I love my medium sized notepad holder. Its the perfect size, look beautiful, takes a beating, and will only improve with age.
So why not 5 stars? The two loose paper folders on the left side do not have enough space inside them to insert a piece of paper. Dimensionally they are fine, but the leather is sewn so tightly together you can't get loose paper all the way in. My solution has been to inset any loose papers into a manila folder, as the folder has enough strength that it can be pushed all the way in. Not ideal, but it works.
It would be great in a future update if Saddleback were to add a small spacer strip of leather along the left and bottom edges to fix this problem.
Knowing this, would I still but it? Absolutely.
I own multiple pieces of Saddleback Leather and truly love them all.. I was in need of a new Notepad Holder, but was a bit hesitant to drop $148... I saw a DCB Medium Notepad Holder on Dave’s Deals at 25% off, so grabbed it understanding it might have a defect, but wouldn’t affect it’s use and performance.. Wow !! Received the Notepad Holder today and it is beautiful.. The “defect” is subtly obvious.. There are beautiful stretch marks that reach across the entire front and back of the Notepad Holder.. What great character.. I couldn’t have hand picked a piece with more character and beauty of the hide… Perfect
At first I was hesitant to fork out the dough for the large notebook cover. I love my saddleback messenger bag, but I had a hard time justifying the cost of something that seemed like such a basic item.
But, I had some extra money, so I figured I'd give it a try.
Let me tell you- from the outset, I was thrilled with the purchase. This thing is heavy duty, and very well padded. It is a HUGE upgrade over the office supply store pleather portfolio I was using prior to this. The pigskin lining on mine is exceptionally soft, and I sometimes find myself running my fingers over it just because I love how it feels. Just like my messenger bag, it fills the room with that leather smell.
I am very involved in a voluntary bible education work that requires me to walk for miles in a day in all sorts of weather. While my old lesser quality portfolio did do the job of keeping my literature dry and allowing me to take my essential notes, it had never brought me the joy of ownership this item has.
I just received the size Small Notepad Holder. I have never handled such high quality leather - it is better than the leather used in my Coach brand portfolio.
I knew that the leather would be thick. I thought it would be so thick that it would arrive stiff and would constantly be flipping itself open until broken in to the closed position. In fact, I was thinking I might have to use some heavy books for the nights, and rubber bands during the day to keep it in the closed position during a break in period. However, the Saddleback product was stored and shipped in a closed position, and I was delighted to find upon opening the package that this means that SB Notepad Holder is broken in well enough to maintain a closed position when closed.
From looking at the video of this product prior to purchase, a small tablet was placed inside the rear left pocket. My Kindle Voyage also fits inside this left pocket. However, there is also a small pocket on the left front side that looks like a double-wide business card holder. I was very surprised to discover that my Kindle Voyage also fits inside this front left small pocket, but is not as secure - the pocket is wide enough, but is only about 3 inches tall. Because the fit is snug, I actually am not concerned that the Voyage will fall out of the pocket - it takes a firm pull to get it out. In this front pocket, it is much quicker and easier to snag the Kindle and use it. My daughter has the Kindle Paperwhite. The Paperwhite is slightly narrower and taller than my Kindle Voyage, so her Paperwhite also fits (even easier) inside the front left small pocket.
On the right side, there is a slot for receiving a note pad. I had several types of note pads ready to see what worked best. From Amazon, I had a pad called Today's List Action Day (Junior Size), a pad called Tops Docket Gold Planning Pads (Junior Size), and Rhodia Graph Pad (stapled, Block Rhodia No. 16). The cardboard back of the Today's List Action Day fits perfectly in the Saddleback slot. The cardboard back of the Tops Docket Gold Planning Pads also fits (with a slightly extra room) in the Saddleback slot. The Rhodia cardboard back is far too wide to fit in the Saddleback slot. To make the Rhodia pad fit, you have to cut the cardboard back to fit the width of the Saddleback slot, leaving the paper pad wider than the cardboard back. The Rhodia pad itself does just barely fit the right side of the Saddleback. As far as quality of paper, the Rhodia is the thickest, smoothest. I am surprised to say that the Today's List paper is thicker and smoother than the Tops Docket Gold, but it is not as good as the Rhodia. The Tops Docket Gold paper is actually incredible cheap and thin, despite its product description on Amazon.
