Tag Archives: Levenger

Review: Levenger Circa Sliver Inside Out Notebook

As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I love the thin and light style of the Levenger Circa Sliver notebooks. They provide a sleek professional look to your Circa that doesn’t take up valuable disc space or add precious weight and bulk to your notebook. But while I love my Cocoa-colored Sliver cover with pockets, I was jonesing for some brighter colors. So when Levenger came out with the new Sliver Inside Out covers, I had to try one!! I was so impatient I even bought it from Amazon so I could have it in two days (thank you Amazon Prime!!!).

I also needed some new Circa zippered pouches, so jumped on a pack of those too. They arrived without the usual fancy Levenger packaging, just in a sealed plastic envelopes.

wpid-img_20150613_184600.jpg

First impression? This blue is WAY prettier than I thought it would be in person!

wpid-img_20150613_184658.jpg

The back cover.

wpid-img_20150613_184838.jpg

The Inside Out Sliver Notebook is called such because it is intended to be reversible – you can use either the colored side, or the black textured side. As a result, there is no Levenger embossing or other marks that would ordinarily denote one side over the other.

The blue side has a faint texture and pretty robin’s egg blue color – not just blue, a little greenish/turquoise tint to it.

wpid-img_20150613_184941.jpg

wpid-img_20150613_185115.jpg

The black side has a more obvious texture pattern – I personally don’t like it as much as the colored side, so won’t be reversing it very often I don’t think.

wpid-img_20150613_185021.jpg

The Circa Sliver Inside Out Notebook comes with standard black plastic 3/4″ discs and Levenger’s Annotated Ruled refills. Although it doesn’t have pockets, or an elastic band closure, or a pen loop, it does have the same slim and trim style I love. Here it is compared to the Sliver Cover with Pockets version with 1/2″ discs.

wpid-20150613_192028.png

Showing that both Sliver covers have the same thickness.

wpid-img_20150613_191803.jpg

wpid-img_20150613_191852.jpg

I like this blue color so much now, I might need to snag a purple when it gets discontinued. I really think these new slimline covers are a unique and highly desirable line of notebooks – I really hope they come out in some fun BRIGHT colors (WITH POCKETS and elastic loop Levenger, PLEASE!??) – like orange, or fuschia, or lime green. Something bright and fun to go with the Vivacious tab dividers and file folders. What do you say Levenger?

My Work Circa Revisited

Back in December I posted about my Levenger Circa notebook I used for work. It’s been a few months, and I thought I’d post an update about what I’m still using.

First of all, for the past couple of months I’ve been in love with my Circa Smooth Sliver Cover. It’s professional looking, sleek and slim, and has pockets and a pen loop (which = awesome). But, like is inevitable for me, every once in awhile I have the urge for more color. So just today switched back to my clear plastic cover and decided I still really liked the colors in my custom coversheet I posted about previously. Look how well it matches my Lamy Al-Star fountain pens!

wpid-img_20150423_161919.jpg

I have switched out the discs to my now discontinued 3/4″ Plum Aluminum Discs, preferring the darker purple to the Caribbean purple of my last post.

wpid-img_20150423_130643.jpg

The back cover is just an old Levenger Circa beige cover I kept around.

wpid-20150423_162702-1.png

A big change I’ve made since my last update is to get rid of my tab dividers. As it turns out, I just didn’t use them very often. I still have sections, but now I get to them via page finders.

My first section consists of my monthly calendars. Last time I posted I was using a printable I’d found on Etsy, but since then I’ve released the Pretty Pretty Planner in letter size and am in love with it.

wpid-20150423_162855.png

wpid-20150423_162941.png

I’m using these adhesive Girl of All Work tabs for each month – they complement my Pretty Pretty Planner colors really well.

wpid-img_20150423_162017.jpg

After my monthly pages are the weekly “Business Week – M-F” letter-size pages, which works really well for my work needs, where I need to track project time by the hour. I use a Circa page finder to mark my current week, and then as every week passes, just move the page around to the other side of the page finder, rather than move the page finder each time.

