DIY Every Day Carry Notebook

by Michael Smith (Veshengro)

Note_taking-system1_smlPen and notebook come in very handy, and not just for writers and journalists, many times during the course of the day. Lugging, however, an expensive Moleskine or Leuchtturm 1917 notebook around in all conditions and just for jotting down fragments of thoughts and idea, and such, may not be your idea of fun. It certainly is not mine.

Personally I have no wish and possibility to carry a large notebook around with me on a daily basis. This is only feasible if I carry my map case or such. And thus my notebook has to fit into a hip pocket or a shirt pocket and in that case anything larger than A6 is just too big.

There are a number of ways to make a (small) notebook for your daily carry – and making is definitely better than buying here – and it does not even have to be a notebook in the “normal” sense. It can be a number of 3x5 index cards in a wallet, for instance, especially when you just make notes that are written up into articles or what-have-you later.

The “Hipster PDA” is one option for using 3x5 index cards, as it is simply a number of those cards clipped together by means of a small Bulldog clip. Or one could, obviously, also carry those cards in a leather wallet specifically made for them.

This system of note taking does require index cards, however, in both cases which, with the aid of a guillotine (paper trimmer) can, though, be recycled out of any waste card stock, such as cereal boxes, or such.

If you want to use “ordinary” paper, and especially the green option of using waste office paper, there are several options for DIY EDC notebooks.

The most appropriate paper size for an EDC notebook are A6 and the smaller A7 with A& being very small and thus fitting easily into a shirt pocket. A6 is the size that just about comfortably fits – sort of – into a hip pocket of jeans and most other pants.

Making your own EDC notebook allows you to create a note taking system that is just right for you and your requirements in a way that is, more often than not, not the case with anything that can be bought “off the shelf”.

I have played around with the Hipster PDA and other systems using 3x5 index cards but found the best solution – for me – in folding an A4 sheet of paper in such a way as to create eight pages of A7 and I then carry five of those folded and creased sheets in a wallet that I made for it, giving me 20 pages to write on, carried in a small space.

To make those sheets you fold a sheet of A4 in half, to A5. Then you bring the open edges over to the crease and thus create an A7 wide and A6 long piece of paper. This you then fold upwards bringing the open edges together to form and A7 size pad. You then make good the creases by using a “bone” and put a number of those into a designated wallet and you have a note taking system that can go with you anywhere; well, almost, as diving into water with it might leave you with rather soggy notes.

I found this the solution for my purpose but I also make notebooks in other ways, reusing waste office paper, but for every day carry the leather wallet with five creased sheets, giving me, as said, twenty pages A7, is just right. And I also always have a good supply of spare pages ready made up to go into the wallet when the completed ones come out.

It is definitely the system that works for me but there are also, for sure, other ways of making your own EDC notebook and one option if found here on Instructables.

© 2014