Back Pocket notebooks are British notebooks that you can learn from. We’ve been selling their top-notch notebooks for a while now, so we thought we’d share with you a little bit about the ethos of the company and why we love them so much.
Who are Back Pocket?
Back Pocket are an innovative UK company who still wholly back the belief that notebooks should be just as important to you as your mobile phone. Sure your mobile can get you an answer about anything in seconds, it can connect you with a friend, family member or stranger just as quickly. You can play games on it, you can draw on it, catch up with news on it, or watch TV and films on it. But it doesn't have, and likely never will have, the analogue benefits of a notebook.
The humble notebook doesn’t need wifi to work, no batteries or power source, it can be used anytime, anywhere. A notebook will never disturb you. With a notebook you call the shots and you use it when you need it. Company owner, Justin Avery, doesn't just want to sell notebooks though, he has created an educational, analogue tool that is genuinely set out to rival digital products that can weigh us down. Back Pocket notebooks are designed to be synonymous with your mobile phone.
The brains behind the idea
London-based Back Pocket evolved out of a conversation between company founder, Justin Avery and his wife, Laura. By day he works as a digital consultant, specialising in Responsive Web Design. And it was his need to record and communicate his ideas that led to the birth of Back Pocket.
As a big thinker with thoughts continually whirring and needing to spill out onto something, he would often have a notebook of some sort in his back pocket to record his best ideas. When he told his wife that he wanted to create a set of responsive design focussed notebooks to fit into a back pocket she quickly suggested that of course, he must call those notebooks Back Pocket notebooks. And so Back Pocket was born.
Reviewing Back Pocket Notebooks
So what you really want to know is what the notebooks are like, right?
As Justin says, “Back pocket notebooks were created so you always remember your best ideas”. But they’re not just a handy tool for jotting down your thoughts. They also serve to help you learn. That’s why each notebook contains facts and information about the various subjects they feature.
Back Pocket’s current collections include: cricket, guitar, responsive web design, SpaceX and plain Kraft notebooks.
Each notebook is 100% made in the UK using the best quality 120gsm paper stock and staple bound with 300gsm covers.
Back Pocket Responsive Web Design Notebooks
It all began with an idea about combining Justin’s love of analogue with his expertise in Responsive Web Design. Each of the 3 notebooks covers one of the three tenets of Responsive Web Design: Fluid Grids, Flexible Media, and Media Queries (sounds impressive right?).
I won’t pretend to know much about Responsive Web Design myself, but the idea behind the notebooks is to enable those in the know to quickly share ideas about responsive design with those of us who are less in the know. They’re a simple tool to convey design ideas to colleagues and clients, featuring brief definitions and quotes from responsive web design gurus.
What I do know though, is that the paper quality is top notch. Works great with cartridge pens and even heavy ink, with little to no ghosting or bleeding... The opportunity to impress your friends with your responsive web design knowledge is an extra bonus!
Back Pocket Guitar Notebooks
Now music, that’s something that sits a little more comfortably within my terms of reference. I’m not a ukulelele maestro myself, but these notebooks are a great place to start. Each set of three includes a guitar notebook, a ukelele notebook and an electric guitar notebook. They feature an overview of the types of guitars available within the range, as well as chord charts (for ukeleles and acoustic guitars) or scales (for electric guitars).
They’re made using the same high quality paper used in all Back Pocket notebooks - check out this review from The Well Appointed Desk to see how the paper performs. But what we really love about the Guitar notebooks is the striking, colourful design. You don’t have to be musical to appreciate these notebooks.The vibrant orange, raspberry and mustard covers, coupled with simple, bold illustrations make them pleasing to the eye.
They’re also pretty handy as a quick reference for novice guitar players when it comes to remembering how to play chords. Perhaps I’ll use them to write my next global best-selling platinum pop ballad. Watch out Ed Sheeran, here I come!
Back Pocket SpaceX Notebooks
We’ve been selling Back Pocket’s SpaceX notebooks for a while now, and our love for them is yet to fade. The colourful cover illustrations are inspired by retro tourist postcards of days gone by. The twist? These are tourist postcards from Mars.
The cover designs were commissioned by Elon Musk of the SpaceX program, which was founded with the ultimate goal to enable humans to live on other planets. Each cover presents a future vision of life on different areas of Mars: Phobos & Deimos (Mars’ two moons), Valles Marineris (the solar system’s largest volcano) and Olympus Mons (a huge canyon on Mars that dwarfs Arizona’s Grand Canyon).
Inside the front cover of each of the notebooks you can find a scientific overview and facts relating to its cover. The inside back cover lists universal constants – handy potential pub quiz knowledge right there.
And of course, they’re the usual high quality 120 gsm paper stock with 36 pages of light grey cross grid ruling. Check out the SpaceX notebook review by Pens!Paper!Pencils! for more info about how the paper performs with different inks as well as some great images of the notebooks.
Back Pocket Cricket Notebooks
Back Pocket’s cricket notebooks come in a pack of two and are perfect for any cricket fanatic. The cover design is a rich grass green colour and features a graphic outlining the many different fielding positions.
There are two variants on the notebooks and you can choose to have one of each or both the same. The first notebook is the standard cricket notebook, whereas the second notebook celebrates the long-standing cricket rivalry between Australia and England: The Ashes. The latter features the flags of England and Oz on the back page underneath a cheeky news article printed in 1882 announcing the end of English Cricket:
An Affectionate Remembrance
which died at the Oval
29th August, 1882
Deeply lamented by a large circle of sorrowing friends and acquaintances.
R. I. P
N.B. — The body will be cremated and the ashes taken to Australia.
As with all Back Pocket notebooks the inside covers are filled with facts and information, in the case of the cricket notebooks you can learn all about the ten methods of dismissal in the game of cricket.
Back Pocket Plain Kraft Notebook
Described by some as ‘the perfect notebook’, here is a pocket notebook to rival Field Notes.
It’s a simple, but high-quality and robust little notebook to slip into your back pocket. Coming in sets of 3, each notebook contains 36 pages of 120gsm paper featuring a helpful but unobtrusive cross grid.
Check-out Cathryn Worrell’s review of Back Pocket Kraft notebooks over on her blog to see how the paper fares with fine liners, felt tips, markers, brush pens, watercolours and gouache.
We know there is so much more to come from Back Pocket, and judging on feedback so far, there's every reason to be excited about the innovative and detailed designs from this exciting UK-based stationery company.