wpid-20150423_163040.png

After the weekly pages I keep a year-on-two-pages calendar I developed (also available for download under the DIY Templates page).

wpid-20150423_163203.png

Instead of a tab divider, I move on to my blank pages I use for my daily work notes/brain dump/project log. I use a Levenger Circa Top Tab page finder with post-it sticky notes as my page finder for this section (I explain how I made it here).

wpid-20150423_163250.png

I just date each day’s new notes on both sides of the page chronologically, moving the page around my page finder each day as it fills up. By using page finders, I really don’t miss the tab dividers at all. Anything I want to punch and keep as reference I just put in the very back after my empty refill pages. The pages are the now-discontinued reticle-grid Circa Vivacious refills.

wpid-20150423_163508.png

So that’s my work planner! I really love it, it’s working for me so well now – I’m sure I will eventually go back to my Smooth Sliver Cover, but for now, this gives me the Springtime color I need. It just makes me happy to look at it.

Review: Levenger SmartPlanner Agenda

A couple of months ago I had the opportunity to review the Levenger True Writer Select fountain pen, which I really enjoyed. Levenger was also generous enough to send me the SmartPlanner agenda system to review as well. So I started testing out the Levenger SmartPlanner letter-size agenda as my work planner, and thought I’d see if it could woo me away from my own Pretty Pretty Planner printables. After a few weeks in steady rotation, here are my impressions.

First of all, I really like the color and design of the SmartPlanner. If you’ve followed Levenger’s products for awhile, you know that before the SmartPlanner came out, their planners and refills were all monochromatic and boring. Case in point – this one. And this one. Annnnnd this one. Also, did I mention, this one? Levenger desperately needed to add some color and style to their planners.

So when I saw the SmartPlanner, I instantly liked the color scheme – soft, muted pastels that meshed perfectly with dividing tabs (also these) and pocket folders that are already staples in the Circa Accessories line.

First impressions, the planner is hefty! I expected that given it is letter-sized, but with the larger 1″ discs and all the weekly refills it’s definitely not purse-sized. But it’s a great size for a planner that stays on the desk all day. You can get a SmartPlanner assembled with discs and cover, or just the refills separately. I was sent the assembled SmartPlanner.

The front and back views are shown here:

wpid-20150331_111325-1.jpg

Levenger SmartPlanner Agenda – Front Cover

wpid-20150331_111336-1.jpg

Levenger SmartPlanner Agenda – Back Cover

The monthly tabs are a nice copper orange-brown with a scripted white font for the month names.

wpid-20150331_111414-1.jpg

Levenger SmartPlanner Agenda – Side View

The normal inside coversheet has space for contact information.

wpid-2015-03-31-12.00.08.jpg.jpeg

The first couple of pages provide space for personal/reference information, and an introduction to the SmartPlanner system, as well as yearly calendars.

wpid-2015-03-31-12.01.23.jpg.jpeg

wpid-2015-03-31-12.02.51.jpg.jpeg

The Monthly Pages

Each monthly tab page has a light orange shaded sheet on the reverse side.

wpid-2015-03-31-12.18.23.jpg.jpeg

wpid-2015-03-31-12.17.10.jpg.jpeg

The month-on-two-pages layout is roomy and spacious, with orange shading on the bottom half of each daily box. The 100 gsm paper is a hefty weight, and feels thick and substantial to the touch. Of course I tested it out with all my inked fountain pens and even some Sharpies and brush pens. Because of the shading on the back of these tabs there is minimal showthrough. Only with the heavy broad/thick nibbed pens and Sharpies could you see any signs of what was written on the other side.

wpid-2015-03-31-12.10.44.jpg.jpeg

Levenger SmartPlanner Agenda – Monthly View

The Weekly Pages

The weekly pages followed each monthly tab set. The left side page has boxes for the days of the week, and the right side page has sections for weekly goals, daily todo’s, and notes. I like the layout in general, although from a data flow perspective would rather have the pages reversed – plan out the weekly goals and todo’s on the first page, and then from there have the daily boxes on the next page. Also, how awesome does my lime green Lamy Safari look with these copper orange colors??

