Galen Leather Field Notes Cover / Wallet
A special thanks goes out to Zeynep from Galen Leather who contacted me and provided this leather pocket notebook cover for this review along with another that will be reviewed soon. Although this was provided to me at no charge, I was not paid to endorse this product. My opinions are my own.
For this review, we will be looking at the No. 44 Field Notes Cover in brown. I was also sent a No. 55 in Navy blue which will be reviewed separately. When both covers arrived I did a first impressions video on Periscope. I uploaded the video to YouTube and I have posted it here for your convenience.
Please note that while I am technically savvy, this was my first Periscope broadcast and I noted some really bad mistakes in the video (vertical vs. horizontal camera positioning, long silence at the beginning, etc). I might do more videos but I really need to polish them up before posting. 🙂 I have to start somewhere.
I do not usually focus on packaging in my reviews but I was impressed with the packaging/presentation that I need to mention it. The cover came in a cardboard box imprinted with the company name that is simple but elegant with a vintage feel. Inside the box came the leather cover wrapped in a belly band. There was also a small card with a glass bead charm or Turkish “evil eye” talisman on a card with information about it. When I first read it, I must admit that it creeped me out. Something must have been lost in translation. I researched it further and noted its true meaning and Galen Leather’s intentions by including it. As for the significance to me, it’s a cool looking glass bead. 🙂
There is also a card that included care instructions, the name of the person who made the cover and the date it was made. In my case, Yusuf made both covers. A little bit of information on the leather itself is also included. Overall I liked the presentation very much and enjoyed the attention given to detail.
The level of attention given to the packaging carries over to the actual cover. The cover is hand stitched in vegetable tanned leather that is sourced locally in Istanbul Turkey. The brown leather is very soft and flops around under its own weight. Adding a notebook stiffens it up a little but it still has the feel of broken in leather. The supple leather is very different from all the other covers I have. I must admit it was a bit of a turn off at first. After using it for a couple of weeks, the cover grew on me and I enjoy using it as my wallet/checkbook/notebook cover. The cover will take any pocket notebook which means a notebook that is sized 3.5″x5.5″ (9 cm x 14 cm). The open dimensions are 8.81″x 5.90″ (22 cm x 15 cm), closed dimensions are 4.33″ x 5.90″ (11 cm x 15 cm). The cover is hand stitched with waxed thread and has beveled/burnished edges. The stitching looks precise and sturdy. The burnishing is minimal but I think burnishing done by Echo Six Designs has spoiled me.
The wallet side of the cover easily holds 2 cards per pocket and there is an additional large pocket behind the two pockets on the left side of the cover. You could probably fit three cards in each pocket but you will be stretching the leather at that point. Not something I like to do. On the left side you will also find a pen loop. It is stitched in such a position that some pens stick out of the cover when placed in the loop. It is my only sticking point with this cover. I like the pens to be less exposed when in the cover. For me, this means that I have to use pens that have the clip towards the top of the pen. Some pens like the Ti2 Design Techliner Shorty sticks out too far, for my taste.
The D*Caston Rocket fits the cover perfectly. You can easily fit 2 notebooks in the cover but I prefer just one as it gets a little bulky with two.
I have quite a few pocket notebook covers and I have to say the Galen Leather No. 44 ranks in my top 3 very easily. They are competitively priced at $44 without personalization and $49 with up to 3 letters (as of June 2016). I do not have any other cover that can function as a wallet out of the box. I think you will be seeing Galen Leather becoming more prominent in the leather cover market. If I lost this cover today, I would be looking to place an order for another one ASAP.
Thank you for reading.
“Where the pen is mightier than the sword, but a light saber?”