REVIEW – I have loved notebooks, diaries, and journals since I was a young kid. As an adult, my fondness for stationery has gotten a little more refined. These days I don’t settle for a composition book and a Bic pen. I want my notebooks to feel AND look unique. One way to do this is to wrap a notebook in a gorgeous leather cover like the custom covers from LeCow. Spoiler: their covers are fantastic.
LeCow notebook covers are handmade custom leather notebook covers that come in a variety of sizes, leather colors, thread colors, closure types, and optional pockets.
Note that LeCow is also known as Le-Right. They are the same leather notebook cover company run by Diamond and his wife Wing. The only difference between the companies other than the name is the logo. Le-Right is for people who don’t want a cute little cow logo on the back of their notebooks.
Design and features
The great thing about LeCow is that every cover that Diamond makes is a one of a kind notebook cover. That’s because no two pieces of leather are going to be the same and each cover is custom made per the purchaser’s wants and needs.
For me, I wanted a standard sized Traveler’s Notebook cover. If you’re not familiar with Traveler’s Notebooks, they originated in Japan by the Midori company. They are a simple one-piece leather cover that uses elastic strings to hold multiple 4.25 x 8.25 inch inserts (notebooks).
The traditional TN (Traveler’s Notebook) cover uses strings to hold the notebook inserts. For the LeCow cover, I wanted to go with a folio-style that does not use strings.
LeCow has many leather colors to choose from and I picked Old Boots for the main part of the cover and Brownie for the pocket on the front.
The golden color of the Old boots leather is gorgeous and has a wonderful pebbled texture. The leather is soft, feels comfortable in hand and it smells WONDERFUL.
I just love the little LeCow logo on the back corner of the cover.
As I already mentioned earlier, this Traveler’s Notebook cover doesn’t use strings to hold the inserts. It’s a folio-style cover. That means that inside the front and back covers are pockets that hold the insert’s covers.
I also asked for small pockets to be added on top of the folio pockets. That’s where LeCow is so awesome. He offers a variety of pocket styles that you can choose from. You can even go so far as to have different color leathers for the pockets. You can also see the quality of the stitching.
The pockets are small but they are perfect for small items like rulers, and pictures like those from a Polaroid Hi-Print printer that I reviewed recently.
The notebook that I’ve been using with the LeCow cover is a Cottonwood Arts D2 sketchbook that I took to my local OfficeMax to have cut down to the standard Traveler’s Notebook size. FYI: I love these notebooks because the paper is smooth but thick enough to stand up to markers, fountain pens, and even watercolors. It also lays flat!
I like sliding the back cover of the notebook into the folio pocket on the right side of the LeCow cover and leaving the top cover of the notebook just the way you see above.
Doing it that way leaves me with the option of adding a second notebook on the left side of the cover.
The fit is a little tight due to the thickness of the Cottonwood Arts notebook, but it does work.
Here we see the Cottonwood Arts D2 sketchbook by itself inserted in both folio pockets. This is a perfect fit.
I don’t want to forget to talk about the pocket on the front of the TN cover. If you look closely you might think that there’s a flaw in that pocket as there is a small ragged tear along the top edge of the leather. This is not a flaw, it’s called character. If you don’t want “character” like that, you can tell Diamond and he’ll do his best to accommodate your wishes. I actually love it. No one is EVER going to have a leather cover like mine. It’s one of a kind, just like me 😉
Questions for Diamond:
1. How did you get started making leather products?
I start to make the cover is helping my uncle who ran the brand called Naked Cow, and he is passed away, and the brand is finished in a few years ago.
2. Where do the leathers that you use come from?
The leathers all import from Italy and South America and processing in Taiwan then export to USA.
3. Do you use a sewing machine or do you sew by hand?
I am custom made, so most of the covers all make by sewing machine, but I have hand sewing option too, just plus prices.
4. Do you have help, or is it just you?
All the works only depend on me and my wife Wing, she does the puzzle and mountain style covers.
5. Do you use any of your own notebook covers? If so, what is your favorite one?
Yes, I use pocket-size cover, like Moleskine pocket-size notebooks, they are easy to carry everywhere!
6. What is your favorite notebook to use in a cover?
Hobonichi is my favorite!
What I like
- Quality materials and craftsmanship
- Diamond answers every question and concern quickly and thoroughly
What I’d change
There is something so satisfying when you envision a design and then a master craftsman makes that vision a reality that is even better than what you had created in your own mind. That’s what Diamond and Wing are able to do at LeCow. They are so awesome to work with. Diamond responds to questions at lightning speed and his work is as close to perfect as it gets. Everything about the Traveler’s Notebook that he created for me turned out exactly how I wanted. If you have ever wanted a custom cover for your journal, you owe it to yourself to check out LeCow/LeRight. I know you’ll be happy with what he will create for you.
Price: Varies but the cover reviewed here was $122.00 (Currently running 20% off Black Friday Deal expires 12/1/20)
Where to buy: LeCow
Source: The sample for this review was purchased with my own funds minus a 15% discount.