wpid-2015-03-31-12.19.15.jpg.jpeg

Levenger SmartPlanner Agenda – Weekly View

The paper quality, as with the monthly tabs, is actually pretty decent. I went at it with fountain pens, markers, Sharpies, even a WATERBRUSH (the palm tree sketch). The waterbrush caused some bleedthrough as was expected – the paper wasn’t quite THAT hardy. But the rest of the fountain pen writing didn’t have much showthrough. Here is the reverse side of the left side of the weekly layout above.

wpid-2015-03-31-12.20.39.jpg.jpeg

And the reverse side of the right side of the weekly layout above. The markers have some spots of bleedthrough, with the worst offender being the Bic Permanent Marker.

wpid-2015-03-31-12.21.27.jpg.jpeg

The SmartPlanner “App” System

So, here’s the metaphorical fly in the ointment for me. When I introduce the system to others. I can praise the monthly and weekly layout, the colors, the style – but then I always get asked, “But, what are these APP things?” So I have to awkwardly explain that the “Apps” are complementary add-on activity sheets you can get to supplement the SmartPlanner, such as to-do lists, meeting notes, etc.

But honestly, when I first saw the SmartPlanner was released, I was really excited – until I saw the “Apps” – then my reaction was pretty much like this:

Just … REALLY? I’m sorry – I love you guys, but you just can’t name add-ons “apps” – it’s a PAPER PLANNER, that’s not how this works!

That all being said, I got over my issue with the name quickly enough, mostly because the SmartPlanner Apps are just as nicely designed and colorful and coordinated as the main SmartPlanner. Along with the SmartPlanner Levenger also sent me the LTG 7-App Sampler Pack. Each “app” pad has 25 sheets and is made with 100gsm paper.

The “LTG 7-App Pack” is named so because it contains three LIST “apps” (To-Do, Take-With Lists, and Keep & Share Notes), one TASK “app” (Meeting Notes), and three GO “apps” (Travel Tamer, Ideation Station, and Doodler). I myself didn’t have an immediate work use for all of these apps right now, but took lots of pics to show them in their full-size glory.
1. To Do app
From the Levenger website: “Five color blocks give you more manageability—make one long list or five different ones, for daily or recurring tasks. Each color block can be for a different kind of To Do—work, home, fitness, and so on. Or assign different colors to various family or team members. With a column for prioritizing, plus a date and check-off box for marking progress.”

wpid-2015-04-11-19.15.33.jpg.jpegwpid-2015-04-11-19.14.34.jpg.jpegwpid-2015-04-11-19.12.58.jpg.jpeg

2. Take-With Lists app (perforated)
From the Levenger website: “Vertically perforated sheets mean you can keep separate lists for work and home, or for different projects. Keep these multiple lists in your Master Agenda till you’re ready to perf and take with.”

wpid-2015-04-11-18.57.34.jpg.jpegwpid-2015-04-11-18.56.30.jpg.jpegwpid-2015-04-11-18.55.29.jpg.jpeg
3. Keep & Share Notes app (semi-perforated)
From the Levenger website: “A delegator’s dream: give the perf’d side of the color block (5 per sheet) to the doer, and keep a record of your directions on the other. Or make it the traffic manager for items you lend, with a note to whom and when on the Keep side and a gentle reminder about returning on the Share side. You can also use the two sides independently, jotting flashes of inspiration on the Keep sheets and making notes to yourself on the Share sheets. (Place them where they’re most likely to jog your memory.) Let this app do the work for your memory, which you can put to better use.

wpid-2015-04-11-18.54.40.jpg.jpegwpid-2015-04-11-18.51.27.jpg.jpegwpid-2015-04-11-18.52.42.jpg.jpeg

4. Meeting Notes app
From the Levenger website: “This app helps you turn notes into useful references and action points. On the front, use separate sections for concepts, key points and action steps.  On the back, use the ruled white sheet for taking longer notes. A pagination line keeps track of multiple pages on the same topic.”

