Pros of this solution
- The prior version was a loop attached to the right side (open side) of the Pocket Moleskine's rear cover. However, this solution only supported one pen and made working the elastic bookmarker loop difficult - the pen loop just got in the way even if the pen was not attached.
- Side pen holders made the book wider and that left marks in the jean pockets.
- Customize to the items you want to carry - an exact fit. Attach more than one pen or water/aqua brush. You can even make the loop big enough for a pocket watercolor set (those tiny metal ones that hold 12 watercolor half-pans)
- Simple and looks clean.
Downsides to my solution
- The cover may not open as flat as you might like when pens are in the loop. I draw on both sides and didn't notice a big issue even with water colors, but you need to evaluate this for yourself.
- Its permanent. It's easy to remove the duct tape if you are very careful - pull at an angle slowly to avoid the cover material from separating i.e. leave bubbles in the cover. Any duct tape on the paper inside the cover will pull some paper off with it.
The solution uses Black Duct Tape, attaches to the front of the Moleskine (or any other notebook) and can support 1, 2, 3 or even 4 pens. I haven't tested it's robustness with more than 4 pens but I don't see any reason why it should not work - two layers of duct tape is pretty strong.
I like the way this solution looks, its not bulky like some leather solutions and holds more then 2 pens!!!
Step 1: What You Need
- Black duct tape (or any color that makes you happy)
- A note book like a Moleskine Sketchbook or Watercolor book.
- The pens you want to carry with you. I carry a Rotring 0.5 mechanical pencil, a Faber Castell Pitt XS pen and a Micron pen or Pentel clip/pen eraser.
- A scissor (not pictured)
- Non-stick surface, like Jeans or Cotton pants - A working surface that duck tape will stick to just a little - enough to hold still but not enough to get stuck on.
Step 2: Create the Loop for Your Pens
- Cut maybe 4-5 inches of duct tape.
- Face the sticky side down. You want the non-sicky side inside the loop to avoid pens form sticking to the loop.
- Wearing jeans helps, the duct tape sticks to jeans just a little - enough to keep in place but easy to peel off.
- Its OK if some cotton fibers stick to the duct tape.
Step 3: Position the Loop on the Book
- Position the loop with the pens on to your book.
- I keep the pens in the loop while working to make sure the loop keeps the right form.
- A few notes -
- Leave room at the top to account for your pens' clips.
- Keep in mind your pen's length - you don't want it extending below the bottom of the book and jab your thigh or make a hole in your pocket.
- Move your entire pen through the loop. Some pens are narrow at the tip/cover end and wider at the base.
- Don't position the loop too close to the side edge - leave at least 1cm from the closest edge. This allows the duct tape wrap we attach next to have a strong hold.
Step 4: Wrap the Loop With Duct Tape
- Now we wrap the loop with some more duct tape. Don't be stingy, cut enough duct tape to wrap the book around more than one. You want to avoid running short.
- Place the book and duct table on a table where you can let the duct tape hang without sticking to something.
- I start with placing the duct tape on the loop and use a firm object the make sure the tape sticks to the loop and book with no gaps.
- Work downwards to the binding first (this worked for me).
Step 5: Wrap Around the Book
- Then, press down the duct tape at the top and wrap some duct tape around the edge of the cover. This gives the wrap a clean look and also prevents the tape from unsticking later.
- Wrap the long end of the duct tape around the back of the book.
- Pay attention to how straight the wrap is - you want it parallel to the top edge of the cover.
- Avoid the elastic band!
- End with wrapping some duct tape around the edge of the back cover.
Step 6: Double Check the Wrap
- Make sure the tape sticks to the book and pen loop firmly - no bubbles and no gaps. This helps make the wrap last longer.
- This also causes usable space of the loop to shrink a bit. Thats the reason the loop should be a little roomy.
- Feel free to press down the loop in both directions to make the tape stick well.