Back in the last week of October, I got my first ever Hobonichi through Pens-Galore. One of my friends is a huge fan and she told me that this planner uses Tomoe River paper. I’m sold. I love Tomoe River paper so much because it’s so thin but also very durable. It’s fountain pen friendly and is one of the best paper I’ve used for it. It just shows off the character of fountain pen inks in such a beautiful, delicate way. I picked the Hobonichi Cousin because I primarily wanted to use this not just as a planner but also a journal. The smaller Hobonichi (A6 size) is just a bit too small for my needs. It came with a cute little uni pen and a blue tissue dispenser.
The cover is also made by Hobonichi. It’s black outside and beige inside and fits the cousin perfectly. There are several pockets on it that makes it really convenient. The back also has an extra pocket, and so does the outside of the cover. It’s really simple-looking, and I thought it a bit too vanilla at first, but I admit it’s growing on me.
The cover also has two pen loops that are meant to carry one pen and at the same time close the cover securely. Of course I wouldn’t be using the loops at all, my pens are safe in my pen case thank you very much. The cover also has two pieces of lace for bookmarking. These are quite distinctive of the Hobonichi covers. I like them because I can bookmark two separate parts of the planner.
The planner has this section that lets you look at the month at a glance. It’s a great way of looking at the holidays, birthdays, and other important dates for all of the months. There’s also a small portion at the bottom that lets you take down a few notes for each month.
There’s a month-view spread too. So you can put in more details of your monthly plans but still see them at a glance. This is my favorite view for planners because I’m not very down-to-the-hour detailed with my daily plans. I just need an overview to help me remember important dates of the month.
At the side of the monthly spread, there’s a place to note down some highlights. You may also note down important things that you don’t want to forget for that month. I’m planning to put some of the Bible verses that have impacted me greatly for that month, or encouraging verses that I want to remember and ponder on.
I love that there’s so much space to write on. 🙂 As you can see, the Hobonichi Cousin starts its monthly spread on December of this year. So that great for making early plans for this very busy month.
For the more detail-oriented, there’s a page for your day at a glance. It’s divided up by hours, with the week starting at Monday. The day at a glance pages also starts on January. I’m pretty excited to start that. It’ll be a great help in keeping track of my (growing) list of responsibilities at work. 🙂
My favorite part is the daily page. Look at all that blank space. Sigh. You can use this to jot down more extensive notes about your day or, like me, use it as a daily journal. I usually write more than one page a day in my journal, but I’m planning to use this page for my daily devotions. I’m really excited about this.
The daily pages are made up of light-colored grids, and each month has a different color. If you look at the side, you’ll see the different colors there, to help you find your pages easier. Since this is Tomoe River paper, it can take watercolor, markers, ballpoint, fountain pens, sharpie, and other kinds of writing instruments without bleed through. You can even include photos in your journal entries. I’ve seen other users include instax photos, washi tapes, etcetera into their journals. It will bulk up the planner but the binding can take it. If you’re planning to use stamps, I recommend chalk-based stamp inks, not alcohol or dye based inks (those tend to bleed through most kinds of paper).
Overall, I like the layout of the Cousin a lot. It’s not overly complicated or redundant. I like that the binding lets you lay the planner flat while you write. The paper is excellent too. I’m excited to use this for planning and journal writing soon. 🙂