I hope that this was not too much information, but I am in love with my first Saddleback product. I know that I will start saving every week now to build up enough for a backpack to replace my Nike drawstring bag.
This is my first Saddleback purchase and I am THRILLED.
I called on a Thursday afternoon and wanted to Large Notepad Holder in Chesnut for a meeting that following Monday.
Saddleback's customer service was what I yearn for in retail and they made every effort to not only ship the product the same day- but helped me determine the right shipping so it would arrive at my hotel in time.
Once I received the product I think it goes without saying that the product was the HIGHEST Quality!!!! Although I've only had this for a week, I know it is probably the most durable and attractive business accessory I now own.
The quality is great, the finish is refined enough to fit in a boardroom but I am not worried about it surviving in the backseat with my toddler (aka, "real world" situations).
This is something I will cherish for years to come and if this is an example of Saddleback, I will certainly be purchasing other products as I can acquire them.
I have had this binder for almost a year now and absolutely love it. The leather is starting to get a great patina and always looks sharp. The pockets are tight as expected but can be stretched in no time if you need them larger. I haven't had a single issue with the folder and get compliments all the time from clients and colleagues in the Real Estate industry. If you are on the fence about buying this or skimping and buying a 80 dollar folder, BUY THIS FOLDER!
I purchased a medium notepad holder in Tobacco THIS week for my husband's graduation from Texas A&M. I have been waiting months for one to pop up in Dave's Deals but then panicked when I noticed they were out of stock. I live chatted with an employee a few times checking on when it would be back. Tuesday I received an email that it was back in stock and DID NOT hesitate to just order one at full price. Today, Friday, I received it in the mail. My husband is going to FLIP at how beautiful it is and how the smell is to die for. This is the PERFECT gift for someone who is hardworking and deserving of a work tool that will last a lifetime. So proud of my husband and his accomplishments, AND can't wait to see his face when he opens it! Thanks Dave! Can't wait to shower my guy with more of your handcrafted leather!
The Notepad Holder from SBL is of the highest quality. I got it on Chestnut and could not be happier with it. It fits perfectly in my medium Chestnut Thin Briefcase. It is not too thick but still very sturdy. Awesome quality.
This is my third notepad holder. I have this in tobacco, brown and new black. Love the rich color black which makes the holder look very expensive. I have used the brown holder for a year now and it still looks like new. All three holders are very thick and sturdy and scream quality. A little disappointed in the shoe polish odor - think it must be the ointment SB puts on its products. Sure odor will fade now that its out of the sealed plastic bag.
I bought a medium notebook holder to hold my truck driver log book , it's way to big but also way to cool , I may have to get me a side pocket duffle bag next in the same color .
Just received a Chestnut Medium Notepad Holder purchased for my daughter's law school graduation. Very pleased with the design & outstanding quality. Purchased a Large Classic Briefcase for myself last year after numerous years looking at various brands. Saddleback Leather delivers !!
Today it was sleeting and freezing rain but the UPS delivered the medium notepad holder that I got my husband for valentines. Thanks Dave for another great product. Be blessed.
While I don't use notepad holders in practice generally, and have a few cheapo pleather versions from vendors, boards, conferences, etc., I frankly wanted another excuse to get some more SB leather. Plus they treated me very well in squaring away the right briefcase for me (Collete, Rachel, Renee, Kate) and I wanted to show my appreciation. Justified it that it would make an impression in client meetings where an 8 x 14 is normally all I have with me. This is perfect. The med. chestnut is well-constructed, stiff (not thin, as some have commented here), holds an 8x11 pad, has 2 pockets for a few more papers, a pocket for my business cards and another for those of the people with whom I am meeting. It might also fit an iPad Air. We'll see. It's 25% off with a small mark on the front, but worth the discount and I will surely mark it up more. Not sure I would have purchased one at full price, beautiful as it is. It folds easily and is elegant in the best sense, while not being metro. The dark pigskin lining against the chestnut, which is really more deep, rich brownish red, looks great. It also matches my chestnut front pocket briefcase, wallet, etc. Though I might have chosen Tobacco for casual use, the chestnut gives a business look and I don't want to carry notepad holders when the day is done. Also, sheepishly, if you are honest with yourself and look at Dave Munson's personality list under each color category, I think you will find your match. At least, I did. (Except the dog part, Dave. I like dogs, we have two and have had many more! We aren't that bad!) Another pen holder just above existing one would have been great, but that is minor. Some say a strap or closure would be nice. Not so. It would ruin the simplicity and clean appearance of the front. Some also say its heavy or that the pockets are too tight. Not a chance -- it's perfect. If you are on the fence, just do it. Keep them thick and sturdy, Dave, and your customer service is great and makes your company. Now how about some SB watch bands and tough gloves, hmmm....