wpid-2015-04-11-19.11.37.jpg.jpegwpid-2015-04-11-19.10.25.jpg.jpegwpid-2015-04-11-19.09.08.jpg.jpeg
5. Travel Tamer app
From the Levenger website: “Consolidate info for each trip onto one simple sheet—flights on front; hotels, cars and sights on back. Use completed sheets as reference for repeat trips. They’re also a helpful record for expense

wpid-2015-04-11-19.07.40.jpg.jpegwpid-2015-04-11-19.06.10.jpg.jpegwpid-2015-04-11-19.05.07.jpg.jpeg
6. Ideation Station app
From the Levenger website: “Find a creative solution to a problem using different words to connect concepts. The Ideation Station app adapts the effective method that Todd Henry, the author of The Accidental Creative, has designed for starting with a challenge and ending up with possible—and often surprising—solutions. You can do all this on one sheet of paper (take some with you on the plane).

wpid-2015-04-11-19.19.51.jpg.jpegwpid-2015-04-11-19.18.14.jpg.jpegwpid-2015-04-11-19.16.38.jpg.jpeg

7. Doodler app
From the Levenger website: “Soft colors and different shapes (vertical blocks on back) just may help you doodle your way to ingenious new thoughts. Not a doodler? Use as a sketch pad or to jot notes.”

wpid-2015-04-11-19.03.24.jpg.jpegwpid-2015-04-11-19.01.35.jpg.jpegwpid-2015-04-11-19.00.17.jpg.jpeg

Conclusions

I really enjoyed testing out the Levenger SmartPlanner Agenda – many thanks to Levenger for the opportunity to see if it’d work for my work Circa. I became a fan of the overall look and style of the SmartPlanner – the soft colors, the tabs, everything looks fantastic! And overall the agenda, like everything Levenger, screams high quality. That all being said, since I was testing this planner out for my work Circa, the horizontal weekly layout just wasn’t fitting my needs. In my job, I do a lot of database testing, and keep track of my time on various projects by the hour. So while I don’t have many pre-scheduled appointments, a vertical weekly planner layout serves my needs much better than the horizontal daily boxes of the SmartPlanner. So I’ve passed it on to my husband who is really excited to give it a shot for his work planning needs. I really hope that in the future, Levenger expands its layout to incorporate other formats – I’d love to see a vertical layout in the same SmartPlanner style.

Review: Levenger True Writer Select Fountain Pen

As many of my repeat visitors know, I post about my Levenger stuffs often. Like A LOT a lot. I’ve been a diehard user of the Circa notebook system for 7 years now, so am always trying out new pages and covers and discs. But surprisingly, while I’ve read a bunch about their fountain pens, my only exposure to their pens has been the Levenger L-Tech I bought for my husband a couple of years ago. So when Levenger contacted me and asked if I wanted to review a fountain pen here on my blog, this was pretty much my exact reaction:

Yeah, I was THAT excited.

So of course I said YES! They sent me a True Writer Select fountain pen with a Fine nib, and TWO bottles of ink in Cobalt and Shiraz!!! This was a most-welcome surprise, as I’ve never tried any Levenger ink either. Reviews of the ink colors will come later, but for now, let’s take a look at this gorgeous new pen I have to play with.

The True Writer Select comes in Mediterranean (ocean blue), Stormy Weather (light grey), and Macchiato (coffee brownish). If you want to read some reviews of the Mediterranean colored pen, check out  Pen Habit and Pen Addict for some fabulous close-up pics.

Anyhoo, I was given the choice of colors to review. I normally don’t do brown pens at all, as I’m very much into bright colors. Which is a big reason I haven’t tried True Writers up until now, the colors tend to be very conservative and traditional. But since I am 100% in love with all things coffee (except chocolate covered espresso beans, because GROSS), Macchiato seemed like a slam dunk. How can a pen that looks like this go wrong??

When he saw the pen Levenger was sending me, the husband was all, “Oooh, if you don’t like it I’ll totally take it off your hands” – psh, fat chance of that Mister!

The Packaging:

I was already impressed with the packaging on the L-Tech, but hoooo boy! The True Writer Select has some pretty epic nesting-box awesomeness going on. I felt like I was cracking into a sarcophagus just trying to get to the pen.

