Cosmo Air Light was gaining a lot of attention over the past several months as being a fresh new alternative to the premium Tomoe River paper. Naturally, I felt compelled to track down some of this paper for my own trial. Enter the Cosmo Note from Yamamoto Paper; named ‘The Best Paper’ by the 2019 SF Pen Show “Find your Fountain Pen Friendly Paper” event. I’ve had the Cosmo Note for a few months, trying off and on to use it regularly, but I just cant find room for it in my usual rotation. Let me explain.
First things first, let’s talk about the structure of the notebook. The Cosmo Note is an A5 (actual, 148x210mm) soft-cover book with 176 pages of the 83gsm paper. The covers are a thick paper stock in a smooth gray shade, which give it a clean and subtle appearance. The sewn binding is lightweight, durable, and opens flat for very comfortable use in any section. Inside, the notebook has no integrated bookmarks, pockets, or loops, and the pages are completely blank and unformatted. Structurally, the Cosmo Note is fantastic. An expertly-made notebook, all around.
The paper, oh, the paper. What to say about the paper? Well, it’s good for fountain pens; It holds ink well, shows some of the interesting characteristics of more expressive inks, and it’s very smooth and slightly tactile to write on. Sometimes though, it does something a little odd with the ink. Occasionally the ink will seem to bead up and dry inconsistently. This trait is highly irregular in occurrence, I couldn’t even confidently say it’s something you’ll even encounter.
While the paper is objectively Fountain Pen Friendly(™©®), it isn’t really a pleasure to write upon after that strong first impression. For a heavy-handed writer like myself, the paper seems to drag somewhat. I can’t quite pin down a good description of the sensation, but it’s a little like walking through low-density mud. It feels like writing on the glossy-printed page of a magazine. The surface buckles under the slightest pressure from a nib, causing it to feel less like writing and more like… carving. This results in a considerable amount of ghosting not from the ink, but from the pen strokes themselves.
Again, I write with fine nibs and a heavy hand. Your mileage may vary.
The Cosmo Note has a good structure. Yamamoto Paper made a great notebook, but this is a post about paper. The Cosmo Air Light paper stock is a unique product, to be sure, but this simply isn’t the next big thing. While it performs better with fountain pens than 80 to 90 percent of the paper products out there, I can’t see using this every day. The writing experience is so unique, even testing pens and inks in this book would not adequately represent those test subjects. I’ll be interested to see what Yamamoto Paper creates in the future, but this Cosmo Note was a one-time buy.
This Cosmo Note notebook was purchased from JetPens.Com.
Check out other products from Yamamoto Paper.
This product was purchased at retail price by The Poor Penman. All opinions stated are my own.