Sat 20 October 2018

Review: Starbucks Moleskine 2016 Planner

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It’s that time of the year when December is not just for getting gifts for family and friends, but also for picking the right planner for the upcoming new year.

Most folks have perhaps migrated their scheduling routine to Google Calendar, or other mobile apps. But there are those who still prefer the tactile feel of jotting down your plans on paper, and it can’t be just any planner for some.

We checked out Starbucks’ Moleskine planner and see how it will fare with some writing materials. But first, here’s a look at what that sticker-collecting can get you.


This year, the coffee shop chain partnered with the Italian brand which identifies itself as “heir and successor to the legendary notebooks used by artists and thinkers over the past two centuries: amount them Vincent van Gogh, Pablo Picasso, Ernest Hemingway and Bruce Chatwin.”

Starbucks regulars who complete their 18 stickers (9 Christmas drinks and 9 regular drinks) can choose from one of four hardbound options: white or green for regular weekly planners, and red or black for pocket daily planners.

Moleskine notebooks already have bookmarks, and the colored monthly pages provide colored touches on the usually-plain black cover notebook. The standard Starbucks coupons can be found at the back cover flap of each notebook.

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Each month starts with a monthly view, with random art prints and quotes on some pages. The regular planners have the whole week at the left with lined pages for notes at the right. Thicker pocket planners have one page per day.

The Starbucks Moleskine planner’s hard bound cover can definitely take a year of moderate abuse. But as with all Moleskine notebooks, the back pocket is usually the first to suffer wear and tear, so consider reinforcing the part connected to the cover with your washi tape of choice especially when you see yourself using that part a lot.


So how does it hold up to your usual writing materials?

If you’re very particular about the paper, you should know that Moleskine paper is notoriously thin nowadays since the manufacturer reportedly made some changes a few years ago. The old paper was a bit creamier and thicker, and could relatively handle your standard G-Tec or Tecpoint pens well.

For the Starbucks Moleskine planner, your usual ballpoint, gel, or sign pen will behave although scribbles will show through the back of the page. The extent, however, can be negligible. Faber Castell colored pencils are fine, and colored markers also work well, with some show through and no bleeding. Of course, Sharpies will bleed and show through the pages.


But if you’re using fountain pens or brush pens, Moleskine paper is not exactly the best paper for FP and calligraphy inks. Extra fine and fine nibs will behave like your non-FP writing materials: any thicker nib means bleeding at various degrees.

If you’re looking at going crazy with art materials on your Starbucks Moleskine planner, we suggest you try out the paper first from a friend who already completed their stickers, then decide if the inevitable show through and occasional bleeding is manageable. After all, it is all up to personal choice.

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