First was a white cardboard sleeve:

wpid-20150220_163237-1.jpg

Next up, a grey box with Levenger printed in silver on the top:

wpid-2015-02-23-12.58.04.jpg.jpeg

The lid to this box came off to reveal a canvas mesh wrapped second box:

wpid-20150220_163621-1.jpg

Once you unwrapped the canvas-like material from the inner box, you saw that it is a nice felt-bottomed wooden display box – it has some impressive heft to it. When opened, the rim of the box is trimmed in a light wood that unfortunately didn’t capture well no matter how I tried with my lighting and camera. But let’s be honest – I only had eyes for the pen anyways! It also came with a standard twist-style converter and one standard international-sized (1/5″) ink cartridge.

wpid-20150220_163726-1.jpg

Which leads us into …..

The Color:

At first glance, I was all, what the heck? This isn’t coffee colored!? But as I turned it around under various lights, I came to realize the Macchiato color is actually very chameleon-like. In some lighting the swirls appear almost yellow-green or grey-brownish. My first thought was it was almost more of a mink/fur-coat color.

wpid-20150220_125303-1.jpg

Levenger True Writer Select in Macchiato

Levenger True Writer Select in Machiatto

Levenger True Writer Select in Macchiato

In other lights, it appears brown.

wpid-2015-02-23-11.32.10.jpg.jpeg

Levenger True Writer Select in Macchiato

wpid-20150220_163447-1.jpg

Levenger True Writer Select in Macchiato

As you can see, the swirls are a very elusive color and difficult to photograph. If you ever had Tiger’s Eye polished rocks as a kid …

The pen is somewhat like those rocks in person, in that you can’t keep from turning it around in your hand to watch the resin swirls change. But it’s definitely not exactly the coffee/caramel brown I was expecting.

wpid-20150223_135143-1.jpg

Levenger True Writer Select in Macchiato

Looks really brown in this pic!

wpid-20150223_111224-1.jpg

Levenger True Writer Select in Macchiato

The Size:

At first glance, this pen is HUGE. Both in length and width. But it is surprisingly lightweight, especially in comparison to the hefty L-Tech. Here are some (not-so-super-scientific) measurements and weights:

wpid-2015-02-23-11.27.08.jpg.jpeg

Fountain Pen Size Comparisons

Pen  –  Length  –  Weight:
Lamy Studio (Royal Red)  –  13.7 cm  –  33g
Monteverde Invincia (Stealth)  – 13.9 cm  – 41g
Levenger L-Tech (Stealth)  – 13.6 cm  – 49g
Rebecca Moss Mystery Pen  – 14 cm  – 47g
Lamy Al-Star (2015 LE Copper Orange)  – 13.7 cm  – 21g
Levenger True Writer Select (Machiatto)  –  15 cm  – 37g
Monteverde Artista (Purple)  – 12.7 cm  – 25g

As mentioned above, the True Writer Select is surprisingly comfortable to hold for such a huge pen. When posted it feels a little unbalanced, too heavy towards the bottom. Here it is shown next to the L-Tech, both pens posted.

wpid-2015-02-23-11.20.58.jpg.jpeg

Levenger True Writer Select in Macchiato and Levenger L-Tech

The End Thingies:

I can’t tell if the end thingies (yep, that’s my technical term) are black or just dark brown. But the top one is pointed ever so slightly. The clip is unobtrusive and I haven’t had any issues with it. And that’s about all I have to say about any of them.

wpid-2015-02-23-11.59.15.jpg.jpeg

wpid-2015-02-23-12.00.59.jpg.jpeg

The Cap Trim:

The pen has a screw-on cap. One side says ‘LEVENGER’ and the other ‘Select’. I like the script font that is used for the Select side, it adds an elegant touch to the pen.

wpid-2015-02-23-11.56.36.jpg.jpeg

wpid-20150223_115431-1.jpg

The Nib:

As I mentioned earlier, my only experience with Levenger nibs has been with Medium and Fine nibs on the L-Tech. The Medium nib I thought was butter-smooth but way too wide for my tastes. My husband ended up ordering a Fine nib separately because it was too wide for his tiny writing style as well – SIDEBAR: can I just say I LOVE pens that let you order the nibs separately!? It’s so convenient to have that option, rather than buying a whole new pen.  When he got the new F nib I was impressed with how it wrote, but was still a little put off by the weight of the pen – especially after my lightweight Lamys) –  so didn’t really play with it much. But I’ve also been conflicted about my everyday pen carries lately, as I like fine nibs for writing, but want the broader nibs that really let the ink color shine more too.

