Saturday, November 12, 2011

Overdue Rhodia Webbie Review

So, I can't say I don't win anything anymore! A few months back (I know, shame on me!) I won a Rhodia Web Notebook on Rhodia Drive. I was thrilled! I had been wanting to try Rhodia for some time, but had not yet ordered one.

Rhodia "Webbies" as they are affectionately known, come in two colors--orange and black--with corresponding end papers, elastic closures (which I was too dumb to photograph), ribbon markers, and back pockets. They come with your choice of blank, lined, or dot grid paper, and in two sizes: 3.5" x 5.5" and 5.5" x 8.25" (mine is the larger size). Rhodia paper is 90gsm, ultra smooth and FABULOUS as only Exaclair paper can be.

Rhodia Webnotebook paper is "ink resistant" like Clairefontaine paper, which means that the ink you use will not feather or bleed--and is therefore PERFECT for fountain pen use!  In fact, there is ZERO feathering or bleed through on any of my pages, and I've tried close to 50 inks, including Noodler's Ink, which is sometimes very wet. (I wasn't smart enough to photograph the back of one of the pages for you, but mine is not the only review online by any means, and most of them are clearly better at this than I am and show you that there is only minimal show through, no bleed through).

I chose the orange cover, and dot grid paper. Here is that brilliant orange cover:

This picture, of course is not exactly the right color--this is a bit too washed out--the notebook is a true orange orange. It is also soft; almost like leather, and a bit "bendy", if you will.  For some odd reason, I didn't take a photo of the orange elastic strap, but you can see a better picture here and here.

On the front inside, the end papers are also orange:

Then, in this notebook, like many others, the first page is actually glued to the end paper, so it's not as usable as the others, although I've managed to not waste any of this delicious paper!

As you can see, there is an orange ribbon marker, and I'm using this notebook for pen/ink sampling. Which brings me to my next point--this is a bit weird.  The color of Rhodia Webbie paper is odd--not an "ivory" in the usual sense of the word--but almost "apricot".  It makes inks look very very different than they would on a true ivory or white paper.

Now, you may find that this does not bother you. It bothers me. You see, I prefer bright white paper--all the time. However, since Quo Vadis quit making the Habana with bright white paper, there is an unfortunate dearth of quality notebooks with white paper. This, I think, is a travesty (and a brilliant market niche gap if you happen to make fanfreakingtastic notebooks with fanfreakingtastic white paper). 
Clairefontaine does make a journal type notebook, but not of this quality. 

Now, with that being said, let me reiterate that Rhodia paper, like all of Exaclair's paper product line, is SUPERB, and I will continue to use Webbies. However, I am going to have to choose ink carefully, and also try my inks on regular Clairefontaine notebooks to see the "true" color of the ink.

Any hoo, here's the back pocket:

Right now mine is full of Goulet Pen Company bookmarks and stickers, a Noodler's Ink Flex Nib Creaper pen instruction sheet, and Karen at Exaclair's business card.

I love this notebook, and thank you, thank you, thank you Exaclair and Rhodia Drive for giving me the opportunity to win one! This is my "journal of choice", and when I finish my dratted Piccadilly notebook, I'll be getting a Webbie to replace it. If you're in the market for a new notebook, I highly recommend a Webbie! They can be purchased from my favorite pen, paper and ink retailer The Goulet Pen Company, and while you're there you can get some ink and a pen to go with it. Enjoy!!


  1. Rori, hi.

    I like the blog name and the post. These guys should sell Filo inserts, don't you think? I mean, they could manufacture 56g cream film inserts and they would break the bank, would they not? ;)


  2. There was an obvious typo by our beloved Mac autocorrection feature. I meant Filo inserts ...

  3. @gdigesu Thanks! Yes, they should definitely work with Filofax! Odd, since Filofax and Lamy (fountain pens and ink) are the same company...

  4. I love Webbies! Glad you've now tried one!

  5. Nice review. I'm going to order a Webbie of my own soon.
    You mention the paper appearing slightly "apricot" as opposed to ivory. How does it look against the black cover? Is the vibrant orange cover and end paper making the colour appear more orange than it really is?

  6. @Keith I thought maybe that was it too, but my mom has a black one, and no--the paper is still a bit "apricot-ish". Not a hideous color, just not ivory for sure!
    Thanks for reading and commenting, glad to have you here! :D