Tsubame Notebooks (Set of 2)

$ 10.00

So beloved and ubiquitous is the Tsubame notebook that practically all Japanese have held this notebook in their hands at one point in their lives. The iconic and dignified design of the cover dates to 1947, and despite a few minor alterations over the course of the past 65 years, the basic design elements remain essentially unchanged.

The use of neutral "foolscap" paper in this top quality notebook is its most important feature. Foolscap paper has a fine surface that guarantees a superior writing experience as the pen literally glides across the surface; yet the ink will not blot or show through to the other side of the page. This is said to be the best paper available to those writing with a fountain pen. Tsubame pages are lightly ruled with hand drawn lines and each notebook is hand bound with the utmost care and attention to detail.

Made in Japan. Sold as a set of two.


Small notebook measures 6" x 8". Large Notebook measures 7" x 10".


Tsubame Note Co. Ltd. has been producing fine paper and notebooks in Japan since 1947. The foolscap paper is among the highest quality paper available for fountain pens. In Japan, it is referred to simply as "furusu" paper. It is unique in its ability to remain opaque when written on. Simply put, the degree to which your writing bleeds or shows through to the back side of the page is almost nil. Through this one innovative feature, the Tsubame have garnered legions of loyal fans.

The Tsubame's parent company (The LIFE Paper Co.), has stuck to hand-made production methods insisting that those techniques alone will result in the highest quality Japanese stationery available. Yasuhiro Saito founded the company in 1946 after working as an apprentice to a paper manufacturer. In 1949, after a period of strict wartime rationing, the production of paper products resumed under the brand name 'LIFE'. New products were quickly developed and were peddled on the streets by bicycle and bicycle drawn carts before eventually being sold to department stores and other retailers. LIFE is renowned in Japan for the very high quality of its paper and bindings. LIFE’s products are made in small workshops around Tokyo allowing a degree of sensitivity and care that is difficult to imagine – even the glue is changed daily to accommodate changes in humidity and keep a consistent sound to the page as it tears from the book.

Both Tsubame and the LIFE brand have had many loyal fan through the years. The famous director Akira Kurosawa used Tsubame notebooks for his own film script notes, and French fashion deisgner Agnes B ordered some bespoke notebooks about 20 years ago.

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