A dingbat is a typographical symbol or ornament, such as an asterisk or a pilcrow (¶).
Dingbats* is a stationery brand creating “eco-friendly notebooks with personality.”
I am an impulsive enthusiast, let’s talk paper.
The Dingbats* Wildlife series notebooks feature a generic, unformatted layout. A blank (or dot grid in this case) slate ready to catch your ideas, sketches, notes, or whatever you deem necessary to write down. These A5+ journals cover the premium features; 100gsm fountain pen friendly paper, a thick PU leather lay-flat cover, perforated pages, and built-in page marker, elastic pen loop, and closure band. This series is available in 5mm dot grid, 5mm square, 7mm lined, or blank ruling, with 192 pages (or 96 sheets) of perforated cream-colored paper. The Wildlife Series is also available in A6, A4+, and A6+ reporter (top bound) sizes. The notebooks are finished with a nice textured faux leather feel, an assortment of colors, and embossed with an animal silhouette adorning the cover. The inside of the book is accented with an animal pawprint liner and little else, leaving your focus to fall on the clean empty page.
Dingbats* claim that their paper is fountain pen friendly, and I can absolutely confirm that. The paper is smooth, with minimal texture under hand. It holds ink well and feels comfortable with every nib width I’ve tried, and is also very solid under standard gel, rollerball, and ballpoint pens. Now this isn’t on the level of a TR-style fountain pen paper, but it shows off the colors of your ink very well. Inks that shade and sheen get their chance to shine in this …shnotebook. No feathering, and minimal show-through; this is very good paper.
The so-called A5+ size (6.5 x 8.5 in) is pretty common in the marketplace of journals and premium notebooks. Unfortunately that ‘plus’ means that the Dingbats* notebook wont fit into popular A5-size cases or pouches. Not to worry, however. The faux-leather finish and subtle embossing give the notebook a clean look. The texture is comfortable to carry around, though it did not take me long to ding and mark the cover a bit.
Of course my favorite feature of the Dingbats* notebook isn’t the attractive cover, the premium paper, or the built-in extras. My favorite thing about this notebook is the way it’s made. They explain in more detail on their website but to sum it up, the Dingbats* brand strives to minimize the environmental impact of their notebooks from start to finish. From replacing the trees harvested for paper, to using water-based adhesives in the binding.
Overall, I like the Dingbats* notebook. It’s superior build quality is worth the sticker price, and it’s always nice to see a company take some extra consideration when it comes to the impact of their business. One think I would like to see, aside from a notebook with an Owl theme (because I give a hoot) would be the next logical step of eco-friendly notebooks; a craft cover edition. The vegan leather is “engineered to be degradable” which is great, but when this thing is full and used-up, it’s still going in the bin. If there is one wish I could make to the Dingbats* brand, it would be to take the next logical step in sustainability and offer a craft-cover ‘lite’ version of the same notebook. I’d have that on my short list when the time comes to replenish. The paper is great, and the price is fair.
Check out Dingbats* Notebooks here.
Read more about Dingbats* sustainability efforts here.
Disclaimer: This product was purchased at retail price for the purpose of use and review. All opinions stated are those of the author.
One thought on “Dingbats* Wildlife Notebook Review”
Hear hear – I second your call on the cover! Otherwise beautiful and thoughtful product. Any time I see their use of the word ‘vegan’ in relation to material, I think ‘plastic’. Long may it degrade. Will wait in hope for the craft version – good one!
Fab review generally. Now I’m the awkward position of wanting one even more than I did before, but being determined to find one with a more sustainable cover. D’oh!