to.

Wow! I was pretty impressed when I got this notebook in the mail. Looking at it, it’s very unassuming. The cover is a heavyweight cardstock, but definitely, note heavy or substantial. The lines on the paper are set a little wider than I prefer, but overall, the inside wasn’t anything spectacular either. In fact, even the binding – glued paperback book binding style – wasn’t even all that great. But you guys…. The paper!  No really, this paper is pretty awesome! It’s smooth. But not just smooth, it’s literally soft. You want to run your hand over the paper and pet it because it’s so soft. And writing on it is a dream! And the ghosting here is minimal, so with the right pen, you wouldn’t see anything at all (impressive for a 90gsm paper). There’s a coating on this paper, so the ink sorta sits on top of the page rather than soaking into the paper.

Let’s talk a moment about the binding. It’s glued. In fact, I think this is the only notebook in the entire lineup here with a glued binding. It’s not something I would normally choose because you can’t really open up a glue-bound book fully and have it lay flat. And often if you break that binding the pages start to fall out.  So I put this little notebook through the wringer to see how secure this glue binding really was. In several spots throughout the book, I bent the whole thing in half backward to open up the binding and see how far I had to take it before it’d break and fall apart. Mmm… it didn’t break. Then where I bent that binding I could lay the notebook open and it’d stay open on its own, lying flat. I’m impressed! This cheap little notebook (around $8) might just turn out to be the best bargain in the bunch for durability, paper quality and joy of writing).

Buy on Amazon

Other Clairefontaine Journals

Above I make a note that this notebook is available in dotted, lined and squared.  Here are some links for you to find those other variations.