(locus communis) I have an almost insatiable need for notebooks. Imagine my delight, then, when upon being sent on an errand to Kmart by the domestic authority I unexpectedly came upon a supply of stylish yet understated notebooks like the one pictured (sans the pen holder).
Aficionados will recognise it from the black cover, ribbon place marker and elastic holder as a faux Moleskine, an approximation of a sought after journal marketed by an Italian company and purportedly based on notebooks used by famous authors and artists in the late 19th and early 20th century Europe, including Vincent van Gogh and Ernest Hemingway. Considerations of style and provenance aside, these are eminently functional objects.
In the hand, the difference between the faux and a real example is indiscernible apart from the finer points of the finishing, which are of no great import to me. Perhaps that ought not to surprise, though, as both this notebook and Moleskines are made in China, probably at the same factory!
The biggest difference, though, is price. When I last looked at a large bookshop in Brisbane I balked at buying a black covered Moleskine journal for $30.00; this one set me back the princely sum of $3.00. Given that Kmart are still making a profit at this modest price, the mark-up on Moleskines must be something incredible!
Commonplace note takers, check out your local Kmart (if you dare!) ;-)