I purchased the small notepad holder in tobacco.
I am based in the UK:
Delivery time was good and the item was well packaged. The quality of this item is outstanding, you can tell straight away that this thing is going to take one helluva beating and last to tell the tale.
The one I received had some great markings on the front, looks like the Cow had a right good itch against a barbed wire fence.. plus some smaller fly/mosquito bites. None of these detract from the beauty or quality of the item, they are entirely visual only and make it look better in my opinion.
Mine was shipped in the closed position and remains that way when you close it, no popping open of its own accord or anything.
You can see why the rivets were added, those internal pockets open quite far when pulled, so the rivets strengthen the corners well.
The feel, colour and smell of the holder is fantastic.
Things to KEEP IN MIND when choosing:
- If you are in the UK, this holder takes A6 notepads or smaller. It is too small for A5(common small paper size)
- The pen holder in the middle is big but doesn't affect the closing of pad.
- The positioning of the pen holder means that when you close the pad the edges do not line up (like if you folded a piece of paper in half) - not an issue, just an observation. I actually think that once the leather becomes more supple this will loosen up a bit.
- A6 not A5.
- The pad is too heavy to negotiate a single item discount for international shipping.
- Remember you have the cost of the pad + Shipping ($25 in my case) + THIEVING UK CUSTOMS IMPORT CHARGES. The post office would not release my package for delivery until I paid them £20 (about $30)
- I think I said A6 somewhere.
Did I actually mention how brilliant this thing is? if you're prepared to take on board the above.. go get it!
Loved using this for the first day back at school today - the lo-tech revolution where the humble pen and paper gets the most beautiful case ever. It makes me want to write. I can't give up the (matching tobacco case) ipad just yet, not least because they look soooo good together. I will take this to every meeting ever for the rest of my life. Delighted to be a walking advert for Saddleback.
So this is the first item that I purchased from Saddleback, and I can tell you it is addictive. If you are like me you can never have too much of a good thing, and this is the highest quality leather you will ever own. However be warned the inexpensive items are a gateway drug!! I say this with much chagrin, because I now have over 8 items and as I write this I just placed another order for 3 more accessories. The most expensive item I have is the Dry bag, and I can tell you it is the same quality as the notepad holder. Bottom line is this stuff is well made, and very good looking.
This is one of five products that i've bought in a year because Saddleback leather makes an impression on any occasion. I am a grad student and having the medium notepad holder makes for great small talk before my interviews/appointments. Mt professors and interviewers always ask about the maker and I tell them about saddleback and all that they do with some of their profits. When people cant remember my name they sometimes refer to me as "the guy with the leather." True story.
I absolutely love it. There are more than a few "scars" or marks in the leather. They are not deep, but just enough to add character. The leather is very thick, in fact I had to lay some heavy books on it to keep it folded over. The bottom line is this notepad holder is way over engineered and will absolutely outlive me. For the small investment that I have made in this notepad holder, I will make it back in compliments and not having to buy many cheap alternatives.
I purchased the small Notepad Holder and couldn't be happier. I got mine in the tobacco color as it is my favorite, it just looks rustic. The older I get, the more I appreciate real, simple, quality items. Be it a very nice small batch bourbon, perfectly aged red wine or quality leather. This piece is amazing, pure and simple. The enclosed interior pockets let me keep my iPhone, wallet and business cards safely tucked away in a small managable package. While the iPad Mini does not fit in any of the pockets it can be carried along as a great match. The case sits perfectly on the middle console of my truck and is easy to take notes on as I'm on the phone "while parked of course". This might sound a little strange but this little dude is becoming a close friend. As a independent manufactures rep I am in and out of customers establishments all day long and this is the only thing I carry anymore. I keep this with me at almost all times and it is starting to really look good. I also have one of the small wallets and I will be purchasing I think the Simple backpack for my 40th Birthday. Do not hesitate to buy, this thing really is amazing.
