Daycraft “Make My Day” 2011 Diary

So, for my first review coming back from finals week, I bring you a product straight from the shores of distant Hong Kong. Ok, so it really only took it a couple days to get here, compared to the months that it once took to get anything from the “Far East”, so I’m not going to complain. This review, as well as all the other Daycraft products seen in coming weeks, were provided to me by the gracious Mr. Foreal Lee, Retail and Marketing Manager at Tai Shing Diary Limited, the parent company of Daycraft.

So, a little bit of information about Daycraft. Their website states that Tai Shing Diary was founded in 1988 and that over the years they have won a well-deserved reputation for getting things right. These Chinese-produced diaries focus on quality as well as usability. Each year, two new “collections” of diaries are produced, one for the corporate consumer, and another for the mass consumers. They also attempt to make sure that all the information in their diaries (more on that later) is accurate and up-to-date at the time of printing. Last but not least, their “Goal is to bring you even more innovative, practical and attractive diary and planner products. At Daycraft, we make your day.”

So, from Daycraft, we have their “Make My Day” diary. This beautiful, fine cloth-covered, black diary has a ton of features inside just waiting to be explored! According to the information that Mr. Lee sent me, the paper included is 70gsm cream woodfree paper (which, I found out, is paper based on chemical pulp, which has had most of the lignin removed and separated from the cellulose fibers). While this paper doesn’t really feel like 70 gsm, the truth is apparent in the bleedthrough tests where only the sharpies, rollerballs, and a bit of the fountain pens bleed through the page. So, for the record, while the pages are smooth, I would stick to pencils, ballpoints, and gel pens for use in these diaries.

Now, for what’s actually on the pages. One of the most interesting things I noticed about this diary was the fact that the “personal information” was placed at the back of the book, rather than the front. The first printed page in the book is actually a small four-year calendar showing 2010-2013. The next spread lists major international holidays for a host of countries (Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, China (3 different regions), Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Republic of Korea, Malaysia, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Philippines, Russia, Singapore, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, UK, and the US). Directly following that are page after page of “international guides” for each of the mentioned countries, which include pertinent information such as currency, phone networks, VAT, electricity supply, etc. Also at the end of this section is a world time chart, which allows you to easily calculate the current time anywhere in the world. The next section in this information-filled diary is the IDD codes, which contains all the telephone dialing codes as well as some specific area codes for each country. Next come the conversion tables, everything you’ll need to convert from standard measure to metric. Finally, we once again reach the planner section.

First off, we have a monthly planner for 2011. There are two months on each page, which doesn’t leave you with much space to write in, but you can fill in pertinent future appointments. One of the interesting things about this diary was the placement of a “cover page” on each month. THese are all artistic in design and in some way spell out “Make my Day”. The adjoining page is ruled and features a small monthly calendar (assumedly to be used to write down important dates to remember for that particular month). The actual planner itself is a week-spread planner, featuring the first three days of the week on the first page and the other four on the second page (Saturday and Sunday are half-coulmns). Each day has the date, followed by any holidays, followed by ruled lines to write down your life. Also, in the upper right hand corner of each page is another mini calendar of the current month.

Toward the end of the diary, we hit another yearly planner, termed a “Forward Planner” for 2010. Two months on each page again leave you with not much space to write in. Following the “Forward Planner” is a cash flow table, an address book, and finally, the personal memoranda (personal information) section. The last several pages of the book are detachable memos (3 perforated memos per page), which I used to do my ink test.

All in all, this is a beautiful little book from Daycraft, and while I was disappointed in the way the paper handled liquid inks, it’s still a functional planner that I would easily recommend to anyone looking to plot out their life.

Note: I am not an employee nor and I am in any way affiliated with Daycraft or Tai Shing Diary. This review and my opinions of this product is in no way affected by the fact that this item was a free sample from Daycraft.