Freeleaf Multicolored Annotation Ruled Pads LTR
Disappointing for fountain pen use
I'm surprised by the positive reviews because my experience has been disappointing -- at least when using a fountain pen. Being taught to sandwich the negative between a positive start and close, I'll start with my compliment on design and concept. The boxes across the top and the outline/task bar to the left are VERY helpful. I also like the concept of colored paper generally because, if you take a lot of notes, (a) the variation adds a little spice to the ordinary and (b) my personal notes can stand out among files or reams of "white" documents that I deal with. On to the constructive criticism: while the paper stock / weight is nice for fountain pen use, there either is a funky treatment to the paper or some film over the pages that causes many fountain pen inks to immediately defuse, separate, skip. It's akin to the experience of trying to use a fountain pen to write on a plastic laminate -- it just doesn't work very well. Accordingly, any "joy" or "plus" to how wisely laid out the page is or the pleasant colors on offer is overwhelmingly trumped by the "take-away" of not being able to use a fountain pen (at least not consistently). Better to enjoy a fountain pen on boring mid-weight "copier paper" than to have cool paper that a fountain pen succumbs to... As for ending with a positive, um, well, that's hard. How 'bout "I've typically found Levenger products to be top-flite and very well-conceived" (just not this particular product).
PS: In fairness, I hesitated to check "NO" on whether I'd recommend this to a friend. The answer is "YES, absolutely" if the person didn't use fountain pens, "NO, absolutely not" if he/she did...
PPS: I'm not talking about an apparent "discoloration" of the ink; that's to be expected when writing on colored paper (Color ABC logically will appear differently on white compared to light blue paper). Also, the pen type isn't the issue. I've used comparatively wet and dry pens, from Fine to Broad nibs, and the outcome is the same. I will say that the "ink type" does make some difference -- such that, while no ink performs as well on these Levenger pads as they do on other high quality papers, darker inks from Iroshizuku, Diamine, Visconti, and Rohrer perform better; most inks from Noodlers, J Herbin, Private Reserve, Aurora and DeAtramentis perform very (VERY) poorly. I've not yet tried my inks from Caran d'Ache, Stipula, Mont Blanc, Platinum, Waterman, or Omas; but I've tried enough to know that this is a more miss than hit product for fountain pen users (the nice weight and layout notwithstanding).
February 22, 2014
Just started using these pads for everyday use and really enjoy them. They don't bleed through with fountain pens and I like the way they are laid out with options for notes on the side. A reasonable value. I'll likely re-purchase once done with these.
February 9, 2014
Love this colorful paper
I love these pads of paper -they are silky to the touch and wonderful to write on - they make writing a joy!
January 18, 2014
Love this Notepad
I take lots of meeting notes and need to do a lot of writing for my job. I love that the paper holds up to the ink of my fountain pen, roller ball or markers. Its holds up well for markers for dootles. I like that I can pull out something in the margin. The different colors just spice things up. I can also assigin a color to a particular project so I know for quick grab which notepad I need on the run.
January 11, 2014
I tend to have a heavy hand when taking notes, and prefer using a fountain pen. With the exception of one brand of ink I use, this is the best paper for note-taking. And doesn't strain the eyes.
December 14, 2013
I have used Levenger pads for years and there are FEW that even come close. YES they are more money, but they are much better also. I just wish there where YELLOW or colored pads that where FULLY lined.
November 9, 2013
The quality is superb and we just love this notepad paper in our house. I seriously wish I could use this paper everywhere.
May 15, 2013
Makes writing feel like a LUXURY
I simply love this smooth, thick high quality paper. I am taking language courses (for fun) at a local college and taking copious notes on this gorgeous paper feels so good. I use high quality ball point pens and the writing implement just glides effortlessly on the paper. It's so nice to use both sides of the paper and see no run-through whatsoever (appeals to my thrifty side). This paper makes me feel like I'm pampering myself and makes studying a pleasure!
September 10, 2011
Allow me to be contrarian . . .
I can't agree with the glowing reviews. These would be fine pads IF I did not use a fountain pen. The paper feels wonderful, very heavy and smooth to the touch, and the colors are great for being able to find my notes in a stack of white papers. But fountain pen inks bleed through even with a dry-writing extra fine nib. I've only tried the salmon pad so far, but I may be sending my pads back.
My experience with Levenger paper has been hit and miss. The pads and Circa paper I've tried have not been fountain pen friendly at all. On the other hand, the wired notebook I have is fantastic! As far as I can figure, it's all supposed to be the same paper, so I guess it's either a quality control issue or different vendors for the different papers.
February 4, 2011
New Freeleaf note pad - canary paper
As a long-time user of Levenger Notationery note pads (canary color) which were perfect writing surfaces for my roller ball pen, I am unhappy with its replacement, the Freeleaf note pad.
The Freeleaf still excels in smoothness and complete lack of bleed-through, but due to its much more pale yellow color, now lacks the strong contrast and high readability of the previous Notationery pads. In addition, the more darkly printed lines compete more with the hand written text for the eye's attention.
The only defect in the previous Notationery pads was the inconsistency of the microperfs. They were usually excellent, resulting in easy and quiet tear off, but some lots were not cut through enough and would not tear neatly - leaving paper bits that, if not removed with a tweezers, would cause the next sheet to leave even more of its top edge behind. The new Freeleaf pads solve this problem by using slice perforation, but create new problems. They leave a rough edge at the top with visible paper nibs every 4 mm. Plus, they are much more noisy when tearing out a page, making them less suitable for taking notes at meetings and lectures.
Under inspection with a magnifier, the Freeleaf paper is shinier, resulting in some light glare that is absent with the more matte finish Notationery paper. It is also more irregular in fiber appearance. Comparing lines drawn across abutting edges of the two papers, there are bits of background paper color showing through the ink on the Freeleaf paper, while the ink completely covers the Notationery paper. This also contributes to the reduced contrast of the new paper.
In summary, I am hoping that Levenger will make the old type pads available again or else the search is on once more for the ideal note pad.
September 25, 2010