In this case, practicality won out and I went with a Fine nib. Levenger sent this pen along with a note stating that they were interested to hear what I thought of the F nib, as it was somewhat different from their other nibs. In appearances it does look pretty different. The True Writer nib is larger, with different pattern etched into the steel, and a round hole missing from the L-Tech nibs.

wpid-20150223_110731-1-1.jpg

Levenger L-Tech M, True Writer Select F, and L-Tech F nibs.

wpid-2015-02-23-11.24.24.jpg.jpeg

Levenger L-Tech M, True Writer Select F, and L-Tech F nibs.

More importantly, I inked it up right away with some of the new Levenger Shiraz ink, and it wrote perfectly right out of the box! Smooth, always starts up, a fine but not needle-fine line. No squeakiness, scratchiness, or other complaints. Here is a comparison to some Lamy pens (which tend to write wider lines than most):

wpid-2015-02-23-11.22.08.jpg.jpeg

I think the Levenger F nib actually writes a finer line than the Lamy F. The F nib on the True Writer Select also looks a teensy bit finer than the L-Tech, but that could just be a factor of the inks as well.

wpid-2015-02-23-11.19.00.jpg.jpeg

I REALLY enjoy writing with this nib. It’s just ridiculously smooth.

Conclusions:

I’ve been using the Levenger True Writer Select for a few days now and really like this pen. My fingers tend to slide down the grip a little, but I think that’s the nature of the polished metal grip section more than anything – I’ve been using Lamys so long I need to get used to metal again! It is larger than most pens, and this might be slightly off-putting to those with smaller hands, but I’ve surprised with how well I adapted to it. I think I’d have preferred to see a magnetic cap too, but that’s a minor critique.

One complaint I’ve read in other reviews and noticed when using this pen as well: the pen barrel does tend to unscrew itself ever so slightly from the feed with frequent use. I’ll go to uncap the pen, and have to give the barrel a few twists to get it back to where it should be. It’s not a deal-breaker, but something to be aware of. The husband says his L-Tech does that to him fairly often too.

Price wise, with a retail value of $169 this pen is definitely not an entry-level fountain pen – although the accountant in me has to wonder how much of that cost goes into the elaborate packaging. Fancy packaging to me is somewhat of a waste – I can’t bring myself to get rid of it, so put the boxes away in a closet and never use or display them again. But again, that’s the practical side of me coming out. Levenger is playing up the gift-giving side of pens, promoting that the box the pen comes in can be engraved. And as any customer of Levenger knows, their items are priced at a premium and people have come to expect fancy packaging that the company is known for. And this pen is definitely marketed towards someone who already knows fountain pens and perhaps wants to upgrade to a nicer pen or expand their collection. Or who just wants to treat themselves.

(Just add FOUNTAIN PENS to the above meme haha. Also, I may have been binge-watching Parks and Rec this weekend.)

And besides, Levenger regularly has sales and coupons where the pen is available for a good $35 less or more, often with free shipping. And its about on target market-wise with its competitors. I recently got a Visconti Van Gogh Portrait in Blue, and it was of similar construction, materials, and price point. The Levenger steel F nib actually writes better than the steel Visconti F nib, which I thought was very nail like and almost too fine, whereas the Levenger F nib I took immediately to and can’t recommend highly enough.

