ABSTRACT – The Rustico Expedition Leather Notebook is a great alternative to a traditional notebook as well as a solid choice for those who are looking to get a Midori Traveller’s Notebook on a more modest budget. It is a great way to keep several notebooks together.
I purchased the Rustico Expedition Leather Notebook on a whim when I was looking for a notebook that could accommodate several projects at the same time. At first, I thought of getting a planner with dividers, something similar to a Filofax. Eventually, I stumbled upon the Midori Traveler’s Notebook but was a bit put off by the price. Just as I was about to bite the bullet, I chanced upon the Expedition. It was the perfect fit – simple, flexible and prettttyyyy.
I first saw the notebook (and eventually purchased it) on the Chapters (Indigo, whatever) website. I actually didn’t even visit the Rustico website until I received my package and fell in love with the product I received. With the USD-CAD exchange rate as it is right now, it actually worked to my benefit to order through Chapters. I was also able to take advantage of a 15% discount and free shipping, while avoiding duties.
Rustico vs. Midori
First things first: why did I choose the Rustico Expedition Leather Notebook over the Midori Traveler’s Notebook?
There are two reasons. The first was budget. As mentioned before, I thought the Midori was a bit too expensive. Though the Rustico notebook is still on the expensive end (for me), it is a bit cheaper than the Midori ($50CAD vs. $64CAD). The fact that I had a 15% off coupon also helped. In the end, the Rustico was over $20 cheaper. Considering that I still would have had to purchase refills if I had bought the Midori, this amount was considerable.
The second reason why I chose the Rustico over the Midori was due to the size. The Rustico is 5.5″ x 8.5″ while the Midori is 4.9″ x 8.7″. The difference may not seem significant, but the Midori cannot fit a lot of standard sized notebooks, such as the cahiers by Moleskine. Instead, you can only use refills made by Midori themselves or notebooks sold on etsy. With the Rustico, not only am I able to choose from a whole array of refills from different brands, it also meant that I could use notebooks I already owned. Also, while Midori offers accessories such as folder, zipper pouches and card pouches, Rustico does not. However, based on the measurements of these items, I believe the Midori accessories would fit in the Rustico.
My first thought upon receiving the notebook was how expensive it looked (this is the most expensive notebook I own so maybe I just don’t know any better). Not only is it an organizational dream, but it looks good while doing it. In the time that I’ve had it, the leather on the notebook has taken a bit of a beating and there are some dents and pockmarks. I can’t fault the quality of the leather though – I brought this upon myself. I tend to throw things in my backpack without a second thought. It’s just how I am and have always been. I actually love imperfections like these because they remind me of the journey.
The refill that comes with the notebook is 5″ x 8.125″ with 96 dot grid pages. The pages are thicker than those of a Moleskine. They are pretty standard. You can buy them separate from the Expedition.
Bad things 🙁
There were two quality issues that I noticed when I received my notebook. First was some discolouration on lower corner of the inside back cover. It’s not something that bothers me at all – it doesn’t affect the way the leather looks, feels or functions. I do not mind have a slightly damaged yet completely functional item knowing that the company did not throw it away for superficial reasons. However, I can see this being an issue for some potential buyers.
Secondly, the premium refill that came with the notebook seemed to be twisted out of shape, in that the spine of the notebook was not straight. I wouldn’t even blame Rustico for this one, as it seems that it was put together properly – the sheets all line up. I think this may have been the result of improper storage or damage during shipping.
Besides that, the Expedition is fantastic. I would definitely recommend it for those who are looking for an easy, nice way of keeping several notebooks organized. It may seem expensive, but it is definitely worth it, in my opinion. You can keep numerous refills in it, depending on how creative you are! I currently have three notebooks in mine – the Rustico notebook that came with it and two black, large Moleskine cahiers.
Here’s a video on how I set it up:
If you have any questions about this product or have suggestions or feedback to offer, please leave a comment or send me a message on Facebook! Also, if there are typos or grammar mistakes because I’m writing this super last minute, PLEASE TELL ME PLEASE. Also, my husband told me to change my opening TL;DR to ABSTRACT because it’s more accurate – do you agree?