Labeling Moleskines


I bought my first Moleskine around 1999, and have used them ever since. I read Bruce Chatwin’s "Songlines" about 10 years prior, and when I saw my first Moleskine on the bookstore shelf, his passage came back to me.  I remember when I read about Moleskines a decade before, mourning the fact that they were extinct before I ever saw one. I felt I had struck gold!

Since then I’ve bought my Moleskines in California, Florence Italy, and Hong Kong.  I live in Thailand now and they’re not available here, so I buy a few whenever I see them while on the road.  But it’s good to know I have as a backup when I’m down to my last pages there’s no trip planned.

I use the large, unlined notebook and turn it 90 degrees to write, using it like a Reporter, because my handwriting is large.

My dream Moleskine would be the large size with good watercolor paper.  It is absolutely the perfect size for me, not too big to carry, but big enough for expression.  I look forward to seeing the new Watercolor Moleskines when I’m in California this summer.  But I’d really like a version that opens as
a traditional notebook, with binding on the long side, rather than opening as a Reporter with binding on the short side.  I prefer the 2-page spread to be a big, nearly square canvas to work on, rather than a long thin rectangle.  But maybe it’ll inspire me to do landscapes.

I have a question for the Moleskine hackers out there, about labeling Moleskines.

I use several Moleskines at one time, so labeling them 1, 2, 3… doesn’t make much sense because they overlap in time.  I have one for a daily journal, one for projects I’m developing, one for sketches, another for daily notes, reminders, to-dos, another for quotes.

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Believe it or not, I’ve never labeled the outside of any of my notebooks. On the "As a Reward" page I write the dates when I filled the book, and keep them in order on the bookshelf.  But now it’s getting a bit out of hand, so I need a labeling system.

I could label them "Journal 2006 1, 2, 3" "Sketches 2006 8, 9" and shelve them in chronological order of completion.  (So Journal 2 could be next to Sketches 8).  But I’m sure one of you has a more clever way.

I’ve also thought of stacking all the Moleskines I finished in 2005 and writing very large/tall, "2005" across the entire stack of spines.  So that when they’re on the bookshelf I see the whole year in one block.  And then I know the chronological order of each book in relation to the others because they’ll be shelved in the correct order to read "2005." Then the individual spines could say "Journal 1, 2, 3" etc.

Other ideas?

Any alternatives to the silver Sharpie?  It seems too brash to me.
Something softer, more elegant?

Sandy Shum

Image: ABF

Print it in Moleskine MSK format
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