All in all the True Writer Select is a solid, attractive fountain pen, and I seriously don’t know why I waited so long to get one! Many many thanks to Levenger who provided me this pen to review. My husband SO isn’t getting this pen, that’s for sure!

wpid-20150223_111110-1.jpg

Levenger True Writer Select in Macchiato

Review: Levenger Circa Vivacious Notebooks with “CrossDots” Paper

I am a huge fan of Levenger’s Circa notebooks, but not necessarily their refill paper. The standard annotation ruled refills are not known for being fountain pen friendly, and in the past have often had significant feathering and showthrough. It got to the point where I started making my own refills, not only because of the price savings but also because I could ensure the paper quality was better. I’ve heard its changed for the better since then, but I’m still working on some old refills so haven’t tried anything newer yet.

Levenger did come out with some Rhodia paper (in both Circa notebooks and refill sets), which made fountain pen users super happy, as Rhodia has been the gold-standard in quality paper. It’s amazingly smooth paper, silky soft and perfect for all inks. My own issue was that the ruled lines were a dark purple, which I personally find distracting, so I gave away the rest of my refills.

Recently though I’ve been hearing good things about the Circa Vivacious “CrossDots” notebooks and refill paper, how it was an amazing cross-dot pattern and super fountain pen friendly at 100 gsm. Sadly I think it’s been discontinued, as its been listed in the Levenger Outlet page for awhile now and supplies seem to be dwindling. It’s also available on Amazon, in Letter and Junior size notebooks.

So after getting a 20% off and free shipping coupon for Levenger recently, the price of the CrossDots notebooks was too good to pass up, I had to check them out. I ordered a couple of Junior size notebooks. First impressions: what fun colors these notebooks come in!! There are ruled (orange cover), grid/ruled combo (blue cover), and crossdots (green cover) versions.

wpid-2015-02-18-20.59.00.jpg.jpeg

Levenger Circa Vivacious Notebook

What isn’t immediately obvious is that the covers of the notebook are clear plastic, with lime green coversheets in a thick cardstock behind them.

wpid-2015-02-18-20.56.06.jpg.jpeg

Levenger Circa Vivacious Notebook

The inside of the green coversheets are a brilliant orange.

wpid-2015-02-18-20.58.03.jpg.jpeg

Levenger Circa Vivacious Notebook

The back cover has a built-in pocket. It’s a nice feature, but a little too loose for the little things I threw in it as a test – they fell out pretty easily.

wpid-2015-02-18-20.57.09.jpg.jpeg

Levenger Circa Vivacious Notebook

And the paper! No bleeding, feathering, showthrough, anything. It’s perfect with every pen i threw at it. I was also worried that the green crossdots pattern would be distracting, ala the Rhodia refill. But it is actually a refreshing pop of color – I’m really surprised how much I like it.

wpid-2015-02-18-20.54.38.jpg.jpeg

Levenger Circa Vivacious Notebook

And the green crossdots match my Pretty Pretty Planner pages perfectly!! It was meant to be.

wpid-2015-02-11-20.41.51.jpg.jpeg

Levenger Circa Vivacious CrossDots Paper and Pretty Pretty Planner

I then realized as soon as I got the Junior size notebooks what a good thing I’d found, and immediately ordered another couple in Letter size while the getting was still good. That way I can enjoy the paper in both my Junior planner and Letter size work notebooks.

wpid-2015-02-18-20.52.07.jpg.jpeg

Levenger Circa Vivacious Notebooks

wpid-2015-02-18-20.51.19.jpg.jpeg

Levenger Circa Vivacious Notebooks

And these colors remind me of summer!! I’m so ready to leave winter behind!

wpid-20150211_110027-1.jpg

Levenger Circa Vivacious Notebooks and Lamy Safari Fountain Pens

Review: Levenger Circa Smooth Sliver Notebook with Pockets

Awhile ago I posted about the Junior-Size Levenger Circa Smooth Sliver notebook I bought from eBay and how much I enjoyed it. I liked it so much in fact, when Levenger had a sale recently I had to grab a letter-size notebook for my work planner. The letter-size version of the Levenger Circa Sliver Cover with Pockets is just as great as its smaller version, and now I have a matching pair! Here are the unboxing pics!
First of all, I was surprised to see that Levenger wasn’t shipping the notebook in their usual boxes with cloth covers anymore. All the other notebooks I’ve bought from them have come packaged that way, but instead, it was shipped in a plastic shrinkwrapped bag. Once unwrapped, I was able to see this luscious Cocoa colored notebook.

