I was lucky enough to be given one of the new Dingbats Earth Collection notebooks to try out. In this Dingbats Earth Review you’ll get my personal opinion on this notebook. If you’ve already decided that you will be buying a Dingbats Notebook but haven’t decided between one from the Wildlife Collection or one from the Earth collection, then I’ll be providing you with a comparison to help you make a decision.
Dingbats* Notebooks are hand-made and eco-friendly, with all materials used being biodegradable, vegan and recyclable. The pages are made from paper which is FSC certified meaning that the trees are harvested sustainably and the cover is made from biodegradable faux leather. The Earth range comes in three bright colours – Great Barrier Reef Blue, Serengeti Tangerine and Yusani Green.
Dingbats Earth vs Wildlife Notebook
Dingbats have two ranges of dot grid notebooks out on the market. Their first range is the Wildlife series. I’ve used one of these notebooks before and I’ve reviewed it in this post here:
I enjoyed using the Dingbats Wildlife notebook, but it did have it’s drawbacks, which mainly was the fact that the paper didn’t handle water well. You couldn’t use watercolour on it as it absorbed the water bleed through. Pigment was not very bright either. But I worked around this by using watercolour pencils instead of paint. And that worked very well.
The Dingbats Earth collection notebooks have paper which is coated, making it better able to handle water, which I’ll be testing below.
If you want a quick summary of the differences between the Dingbats Earth and the Wildlife notebook, then have a look at the table below:
Dingbats Earth vs Wildlife Notebook
|Size||A5+ 16x21.5cm||A5+ 16x21.5cm|
|Cover||PU Leather||PU Leather|
|No. of Pages||192||192|
|Perforated Pages||16 micro-perforated pages at the back of the notebook||ALL pages are micro-perforated|
|Index||Yes - 3 pages||No|
|Key||Yes - 2 pages||No|
|Expandable Back Pocket||Yes||Yes|
Dingbats Earth Review
The beautiful lime green faux leather cover looks sturdy and durable and feels lovely and soft. It has a cute little Yasuni design debossed on the front. There is a black elastic closure and a black elastic pen loop. I love the contrast that the black gives to the colour of the notebook. It is slightly larger than both the A5 Leuchtturm and the Scribbles That Matter (STM) brand, but not so large that you wouldn’t want to carry it around.
A Closer Look
The Dingbats Earth collection “highlights fragile ecosystems from around the globe threatened by human activity”. Each different coloured notebook has a different debossed image on the front and on the inside cover is a two page spread of facts and information that corresponds to the cover image.
In my lime-green version with the Yusani design, the inside cover has two pages of facts and information about the Yusani National Park. They’ve packed a lot of information into two pages.
The other two colours of notebook are:
The next page has a lovely green Yasuni design followed by a space to add your name and details in case you ever (god-forbid) lose your bullet journal.
New to the Dingbats Earth Collection
Something new that Dingbats have added to the Earth range is a page with “how to” use your journal. This details how to:
- create your key
- colour your tabs
- mark your pages
“Tabs” refers to the bullet journal hack of edge labels. Dingbats has incorporated this ingenious hack into their journals by providing a Tab Key page, and each page in the notebook now has very faint semi-circles printed down the outside edge so you can easily incorporate this hack into your bullet journal use.
The new Dingbats Earth notebook now has Key and Index pages. And another new feature is the Future Log pages. These are four pages that are very faintly sectioned off into thirds along the edges of the paper. It is very cleverly done as if you don’t want to use these pages as your future log you can very easily ignore this and use the pages however you want.
Dingbats* have listened to what the market wants in a bullet journal notebook. So now the Dingbats Earth collection notebooks come with 2 ribbons in two different colours. As well as that, the pages are now numbered and only the last 16 pages in the notebook are micro-perforated. All the things that I had issue with in the Wildlife Collection have been addressed! Yay!
As with any other great notebook, there is an expandable pocket at the back of the notebook. This is a must in my opinion as I always need somewhere to stash my stickers or stencils.
The Pen Test
The paper in the Dingbats Earth Notebook is 100gsm and coated. It is satiny smooth and is a cream colour, slightly yellower than paper in the Leuchtturm 1917 notebook.
I tested a variety of black pens and brush pens. As you can see, the only pen that bled through to the other side was the Karin Markers Brushpro pen, which I’m not surprised about since the Karin markers are incredibly juicy pens!
What I was surprised about was that the Ecoline Brush pen DID NOT bleed through and these pens are notorious for bleeding through all kinds of journals! I was also very surprised that there was no bleed through with the Kelly Creates Metallic Jewel pens, just slight ghosting. There was barely and ghosting from all the other pens.
The Dingbats Earth notebook has passed the pen test with flying colours!
And Now The Water Test!
To test how the Dingbats Earth Notebook paper holds up to water, I used my Prima Marketing Confections Watercolour and my Winsor & Newton Watercolour paints. I loaded my brush with plenty of water and pigment to get the rich colour onto the pages. As you can see the colours stayed nice and bright.
When using the paints, I did notice that because the paper is coated, the paint/water pools rather than gets absorbed into the paper. Which is probably why the colours stay so bright.
When I turned the page, I was very impressed in the fact that there was no bleed through. The pages were warped, but there was also barely any ghosting. The paper has handled the use of watercolour extremely well.
- the bright vibrant colour of the cover
- the cute debossing on the cover
- the paper quality (amazing!)
- the dot grid
- the pen loop
- the handy back pocket
- two bookmarks
- key, index and future log pages
- new tabs feature
The Not So Great
- the cream coloured pages
Where to Buy
You can purchase the Dingbats Wildlife notebook directly from their website:
Remember to use the code ROSE10 at checkout to get a further 10% off your order!!
Or you can purchase directly from Amazon here.
The Dingbats Earth Notebook is a huge improvement on the Wildlife range of notebooks. The numbered pages and extra bookmark make a difference. As well as the key and index pages for those of us who don’t like to spend time on drawing these up, But not only that the huge improvement in paper quality has made this an amazing notebook. Especially if you like to use watercolour as a medium in your notebooks. The Dingbats Earth notebook will be going at the top of my list for favourite notebooks.
I hope you found this Dingbats Earth Review helpful. If you have any further questions on it, just comment below or send me an email!
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