Field Notes Unexposed Edition Review

As I was thinking through what to review for this weekend, it suddenly struck me. I haven’t done a single paper review since I started this blog. Appalled at my lack of content regarding that area, I took the closest thing I had in reach and decided to review it. That item happened to be the Field Notes Unexposed edition I picked up in February, but didn’t start using until recently. So on to the review.


I was initially a little hesitant to get a pack of Field Notes. I had heard all the praise people had for it. The convenience, utility, and benefits all seemed like it was well worth it, but something held me back. for the longest time, I didn’t know what it was, but I found out after I had bought this pack at the L.A. Pen Show. I had no idea what I should use it for. I mean don’t get me wrong, I do jot down notes and new ideas for business plans all the time, but I end up typing them on my phone. I don’t ever remember a time when I didn’t have my phone to take notes or record down an idea on the fly. It became an ingrained habit, and after I bought these, I struggled to take one out and use it.


I can tell you the struggle was real. Many times I found myself questioning why I needed the little notebook, but I reluctantly carried it around with me anyway. After 2 weeks of continuous use, I can only say, that I can’t wait till my next pack. This notebook completely surpassed all expectations I had for it. the ruling was crisp and contained a generous amount of space, the paper was nice and bright, and the cover was durable. I find myself thinking “Why didn’t I try these earlier”?. As they say, it’s never too late to make a change.


The particular edition I got was called the Unexposed Edition as stated on the front cover. Out of the many varieties offered by Field Notes, I was completely entranced with this one. The bold color scheme drew my eye, and the reticle graph ruling intrigued me. So far I’ve been really happy with it, but I also can’t wait to try other versions with different ruling.


This is the first page that greets the user when they crack open a fresh notebook. It’s a convenient way to both identify your notebook and it also helps when it comes time to store it. the detailed information regarding the start and end date allow the user to be able to easily access a time frame that they desire.


This ruling, called “reticle graph”, was one of the main reasons I picked this edition to be my first foray into Field Notes. I had never seen anything like it, and it reminded me a lot of Rhodia’s dot grid ruling. The spacing is about the same, but the reticles help me center my writing better, and also give nice guidelines for drawing check-boxes (I draw a lot of these).


Aside from a little feathering with the thicker tip pens, the paper holds up very well to a myriad of mediums. I have no doubt that it can handle almost any gel pen I throw at it. Fountain pens, on the other hand, tend to smear and feather a lot, making it near impossible to use them with this notebook. I tried using an extra fine tip fountain pen to no avail, and also tried all the inks I have. All of them feathered and bled through. However, the fact that it can’t handle fountain pens is but a small drawback that it makes up for by accepting nearly everything else without a hitch.


Overall, I feel that getting a pack of Field Notes was one of the best decisions I’ve made in a while. After strenuous testing, it held up surprisingly well, and surpassed all my expectations. I look forward to getting a few more packs with different rulings and covers. I find myself using it nearly everyday to keep track of all my college work. It took me a while to embrace the concept, but one I did, I don’t see myself going back to typing stuff in my phone in the near future. I highly recommend this to anyone who needs a quality pocket notebook to keep track of their daily activities.

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