Not Your Average Chick

Stationery Enthusiast & Mental Wellness Advocate

Clairefontaine review-

Hey chicks!

As you may remember,  I received my Clairefontaine notebook.  I insanely spent $11.00 to have it shipped from France.  Had I ordered more than one item I maybe could have justified spending that amount on shipping but in the moment, I didn’t think of that.  I know not to make that mistake again!  Now, on to my second notebook review.

I ordered the Polypro Calligraphe notebook with a translucent purple cover.  The front and back are plastic material that is see-through, purple see-through.  The binding is staple binding and the paper is Seyes ruling, French ruling.  I read about the paper a while back and it caught my interest.  They do offer other types of ruling.

Clairefontaine Notebook Review-NYAC

The measurements are 21 x 29.  It is larger than your standard notebook,  it is an A2.  I like that because it gives me more room on each page.  There are 96 pages in this particular notebook.

On the cover, the style of the notebook is written at the bottom while the rest of the front cover is bare.  I like that because it allows you to see the first page of the notebook through the cover.  I will not be using the first sheet in case you were wondering.  The cover is thin and light plastic.  I will have to test its durability.  I am not as rough on notebooks as I have been in the past.  Generally, my notebooks stay placed in a crate in my room only to be brought out when I use them and then returned to their “home”.

The paper weighs, the GSM, 90lbs.  Remember the higher the number, the thicker the paper.  This paper is a bit thicker than copy paper but isn’t as thick as cardstock.  There are no perforated edges which I prefer.  Tearing out pages is not an option because it would leave my notebook looking messy.  I can not have a messy notebook, no.  🙂


Next, the ruling.  I absolutely love the ruling.  It reminds me of the days when I played school.  My Ma bought me a grade book to write my students name and grades in.  I was very serious about playing school so you can imagine the nostalgia.  It is a mix of lined and graph paper with rectangle shaped spaces at the top and bottom of the page vertically and horizontally down the side of the page.  The lines are purple and in between the purple lines are tiny blue lines.  The margin line is red.  I do not know if all Seyes ruling is purple or if this is the case because my cover is purple but purple is one of my favorite colors.  Needless to say, I am in love with this style of ruling!  The texture of the paper is smooth, almost soft.

Now for the pen test.  I used an off-brand marker pen, a Sharpie fine point marker pen, and a Papermate marker.  It is rare for me to use a regular ink pen.  My first choice is marker pens.  There was a teensy amount of ghosting, seen on the back page, with the Papermate.  I colored in a heart using the Sharpie and that also faintly shown through.  Not enough to stop me from writing on that page.  I made my letters at the top of the page wider by coloring them in using the Papermate and that is noticeable but not so bad again that I wouldn’t write on the back of the page.  I will stick to using the fine point marker pens in this notebook.


The back of the page lists the details of the notebook.  The measurements, style and some mumbo-jumbo in French, which I cannot read.  😦  That’s ok though because I’m not required to read to use the notebook  😉  Overall I can tell the quality of the paper is good because it doesn’t feel grainy.  I really enjoy the ruling.  It has a girlie appearance which I like, of course.  But I will be honest,  I wish the cover and back were more sturdy.  It is flimsy, plastic material.  If I were using for college it would most likely get damaged.  The company offers a ton of other styles.  I choose this one because of the purple but I wouldn’t have chosen it in a store.  That isn’t the fault of the companies.

For this particular notebook, I would rate it a 7.  On the back cover, there is a tree and I assume that means recycled materials or environmentally friendly so that contributes to the score.  The ruling accounts for 5 of 7 points.  I would purchase a different style and may do so in the near future but for now, I am not pushing people down to get one.

Do you own a Clairefontaine in a different style?  What do you like about it?  Would you purchase one based on my review?

* purchased with my own money




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