The Levenger Circa Sliver Notebook with Pockets in Cocoa
The back cover:

The Levenger Circa Sliver Notebook with Pockets in Cocoa
The most important benefit this notebook cover offers is how incredibly thin and light it is! It takes up virtually no room on the discs compared to other covers..

wpid-2015-02-11-15.23.11.jpg.jpeg

wpid-20150211_085943.jpg

wpid-20150211_085950.jpg

I was also really impressed to see a new informational sheet on the inside of the notebook – titled “Levenger Tips for Effective Note-taking”. Yes, it’s a lot of tips I’ve heard before, but I still thought it was kind of cool to see the handwriting and tips.

image

Levenger also includes tip sheets on how to remove covers and pages safely too. The company does a great job at educating its customers on the Circa system and how to use it effectively.

image

The notebook came with Levenger’s standard annotation ruled refills. While in the past I’ve not been overly impressed with the paper quality of their standard refills, there is no feathering or bleedthrough on these pages that I’ve seen.

wpid-2015-02-11-21.13.43.jpg.jpeg

The back of my sample page:

wpid-2015-02-11-21.14.21.jpg.jpeg

All in all, I strongly believe the notebook would be improved with a pen loop, and in a perfect world, an elastic strap closure. But its the closest cover I’ve found yet to the clear plastic covers I love. I can easily fold it over on itself (my major requirement), it doesn’t take any room whatsoever on the discs (my second requirement) and it comes in more than boring black! I was actually really torn between getting the letter size in Cocoa to match the Junior, or the Navy Blue. I literally put each in and out of my shopping cart several times before finally deciding on the Cocoa. It seemed the most business-friendly, would go with most of my aluminum disc colors, and is a nice rich brown. I definitely recommend

Shown here in Letter-size with my “plum” aluminum discs, and in Junior-size with “caribbean” aluminum discs. And my Rebecca Moss fountain pen.

wpid-20150211_170624-1.jpg

The Levenger Circa Sliver Notebook with Pockets (in Cocoa)

*Edited to add: I do not work for Levenger, just like their products. I do not get items free to review. Everything on my blog I’ve purchased myself, much to my wallet’s despair.*

Review: Junior Smooth Sliver Notebook with Pockets

As a huge Levenger Circa fan (*cough* addict), I’ve been eyeballing these new ‘Smooth Sliver Notebooks with Pockets‘, so when a Junior size in Cocoa popped up on Ebay I jumped at it:

And was excited to unwrap and see this beauty!

Levenger Circa Smooth Sliver Notebook in Cocoa

Levenger Circa Smooth Sliver Notebook in Cocoa

The cocoa is a nice chocolatey brown. What’s unique is how the leather cover extends all the way past the punches, whereas usually the leather is affixed to a black plastic strip.

wpid-img_20141125_081807.jpg

Levenger Circa Smooth Sliver Notebook in Cocoa

The inside view of the cover.

wpid-img_20141125_081948.jpg

Levenger Circa Smooth Sliver Notebook in Cocoa – Inside Front Cover

Best of all, look at how little room it takes up on the discs!

wpid-img_20141125_083257.jpg

Levenger Circa Smooth Sliver Notebook in Cocoa – Profile View

So then the question became, what color aluminum discs should I use!? I had 1″ copper and 1″ cornflower blue just waiting to be used in a notebook:

The lighting is way kinds of off in this pic! The copper looks gold.

The lighting is way kinds of off in this pic! The copper looks gold.

I went with the Cornflower Blue discs, and really love how they look against the brown.

wpid-img_20141125_112554.jpg

Levenger Circa Smooth Sliver Notebook with Cornflower Blue Discs

This pairing works perfectly with the Levenger Multicolored Plastic Tab Dividers.

wpid-img_20141125_113101.jpg

Levenger Circa Multicolored Plastic Tab Dividers

I just can’t get over how little room it takes on these discs!

wpid-img_20141125_112902.jpg

Cornflower Blue Levenger Circa Discs