My Rhodia stationery

I use notepads all the time - every day. I always carry one with me. (Except for those miserable moments when I have forgetten and end up having to scribble on the back of a receipt or used envelope). Notepads are essential for reviewing shows and exhibitions. For a little while I tried to write notes on my smartphone but the screen glare can be distracting and the battery inevitably runs down. It's still quicker to write longhand than to fiddle around with an onscreen keyboard.

Imagine my delight (squeee!) when the lovely folk at bureau direct got in contact to tell me about My Rhodia. It's a premium French brand of notepads, notebooks and other stationery items like pencils and desktop accessories.

They sent me a Rhodia Essentials box (see my photos on Female Arts facebook ). The yellow lidded box itself looks like a giant notebook and inside are two 10cm notepads (absolutely brilliant compact size for my everyday handbag), one 21cm tall and thin notepad (still handbag size) and one 21cm by 14cm wide notebook. With a couple of pencils thrown in.

The yellow notepad covers feels tough yet light, slightly waxy and good quality. When you open the notepad the cover folds back on itself which makes it so easy to keep the pages open in place, without the risk of any paper accidentally tearing out. All the paper is neatly stapled in, no funny plastic wire spiral at the top or side, no mess, no fuss.

A surprise was that each piece of paper in the My Rhodia Essentials box is grided, reminiscent of grid paper, like those school days of maths and drawing shapes. I wondered how I would get on with it? since I am so used to writing on lined paper. Actually, I got on fine! I use it like lined paper and no longer notice the grids.

I was also sent a My Rhodia dotpad (21cm tall by 14cm wide) which instead of lines - instead of grids, has dots! The benefit of this is that your eye can still see a 'line' to write on. You can write a nice letter in this dotpad. But you could also use it for drawing on. I wonder if the My Rhodia stationery is used for technical drawing or for art. It's worth looking into if you like the sound of it.

As for price, the My Rhodia Essentials box is £10 (which contains the notebook, three notepads and two pencils) I think it is good value for money and would make a nice gift for a friend.

One more thing. I've used moleskin a lot (which is also great quality). But it is quite heavy. And the weight of my moleskin notebook has put me off carrying it in my handbag. The My Rhodia compact notepads are perfect - just the right size and lightness. I'm always getting sore shoulders but it doesn't hurt to carry one of these around.

Take a look:

(c) Wendy Thomson 2015 (@topgirls)

Disclaimer: Opinions all mine. I was not paid for my opinions, just sent some lovely stationery to try out. We like notepads at Female Arts we do.