We schedule appointments and meetings on our smartphones and computers, we take notes on our tablets and even journal through apps. But for some people — or everyone, on certain occasions — our tech devices can hinder our creative juices. The practices of handwriting, calligraphy and even sketching are far from dead, and to motivate you to get the creativity flowing from pen to paper we discovered some innovative notebooks that will make your old Five-Stars embarrassed.
1. Mod Notebooks ($29): This gorgeous notebook merges the craft of physical handwriting with the digital world. After filling out your plain, ruled or dot-gridded pages, mail it back to the company and they will scan and digitize the entire booklet within 5 days. Then enjoy all your once-real-life writing on the Mod app for the rest of your life.
2. Passion Planner ($25-$30 or download the free PDF): If you’re not an iCal gal, this leather-bound organizer will be your savior. It’s filled with a long-term and short-term goals exercise followed up by weekly and monthly focuses; spots for good things that happened for the week + motivational quotes to keep your spirits up; personal and work to do lists; and a blank section for anything you want — doodling, note taking, etc. This is seriously the most in-depth planner you will ever find.
3. Appointed ($20): This elegantly packaged and simply designed notebook is rugged — the cover is water resistant, the coils are made of brass — and eye popping. Everyone in the room will be asking “What are you writing on?”
4. Code + Quill ($15-$20): These were designed by creatives, for creatives. With left pages marked by a dot-grid system and right pages printed with the company’s signature Indentation Rule, this notebook is the perfect balance of creative writing and drawing.
5. The Spark Notebook ($28): No need to stress about keeping track of your individual notebook, planner and journal any longer, as this multi-faceted piece brings them all together in one package. By combining the three functions blank pages come in handy for, this notebook could turn you into the most efficient person in the office.
6. Bull + Stash ($25-$50): A refillable notebook wrapped in leather? If there were ever a “Best Dressed” list for notebooks, this one would totally be at the top.
7. Moleskine Livescribe Notebook ($30): The ruler of the fine notebook world has a super innovative notebook that will instantly take your written text and transform it to the digital platform. If you pair this page-turner with the Livescribe 3 Smartpen ($150-$200), your notes and doodles will pop up on your screen, where you can even edit that copywriting or graph crafting.
8. ClipBook ($20-$25): Combine the durability of a hardcover book with the flipping capability of a notepad and you get this magnetic device. Throw some sheets of paper underneath the protective cover and take this pad wherever writing is required.
9. Esquoia ($10-$38): We’ve all dreamed of having a pocket-size — or at least bag-size — dry erase board, and now that fantasy is a reality. Get your drawing or writing on without the worries of detrimental errors, as all it takes is a little water and a napkin to wipe that mistake away.
10. RocketBook ($25): This high-tech pen companion — currently on Indiegogo — works just like your go-to tablet would, with the added perk of letting you practice your handwriting. Once your meeting notes are complete, you press a few buttons on the pages to email your specific doc or send it to Dropbox. Then the *coolest* part of the process happens: throw the RocketBook in the microwave to clear those pages for fresh notetaking.
11. Monsieur Notebook ($25+): When the options at the office supply store don’t appeal to you, this maker comes in handy. Select the size, paper, color of the cover and even a graphic for this notebook so you can get personal with your writing buddy.
12. Baron Fig ($9-$16): You know the worst part about notebooks? The curves that leave less room to create. This notebook company has perfected the formula, so your book lays completely flat, enabling you to use up all that paper space. After choosing between a blank, ruled or dot-grid notebook filled with nearly 200 pages — 12 of them perforated — you’ll be ready to tackle anything that comes your way.
13. Whitelines Link (Free on iOS + Android, download paper): Write or draw on this company’s paper, then snap a shot of your work to instantly digitize it. That physical paper will turn into something that looks like it was developed on the computer, so you’re basically a graphic designer ;)
14. Rite In the Rain ($7+): Sometimes creativity strikes in the most inopportune times — like when it’s raining. Fear the elements no more with this waterproof notebook. You can open it during a rainstorm or while wading through the river and hit that pen to paper.
15. Let’s Go Letter Hunting ($17): Make a scavenger hunt all about finding and then recreating letters with this sketching notebook. Let the creativity really flow by challenging yourself to a letter-a-day creation.
Which notebook will you be picking up to get your handwritten creativity on? Let us know in the comments.