Many aspects of our lives have become digitized, and writing and drawing are no exception. Many of us use some sort of digital tools for keeping up our schedule, taking notes, brainstorming new ideas, or sketching. Even though digital tools offer great convenience, there is something about old-fashioned writing with pen and paper that inspires creativity in us. The designer behind notesX believes writing down your thoughts and ideas with pen and paper is the best outlet. However, traditional pen and paper may not necessarily be economical or ecological since the traditional paper cannot be reused. notesX is like a combination of a whiteboard and a notebook, providing great reusability and customizability with the familiarity of a paper notebook.
Designer: Hidehiko Fukushima
This innovative notebook utilizes small magnets to bind the pages, the front cover, and the back cover. Since the papers are not glued or sewn together like traditional notebooks, you can easily add, remove, or move pages around as much as you like.
You can even take a page out from the bundle and stick it to metallic surfaces like a fridge door or a magnetic whiteboard. The front cover also has pockets to hold cards and small pieces of paper, things you’d usually stash inside a normal paper notebook.
The notebook’s special papers aren’t actually made with paper. Instead, they use synthetic resins and natural minerals. While the material offers a high-quality surface for writing from the get-go, its special property is that it can erase marks easier than you could when using a pencil. You can write with erasable pens like Pilot’s FriXioin series and then erase what you wrote by rubbing a plastic eraser that usually comes with these pens. You can also use wet wipes to erase a larger area or simply rinse the page down with water when you want to erase everything on it.
The pages themselves are minimal and bare, but there is a faint blue grid on the paper that acts as a guide without distracting you from what you’re writing. The synthetic paper also prevents glaring when taking photos of a page, making it easy to detect the edges of the page when you want to digitize it. This way, you can keep a digital copy of the page before you erase its contents. With this, you have an immortal and infinite notebook, allowing you to rearrange and reuse pages as much as you need.
The notebook has an elastic pen holder that can accommodate any pen with a diameter of 9mm to 15mm, regardless of whether it has a clip or not. A rubber band also keeps the notebook from opening accidentally, similar to those on notebooks like Moleskine. Beyond offering this basic function, this rubber band brings a philosophical aspect to the notebook. Almost like a ritual, the act of removing the rubber band to open the notebook commences your creative activity and putting it back to close it gives you great satisfaction by marking the completion of writing your idea down before it flies away.