Ahhhh the humble notebook, a symbol of a simpler time perhaps. Thinking of notebooks and notepads might conjure up images of diaries being filling with secrets, or newspaper reporters with their mental bound pads poised to take a quote. Whatever the image, it’s not a stretch to say that the notepad is still a huge part of the stationery world, and still a staple in the office.

Many people still prefer to scribble pen to paper when brainstorming or writing to-do lists. And let’s face it, some of the greatest minds of all time were prolific notebook fans.

Charles Darwin always had a notebook to hand. His are filled with drawings, sample notes, his theories on evolution but also shopping lists and to-dos!

The notebook is still popular to this day

Queen Victoria enjoyed using a diamond-studded Faberge notebook.  Presented to her by Tsar Nicholas II and his wife Alexandra as a Christmas gift. Famous writers such as Neil Gaiman, Stephen King and JK Rowling all profess to use notebooks to plan out novels. This includes developing characters and bring together their works of art.

14th & 15th Century Notebooks

During the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, notebooks were often made by hand at home. This was done by folding pieces of paper in half into gatherings that were then bound at a later date. In 1902, J.A. Birchall of Birchalls Stationery shop decided that the awkward method of selling writing paper in folded stacks of “quires” (four sheets of paper or parchment folded to form eight leaves) was just not efficient.

Notebooks & Notepads
Notebooks – Still very popular today

He glued together with a stack of halved sheets of paper, supported by a sheet of cardboard, creating what he called the “Silver City Writing Tablet” or really the first commercialise legal pad!

As time has gone on, notepads might have started to take a backseat to the desktop, laptop and then the tablet however the choice and variety of notebooks has continued to grow. They can be standard and plain or beautifully designed. You can have Eco, vegan, fountain pen friendly, lined, dotted, the list goes on.

So, how do people use their notebooks these days? Here are some of the top ideas;

Daily to-do and planning

Gratitude Journal For Affirmations

Some of the top CEO’s have described their fastidious use of notebooks for planning out their day and focusing on what will bring them close to their goals.

Eating journal

With the invent of apps, you’d think this one would dwindle. However, lots of us still like to keep track of those calories on a little notebook!

Gratitude Journal

Something that has become more popular in recent years as a way to help our mental health.

Meeting note

Sitting in a meeting tapping away on a laptop still isn’t seen as acceptable.

Baby diary

Something for the little one to hold and read as they get older, a real piece of history personal to them.

So what do you use your notebook for? Is it colourful? Is it moleskin? Do let us know!


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