I filled up my first Baron Fig notebook last week, and overall I've been very happy with it. In fact, I rolled right into a second Baron Fig book when my first one filled up.
There are still some rough edges here and there, but none of the concerns I called out in my original review ended up being show-stoppers for me. I also had a little fun trying to find my own hacks for the minor issues I encountered.
Fabric Cover Durability
I was a bit worried about how the fabric cover would hold up to daily wear and tear. It performed very well. I dragged the book around with me daily, including on a cross-country trip. The cover still looks great. In fact, the fabric softened slightly with use for a more homespun feel.
Fabric Cover Alignment
In my original review, I noted that the "grain" of my fabric cover was slightly misaligned. I quickly stopped noticing this in daily usage, and my second Baron Fig arrived with a perfectly aligned fabric cover. So, I think this is most likely a non-issue.
Cover Closure (or Lack Thereof)
My biggest complaint about Baron Fig is that the cover does not stay closed when not in use. This problem got worse the more I used the book. As Jeff Abbott noted in his review, this can be a bit problematic if, like me, you have a tendency to lay your fountain pen on top of your notebook. I've definitely had a couple of near catastrophes from pen rolling.
I dropped an e-mail to the Baron Fig folks, and they quickly confirmed that this is a known issue that they are working on a solution for.
A simple fix is to add a big rubber band, but it took me a surprisingly long time to find one that fits well and looks decent. (Note to local law enforcement: I had a non-creepy reason for all of the time I spent in girls and ladies headband aisles last month.)
I finally struck gold on Amazon with the aptly-named "Grifiti Big-Ass Bands" (6-inch version).
These bands come in a variety of colors and fit the Baron Fig very well. They're also made out of silicone rather than traditional rubber band material, which makes them a bit nicer to handle.
I can even squeeze my iPad mini in to create what the Germans call a Roterfaden BaronFigleiter.
Bookmark Ribbon Fraying
Nearly every Baron Fig review I've read highlights the fact that the bookmark ribbon tends to fray. It took several weeks before I encountered any issues with this, but once I did it went South very quickly. I can also confirm from experience that the old "burn the end of the shoelace" trick isn't very effective with this material.
As soon as I received my second Baron Fig, I trimmed the ribbon and hit it with a little of this. After about a week, the ribbon end is still flawless.
The fact that I've re-upped for a second Baron Fig kind of says it all. I'm sure I will wander back to my other favorites from time to time, but the Baron Fig has earned a spot in my regular rotation.
Also, because it's a great value and simple to buy, it makes paper quality missionary work much easier. Whenever I see someone using a Moleskine, I send them to the Baron Fig website.