Strathmore Watercolor Travel Journal

First impression of the Strathmore Watercolor Travel Journal

The Strathmore Watercolor Travel Journal was announced about a month ago on Strathmore social media outlets.  It was reported to have 100% cotton, European milled paper in a portrait format. I had such high hopes. [I’d share a link but the Strathmore website has been down all morning.  I’ll add it if I can get connected.]

Amazon still doesn’t have it. I’ve checked all the on-line art outlets I frequent. I finally found one to buy at Dakota Arts store in Bellingham when I was visiting there last weekend. I got it at a discount as they had a sale going on.

I bought the 5.5 x 8 inch version. There is a 7 x 10 one plus 2 sizes of pads.

The Good:
It is very light weight. That would be good for travel.
Paper seems acceptable, but I haven’t used it much yet.
Rounded corners are a nice touch.

The Bad:
Not very many pages: 10 sheets, 20 pages. You’d likely need several for a trip of any length, easily spending $100.

It seems expensive for what it is. It’s 10 folios sewn into one signature, covered by card stock with a list price of $24 (US). The sewing looks like it was done on an ordinary sewing machine and the thread is an annoying blue-green color. White would have been better.
Compare that cost to the Bee Creative Watercolor spiral bound book, also 100% cotton paper with 30 sheets, 60 pages for $12 (on Amazon, so not a perfect comparison).

Quite frankly, I can fold some paper, add a card stock cover and sew it together myself for a tiny expense.  I even have a cutter to round the corners.

A silicone band is provided. It needs to be as once opened, the book won’t stay closed. A binder clip is required to be able to draw in it.

I won’t be buying this again, even at a discount.

The 8×10 pad might be a better choice, if I want to work on loose pages. I don’t remember what I paid at Daniel Smith for the folder of 12 loose 8×10 sheets of Fluid 100 (similar paper at 140#, 100% cotton, cold press). Other retailers on line seem to charge about $20 or so. The Strathmore Watercolor Travel pad of 12 sheets was $13 at Dakota Arts.


About redharparts

Born in Michigan. Attended undergrad and graduate universities there. I've lived in England, Germany, Southern California and now Washington (state). I'm a retired Medical Social Worker with a past specialty in Oncology. I've enjoyed exploring historical re-creation through the SCA. I costume in several fandoms. Lately I've returned to Art and have taken up Urban Sketching, a version of en plein air painting.
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3 Responses to Strathmore Watercolor Travel Journal

  1. joantav says:

    This sketchbook really doesn’t seem worth it. 10 folios isn’t enough for any sketcher I know. lol The price is very high and it doesn’t look to sturdy. I was in Venice all of last month so I missed quite a bit here. I did go back and look at your sketches and read most of your posts. I love that hydrant…what a great idea to decorate them! You have a lot of great sketches here! Congrats on your impressive volunteer time!

  2. Pingback: New books, new bag | Red Harp Arts

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