Many of you have probably been wondering what all the cryptic Robert Oster photos were about lately.  The time has finally come to announce a project that I am very excited about!  So the story goes:

Last year I got into fountain pens, and when I say got into I mean fell hard down the rabbit hole of pens and ink.  The first few months I was swimming in Lamy Safari, but then I discovered many brands of pen, and mostly importantly the magic of Tomoe paper!  I use it almost exclusively now in either 52GSM or 68GSM.  While I love 52GSM tomoe, the 68GSM has always appealed to me, it is just slighly thicker and feels more like traditional paper while still being smooth and displaying amazing sheen like the 52GSM variety.

I found that the options for 68GSM tomoe books with a substantial amount of paper were quite limited, and the offerings available weren’t as feature packed as I’d have liked.  I thought, well wouldn’t it be nice if say a Nanami Seven Seas married a Leuchtturm and had a baby?  The idea for Hippo Noto was born.


One of the features that I missed about “regular” notebooks were the colors.  You can get a Moleskin or a Leuchtturm in almost any color of the rainbow, not the same for Tomoe notebooks.  So I decided to start with three fun colors.  The cover says Hippo Noto, the characters are “Notes” in Japanese.


The paper is imported from Japan, and the notebook itself is assembled in China.  The manufacturer I found is wonderful, and has experience producing notebooks for leading brands.

The notebook has a lot of the features that I thought were missing from the TR notebooks out there.  Bookmarks, closure, and back pocket!


I thought it would be awesome to have a place for my InkJournal, swabs, etc ^_^.

Size wise, we went for a 500 page book in a “pocket” A5 size, which is just a little more narrow than a traditional A5.  Here are a couple of comparison photos to an A5 Rhodia.

**Please note that the photos are of the prototype book, the actual product will differ slightly.

Now lets get to the fun part!  Robert Oster.  I wanted something special to offer along with the notebook.  The inspiration for the name of the notebook came from our son who passed too soon.  Hippos were his thing, and I wanted this to be one hippo of a book!  I contacted Robert Oster and he was amazing.  He created a color that embodies the actual color of hippos.

Robert was kind enough to shoot some photos of the production.  The ink is produced in the Coonawarra wine district of South Australia.  In the photos it almost looks like the ink is made from the rich deep purple grapes that are used to produce the red wine in the district.

It is a purple, with pink tones that sheens a dark plum/black.  The ink is making its rounds for reviews, so I won’t get into too much detail about the color right now.

This ink will be available exclusively with Hippo Noto.  A Kickstarter will be up soon.  I hope you have enjoyed the first look at Hippo Noto ^_^  As always if you have any questions, comment or DM me!

I leave you with this photo of the prototype book and ink about to leave the station to its first reviewer!