I wanted to get a new notepad holder for when seeing clients. My old one was getting a bit old and ragged. When I received the SBL large notepad holder I was a little surprised as to how big and heavy it was. I didn't use it - only occasionally when I had to. 6 months later the holder is now a bit weathered and is a lot softer. It is great - it is now my principal notepad holder and I love using it. It just needed to be worked in.
I have both the small and medium notepad holders. The medium is good for meetings with clients, co-workers, and others. I routinely take it with me to any business meeting. The small is with me all the rest of the time as I use it to capture notes on the fly, make lists, and keep track of all the flotsam and jetsam that is part of my everyday life.
If I were only going to have one, I would get the small as it is really easy to carry and use. This is not to say the medium is cumbersome but both are hefty and solid being made, as they are, of thick, strong leather. Both are rugged, easy to carry, and gorgeous to look at. Interesting to me is that the small in chestnut is not that different in colour than the medium in dark chocolate.
Each notepad holder works well as a writing surface. Both require a notepad that has a strong binding at the top. A simple, cheap pad of graph paper will not survive as the back easily separates from the paper because of the thickness of the flap where you insert the pad. You will need a pad with a strong top binding. I wouldn't cheap out on the paper. Note also that a bit of force is required to insert the notepad so that is another reason it, the notepad, needs to be good quality.
The side pockets of both can hold a lot which is useful for organizing receipts and other pieces of paper. The medium will easily fit an iPad on the left hand side and I think you could fit an iPad Mini in the small. The small can carry a smaller notebook, such as a 3X5 Moleskine, in the left flap if you need to have a daily journal. The medium could also accommodate a 5X8 notebook. For that matter, a small kitchen sink might fit too.
Overall, I am very pleased with these products. I also have a large classic briefcase that is also working out well. Both notepad holders fit inside it easily, either in the inner sleeves or in the large outside flap.
I have both sizes in black. Larger for work and smaller for personal. Love them both. I clean and treat three times annually. They both match me. I am as rugged as they are. I put the miles on them. Highest quality and construction. You pay more for excellent quality.
I got mine about a year ago and have been fairly satisfied with it. I'd give it 3.5 stars. Keep in mind I have the older model pigskin, which feels like plastic and is very hard. The pad is very useful and I use it every day. It will not hold notebooks so you'd better like using notepads. It is always the nicest pad holder in the meeting, and one time I caught our executive director admiring it after I had left the room:) However, it is unreasonably thick and heavy for a notepad holder. I feel like it could have been made with 1/3 less leather/pigskin with the same functionality.
Holds a lot (pen, pad, biz cards, papers)
Think and heavy (why so much padding! it's not holding anything fragile after all)
Thus takes up too much space in my briefcase
I had already purchased two of the wallets and was looking for something else to try out from SBL. I use the small notepads at work and then I saw this small notepad holder. I used this last time at work for 21 days straight and it held up fine of course. It only stayed in my office and took it to morning meetings, working on a drilling rig offshore in the Gulf of Mexico, I didn't want to take it outside the living quarters, nothing last due to the saltwater in the air. All in all, it works, looks great and I am about to buy something else now :-)
I just received my medium notepad holder and I am quite pleased with it. It is very comfortable in use, it is stiff enough for taking notes if you hold it, and it lays flat on a table to provide a good writing surface. It can swallow up an iPad and not even burp.
The finish is beautiful, inside and out. And the aroma of newly-finished leather is intoxicating. About the lighter pigskin lining, I found that it got a bit darker when I applied a leather preservative to the lining of my classic briefcase. I expect the same is true with this notepad holder.
As to why someone would want this, I still find in that a lot of meetings, the most responsive and easiest way to capture ideas unobtrusively is with a pen and paper. This notepad holder serves that requirement extremely well.