Dodo pads and planners

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Dodo Pads are a British phenomenon that I somehow failed to learn about while studying in Cambridge. I know about them now thanks to the wonders of the Internet; the company found me on Twitter a couple months ago and kindly offered to send samples.

But first, some history. According to this web guide:

The Dodo Pad began life way back in 1966 as the desk diary that gave you space to doodle. It quickly gathered a cult following and soon became ‘indodispensable’, as the website says.

“The website,” of course, is the company’s, and its design and overall aesthetic seem to be a pretty good reflection of their sense of humor, starting with this bird/mascot:

At any rate, I couldn’t resist his surly little scowl, so I had the company send two products that are way more specific than anything we make: the Book of Dates, and the Book of the Big Day, which came up in response to a post I wrote about pregnancy planners.

For entertainment value, neither can be beat. The Book of Dates has folders for each month where you can stash greeting cards and write down annual events like birthdays, anniversaries, and so on, and it’s filled with quirky illustrations and quotes (“Memory is what tells a man that his wife’s birthday was yesterday”).

The wedding planner, meanwhile, is broken down into a rather daunting number different categories (more than you would need, I hope, or else I’m never getting hitched), beginning with the guest list, whose illustration shows a handsome Victorian couple covering their heads with their hands.

The covers are made from stiff cardboard, and the binder style setup inside lets you shuffle things around, including the pages of graph paper that come with each book. These performed decently, but not outstandingly, with fountain pens — there was some feathering and a bit of bleedthrough with the three FPs I tried, though a V-ball and a ball point pen both did fine:

(FYI, the paper doesn’t have the weird lavender tinge that it does in my photographs; it’s plain white. Sorry.)

Anyway, it’s a humorous way to stay organized, and a good gift for people with those sorts of sensibilities. You can buy it direct from the Dodo Pad website or on Amazon.

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