Curates: Top Ten notebooks for creatives

If you’re anything like us, sometimes one of the best parts of a gallery visit is the gift shop. With this guilty pleasure in mind, CRAVE Curates has rounded up ten of the best notebooks for creative minds from some of our favourite London galleries and museums to be home to all your creative jottings.

1. Grids & Guides, a notebook for visual thinkers from The Saatchi Store – £13

It’s no secret that the CRAVE team is home to a serious grids and guides enthusiast (we’re not naming any names but we know he dreams in grid format). This hardback notebook not only allows you to map out schematics, and graphs in perfect ratio to your hearts content but is interspersed with charts, tables and info graphics that will keep the most orderly of minds happily distracted.

2. Even my ideas are recycled notebook from The Saatchi Store – £4.99

In 1986 Igor Stravinsky quoted “Lesser artists borrow; great artists steal.” Itself a version of previous incarnations of the same quote by various great minds before him, it goes to show that recycling a great one-liner is no crime, not even for the highly regarded among us. Take from that what you will about how to fill the pages of this notebook.

3. Undercover Notebook, matt copper from Tate Online Shop – £9.50

Created exclusively for TATE by Undercover, this beautifully smooth copper coloured leather notebook is a thing of… well, beauty. Definitely beats whipping out a battered spiral pad in the style stakes.

4. Magma Sketchbook from the V&A Museum – £12.95

We love an object that can multi-task almost as well as we can. Made from eco-friendly materials and with a contents page, off white sketching paper, grey crafting paper and 16 useful pages filled with (that holy grail) reliable information not readily or accurately available on the internet about types and sizes of paper, human proportions, the golden section, and digital file types and their uses, this notebook does just that.

5. The London Painting Trail by Moleskin from The National Gallery – £9.99

This is so much more than a mere notebook. It serves as a city guide to explore some of the greatest paintings that call London home. Take up the trail that will lead you to seven of the most iconic painting collections; The National Portrait Gallery, the Wallace Collection, and Apsley House among others.

6. Stoic notebook set from Southbank Centre Shop – £15

In today’s modern mayhem, a bit of stoicism goes a long way. The Stoics wanted to know how they could cope with chaos, and these three notebooks are the perfect aid in a quest for order, calm, and reason. Each notebook in this set of three carries an introduction to a great thinker on the inside front page, so no need for any anxiety over destroying the pristine pages of a new notebook.

7. Barbican Tower Notebook from The Barbican – £14

Designed exclusively by Kit Grover for the Barbican, this notebook is an homage to one of London’s most iconic skyline features, Shakespeare Tower, so named after William Shakespeare himself who once lived in the Barbican area in the 16th Century.

8. Roll Sketchbook from the Royal Academy of Arts – £15

Hand-made in India, this deckle edged sketch book has section stitched binding all of which allows it to be handily rolled up and slipped into a back pocket.

9. MARK’S x APARTAMENTO notebooks from The Bookshop At – from £11.50 

MARK’S has collaborated with spanish interior magazine “apartamento”, to edit an original series of the iconic Storage and create a notebook line. “Apartamento” and MARK’S invited three international creative talents, Eley Kishimoto, Nathalie Du Pasquier and Bertjan Pot, to design unique and vibrant patterns. The result is a clever bit of design that is not just a notebook, but doubles as a handy zip pouch to store everything from your business cards, to your iPhone. Find it in The Bookshop At, a small but perfectly formed edit of covetable coffee table books and quirky stationery attached to The Chelsea Harbour Centre. One of London’s best kept secrets.

10. Ian Monroe ‘Larger Wholes’ Notepad from The Whitechapel Gallery – £5 

Ian Monroe’s work explores themes of space and function. His geometric compositions, often in monochrome possess an architectural quality. This notebook designed exclusively for the Whitechapel in support of the Gallery’s education and exhibition programmes is a work of art in itself.