I got a nice surprise in the mail this week: a free notebook. It came in an order of chocolate bars from Miss Choco.
(A brief explanation: I have been forced to order chocolate through the mail because I am allergic to vanilla and —slightly— to peanuts. Almost all chocolate has vanilla in it. Most of it ‘may contain peanuts’. Local stores keep discontinuing chocolate that I can eat and that I actually want to eat. In England I can buy a cheap 85% bar of vanilla-free, non-peanut-exposed chocolate at Tesco, but I can no longer find anything similar in Saskatoon. I now mail order chocolate from Montreal!)
Part of the maintenance of cocoa trees involves pruning. The paper in the notebook is made from a combination of the bark from the stripped branches and post-consumer waste paper. You can read about the process here.
Inside, the notebook has some pages at the front for recording chocolate tastings.
This is not just silliness: David and I bought five different chocolate bars in our first order and recorded our responses so that we could determine which we liked best. (It’s hard to remember what the chocolate you ate three weeks ago tasted like, especially at our age.)
The rest of the notebook is blank.
The machine-made paper is a lovely warm beige, quite thin (I would guess about 75 gsm), and has a distinct right side (smooth) and wrong side (mould marks).
There was show-through on the backs of the printed pages, so I did a test with some writing implements I happened to have on my work table.
The mechanical pencil lead tended to dig into the surface of the paper. Both the gel pen and the uniball worked well, with only a bit of bleed when the pen tip rested at the end of a line. There was no show through from the inks.
It’s nice to think that the cocoa trees are being used to produce environmentally-friendly paper as well as chocolate! Perhaps I will have to order some paper by mail.
In other book arts news:
My complimentary copy of Bound and Lettered also arrived in the mail this week. I received it because the article I wrote on Pablo Lehmann (originally published in Book Arts Canada) was reprinted in the March issue.
You can look at a preview of the issue here, or order your very own copy here. I was offered payment for the article, but I had them convert it to a subscription so I will get nice surprises by post on a regular basis. (John Neal also produces Letter Arts Review, another wonderful publication.)
And in knitting this week:
Another scarf/shawl. Not sure who this one is for.
One of our hand-knit dishcloths got a knife cut in it this week, so I knitted up a new supply. The yarn is the cheap cotton stuff from the dollar store.
I quite like the yarn, and the dollar store had some in grey this week, so I am thinking of knitting a summer shawl with it.
Perhaps I will aim for something like this.