Field Notes

Entries from April 2008

Field Notes In Action:

Frank Chimero uses Field Notes

April 29th, 2008 by Aaron

Figuring Illinois Out

Frank Chimero uses Field Notes. The proof comes to us in the form of a digital image showing us some of his thinking behind the Illinois offering of his amazing, “The States” illustration series. Don’t even think about not “checking out what this guy is about.” He’s got a case of Sears Tower-sized talent, we’re proud to provide the graph paper to keep it all on the up and up. Thanks, Frank. Keep up the good work.

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Field Notes In Action:

Don’t Wash ‘Em

April 24th, 2008 by Aaron

Field Notes through the wash…

Take Jared’s word for it: You don’t want to wash your Field Notes.

This pile of drying slop was sent up from one Jared Eberhardt of Long Beach, Calif. An “idea man” in his own right, he accidentally left his latest Field Notes memo book in the back pocket of his jeans and threw them into the wash.

So here’s a shot of him “drying out his ideas.” We hope everything works out, man, and thanks for yer support.

Our take on it: Don’t wash yer clothes. “Proper hygiene” is overrated.

(Addendum from Bryan) Andy at Pencil Things had a little bit better luck when he accidentally washed his Field Notes. We’ll do some more testing over the weekend, but for now, we still don’t recommend it.

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Field Notes In Action:

Field Notes Youth

April 23rd, 2008 by Bryan Bedell

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If you’re in the habit of carrying around a memo book and a pen, you know it’s like carrying a very lightweight laptop computer, minus the internet. (It does have some built in games, I’ll cover that in my next post.) What I’m getting to is, Field Notes, like a laptop, makes a great babysitter. A couple hours into a long car trip, after someone left $120 worth of Disney DVDs in the gravel outside a restaurant in Indiana (I’m not blaming anyone, I’m just saying…), you’ll be grateful to still have a way of entertaining a 4-year-old in the back seat. Above, you can see my daughter’s vivid and disturbing imagination translated to paper. I’m pretty sure that’s some sort of evil princess, and that’s girl-frankenstein on the right. [Read more →]

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Vintage Memo Book Archive:

Armour Fertilizers

April 22nd, 2008 by Bryan Bedell

More Farmers use Armour FertilizersWhen we started this whole mess, Aaron said he’d been collecting farm notebooks for a while, and Jim and I figured he had a dozen or two, never realizing that the guy has “piles and piles” of these things. While he organizes his thoughts and collection, Here’s another of the scans he originally sent us, a three-color, 5.75″x3″ beauty from Armour Fertilizers. Most of these companies put out a new memo book annually, often with similar-but-distinctive covers from year to year, this one’s from 1957. I like the slogan “More Farmers use…” not only because it’s capitalized strangely, but because it implies popularity without any actual comparison. Do more Farmers use ARMOUR than other brands? Or do more Farmers use it than the number of Farmers that used it last year? Or do more Farmers use it than Orthopedic Surgeons? Who knows? But I’m on my way to Sal’s Farm Supply to pick up some Vertagreen, whatever it is.

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Field News:

An amateur economist review

April 22nd, 2008 by Bryan Bedell

Chris Meisenzahl of Amateur Economist wrote a detailed review of our Field Notes brand memo books, including handwriting samples with various fountain pens. His summary:

In short, grab a few of these, they’re affordable, solid (3 staples), take fountain pen ink well, and can easily slip into a shirt, jacket, or jeans back pocket.

Chris is also a contributor to the mighty Notebookism, they’ve very kindly mentioned us a few times. We’re pretty new to the scene, so it feels great to be getting such positive feedback from the notebook/stationery/ephemera crowd.

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Field News:

Stop talking about us!

April 21st, 2008 by Bryan Bedell

OK, this internet hype is getting old. Steve Makofsky, a yahoo at Yahoo!, mentioned us in a recent post on The Furry Goat, and promised an in-depth review once he got ‘em. We’re holding him to that. Cpaig recommended our Field Notes on ThisNext, and The Harvard Bloggers like our background. (We like their vintage computer photos for our 72° project.) And last but not least, Mike Chambers tumblr’ed us. Is that a word?.

Stay tuned, I gave the 4-year-old a Field Notes memo book during a long car trip this weekend, I’ll post the glorious results later today. UPDATE: Tomorrow. Mrs. Field Notes cleaned the car and presumably took them into the house.

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Field News:

Shout out it’s Friday

April 18th, 2008 by Bryan Bedell

Thanks for the links Uncrate; Hotlinks’ Typography section; and especially hardcore M*lesk*ne fans Scription (Patrick added our RSS feed to his blog); and Black Cover, who wondered aloud if we’d ever wrap our notebooks in black oilcloth. The answer is “probably not,” but we’d love to be reviewed in half the detail you’ve given your other subjects, give us a ring.

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Field News:

Ag Cred?

April 15th, 2008 by Bryan Bedell

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Just in case you ever find yourself doubting the authenticity of Field Notes, or wondering “Those hipster urban beardos and their Vespas and Hüsker Dü LPs, what do they know about ‘the vanishing subgenre of agricultural memo books?’”:

Here at Coudal, we’re kind of quiet about our client work, but just in the name of agricultural credibility, let it be known we’ve been working for a farm for a few years now. Sure, it’s a farm with a website and an epic cattle auction at the Astros’ stadium in Houston (which is tomorrow, actually, if you’re in the greater Houston area we could maybe get you on the guest list), and sure, none of us has actually set foot on said farm, but we know more about cattle breeding and animal husbandry than you’d ever want to, trust us.

Have you ever had to explain a .pdf file to a silo painter or saddlemaker? We rest our case.

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Field News:

Just second hand news, yeah

April 15th, 2008 by Bryan Bedell

That headline’s got nothing to do with anything, I just have Fleetwood Mac stuck in my head. Which, let’s be clear, is not a Field Notes endorsement of Fleetwood Mac. Though they’re not the worst or anything. They’ve got a few good songs, and they were probably fun to hang out with back in the day. And there’s always the Olde English pre-California Fleetwood Mac, with rad stuff like this.

Bill Dey with Field NotesAnyways, on to the business of getting notebooks into the hands of consumers! (BTW, you’re looking very lovely today, consumer!) We got our first podcast mention from Bill Deys who podcasts from his car, in the dark. That would be totally illegal here in Chicago, but it’s totally cool if you’re in freedom-loving Canada. Bill takes his eyes off the road to show off his new Field Notes, but there doesn’t seem to be much traffic in Canada, so it’s all good. Thanks, Bill!

We also got a shoutout from Shumyla in Memphis. We love you too, Shumyla, even though you didn’t break any traffic laws to hype the F-N.

Thanks to Bill, Shumyla, and the rest of our friends, we’re hanging tight at a respectable just-under-10% in Lifehacker’s Battle of the Designer Notebooks. We will be perfectly happy to settle for 10% of the global memo book market. We’ve got no clue when the contest ends, or what we win when it’s over. Surely something really cool.

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Field News:

Battle of the Designer Notebooks

April 10th, 2008 by Bryan Bedell

Lifehacker’s Battle of the Designer Notebooks pitches us against some competitors in a popular vote. We’re perfectly comfortable being whomped by a brand that dates back a hundred years* that was recently sold for 60 million euros, but second place would be nice, if you lovely Field Noters don’t mind throwing us a vote.

*or, to be more precise, ” 10 years.

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