A&F is selling three limited edition Field Notes sets, and I’m delighted with all three. They are all different, and I like each. There’s something for everyone, which is good, because I’m giving a few sets as Christmas presents.
Up there are all three: first, Floral Prints; then, in the middle, the black ones, which don’t seem to have a name but are designated “Ruled Paper”; then the Heritage ones on the right, which feature outdoor sporting scenes.
I read online that these were designed to represent the Abercromie & Fitch aesthetic and are a nod to A&F historical patterns. I’ll take their word for it; I’m not really an A&F patron. In fact, years ago when I had preteens who shopped there, I found it a horror show on every level, and after while I refused to go back.
But Field Notes. So I dared. And this time everything was better. The employees were friendly, helpful and normal. The cologne level had been lowered below “choking,” the music lowered below “deafening,” and the lighting had been raised from “crypt-like” to merely “very dark.” Thumbs up A&F.
One thing, though: I did not check if the gift cards still feature naked young torsos. Those made such an appalling and incongruous display one Christmas at Grandma’s that now, years later, I’ve come to cherish the memory. Like the Ghost of Christmas Past, it warms my heart and puts a smile on my face.
But back to the Field Notes. Love these.
First, the Floral. It’s the one that grabs you, visually. It’s showy, lush and beautiful, down to the gold foil stamping on the covers. Since A&F is a clothing store, I feel I have license to accessorize the Field Notes with pens. The Floral Prints is fancy.
Pen mood: Pelikan M605 White Transparent.
Second comes the black set, unnamed, perhaps overlooked, perhaps even disrespected. I didn’t even see it online, just at the store. But do not slight the unnamed black set. It’s nice. It’s like Pitch Black but with kraft paper brown accents.
Why black? Black seems to be the A&F color. Certainly that fits the physical store’s aesthetic and lighting level. Even the bag they gave me was black.
I like black, and I like these. The only negative of this set, not shared by the other two, is that I will not be able to find them inside my purse. I’m sure this did not occur to anyone, since very few A&F shoppers are old enough for a purse.
As a Field Notes notebook, it’s classic, no-nonsense, un-ornamented. Pen mood: Lamy Dialog 3.
Then there is the Heritage set. I guess the name references the heritage of Abercrombie & Fitch? Whatever. I won’t ever remember what it’s called once I remove the band, so I’m not going to critique the name. I like this set aesthetically. It’s retro. It’s an homage to outdoorsy Americana. It’s beautifully designed, and the colors are perfect.
The Heritage set matches my Parker 75 in Thuya laque. Just look at that dad in the middle book: he totally needs this pen.
In all these notebooks, the writing paper is 60 pound weight. That’s heavier than the basic Field Notes, which is 50 pound. The inside pages are ruled in the Floral and black, and graph paper in the Heritage. Cost is $15 per pack; according to A&F, it is a limited edition.
I found the website difficult to navigate, and it didn’t even have the black, so if you like any of these, I’d recommend using the website to find a store, and going over yourself.