Rough Drift

"Small" writing challenges for my small writing talent. Hotel note pads are the only space allowed. Let's see if I can strip it down and tighten it up to learn something. Improving my skill of weird fiction.

Review: Kokuyo Systemic, refillable notebook cover.


An easy way to carry your travel journal? What I stumbled upon is, I think, the best alternative to the leather kings of travel journals and note taking folios; those popular brands with leather style such as Midori or many other Etsy and Pinterest produced leather knockoffs. The problem all of those products have is their cost of entry. $50 and higher seem to be going rates for any decent sized notebook cover. The Kokuyo Systemic, in A5 format, was under $15 on Amazon. It wasn’t leather, but then nothing in leather came in a REAL A5 size, it was all in the Midori ‘slim’ A5 version. (They do make it in other sizes as well, A5, A6, B5, B6-ringed, so check those out.)

I had earlier found, about a year ago, one of those perfect notebooks for travel and coffee shop use. Muji creates the A5 notebook with amazing quality smooth paper. It is pretty much fountain pen proof and the product is the high-quality paper inside (the outside is card stock but simple and with a colorful fabric tape binding) so for a great deal, again on Amazon, I procured a large stack of them and their 60 pages inside of each fabric taped bound books. However, the ability to go places with them and carry everything else I need, well, I didn’t want to carry a satchel or backpack. Enter the need for a notebook cover.


I’ve used this product for the last few weeks. The Kokuyo Systemic is a basic notebook cover but has characteristics of a Midori. That being the ability to fit more than one notebook inside. I have a lined notebook on the front cover, and a second notebook – graph paper grid – in the back half. Inside the back cover, there’s even a slot in the plastic for what appears to be business cards.



On both covers is an outside pocket. It’s not overly tight but if you have pens with pocket clips on their sides, they will stay put nicely and I can squeeze in a few pencils while I’m at it. There’s even enough room for a second smaller notebook, as you can see in these pictures. That’s my small book of completely terrible college poetry. It fits in the pocket, and it can fit inside the notebook as well if you want to do that.



Everything is held together in a nice flat travel arrangement with an elastic band built in.  Also, we have two book marks so you can mark each notebook separately. I’m truly very happy with it and for the money, I could have more than one for multiple projects at a time for the same price as one Midori or any other $50 leather product without pockets for pens. Of course, the outer surface, made of a tough canvas like material, is pretty tough but itn’s leather so there will be limits to the rhino gouging it may see, but into how violent of a world are you taking your writing?


It’s constructed nicely, the stitching is great and the color combinations are really nice and look modern. It currently holds two sixty-page notebooks and it could hold much thicker ones as well. It’s under $15, so you might as well pick one up. It also came with a notebook inside to start with, but I put that aside and used my own. A regulation sized A5 will fit perfectly snug.

Happy writing.


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This entry was posted on March 16, 2017 by in #creative writing, observational, review, travel, Uncategorized and tagged , , , .
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