Tuesday, 13 March 2012

What have I got in my pocketses?*

*Title inspired by conversations with my friend Gerard!

I thought I would do a compare and contrast post on my three pocket filofaxes: Aston, Cavendish and Portland. Only one of them is in use, the Aston, but I know I find it interesting to see other models, especially when browsing eBay (when there just aren’t enough pictures usually!).

Overall size/look
Here’s a picture of them all together. Although they are all supposed to be pocket sized, the Aston looks bigger (and not just because it is stuffed!). The other two are sleeker-looking.

Clockwise from top left: Cavendish, Aston, Portland

Looking at the reverse, you can see that the Cavendish, like it’s big brother, has an external zipped pocket. The Cavendish is the only one to have a full exterior pocket that would be useful for keeping paper money in.

Clockwise from top left: Cavendish, Aston, Portland

The leather on the Aston is pebbled and it has the seams and contrast stitching, making it perhaps a bit fussy-looking. It is however a fabulous colour! It’s called Orchid, but I would have said mauve as I would have known what that colour was (I have a lot of orchids and none of them are this colour!). It has a matte/silk finish rather than a shiny finish. The leather is soft, but not as soft as my Portlands. If you own a Finchley, it’s quite similar to that, except a little less ‘spongy’-feeling. Most of the interior is leather, except lining the pockets.

The Cavendish has smooth leather, with much more of a shine to it. The stitching is black, not contrast. Again, most of the interior is leather, except for lining the pockets.The leather is firmer than either of my Portlands – it’s probably the stiffest leather on any of my filofaxes.

The Portland is butter-soft and the leather is easy to grip – it seems to have a higher friction than other leathers. It’s hard to describe – it almost sticks to your skin (in a nice way!!). It is leather and fabric inside. It’s fairly floppy, but that might be age-related.

As you can see from the following pictures, the Portland wins hands down on this! The Aston is somewhere in the middle and the Cavendish is hopeless. The Portland, even unloaded, lies as flat as a pancake. The Aston was given some ‘training’ a while back but is still pretty reluctant to lie flat. The Cavendish… well. What can I say? It seems to open naturally to about 45 degrees and even with persuasion won’t lie flat.

Aston trying to convince me it lies flat...

Cavendish convincing no-one it can lie flat!

Portland - flat as a pancake!

Interior pockets and features
The Aston has 4 credit card slots on the interior left hand side, with a full-length pocket behind (that’s my half-marathon training plan poking out!). I found the pocket too stiff (with my cards in) to get paper money in and out easily (hence the zip-lock bag hack).

The inside right has a zipped pocket which is fabric lined. It can be a little fiddly to get coins out, but is okay.

Zipped pocket in the Aston
The Cavendish has the most pockets of all of them. On the inside left, there is the same set-up as the Aston, although the edges of the credit card slots are better finished in the Cavendish. The pocket behind is leather and fabric, like the Aston. On the inside right, there is another full-height pocket. There is also an exterior pocket that runs the full width of the filofax and an external zipped pocket. The full-width pocket is quite useful but the zipped pocket is pretty fiddly to get things out of, I find.

Cavendish, credit cards and full-height pocket

Cavendish, full-height pocket on the right

Full-width exterior pocket

The Portland has a gusseted pocket on the inside left, which makes a) holding a reasonable number of coins and b) getting coins in and out, an absolute breeze. I wish all filofaxes came with a gusseted pocket. On the inside right there are four credit card slots – again very well edged and curved, rather than straight. This, along with the softer leather make accessing the cards easier. Behind the card slot is a full-height pocket.

Gusseted pocket

Curved credit card slots

Ring size
This is the deal-breaker for me. If the Portland had 19mm rings, it would win hands down. But, it, like the Cavendish, has 15mm rings. I like to carry lots of stuff in my day-to-day filofaxes, which makes both the Portland and the Cavendish more likely than not to stay in a drawer, at least for the time being. You can see from the early pictures how stuffed my Aston is. I couldn’t carry so much with either of the other two, and although the Cavendish would be a zip-lock pocket down as I could put paper money in the external full-width pocket, I would still find them too small, which is a shame.

So why would the Portland win over the Cavendish? After all, the Cavendish has more pockets… it’s the feel of it. That butter-softness and complete flattability wins me over. I just wish it had 19mm rings! Since the Aston is both a delicately pretty colour and has 19mm rings, that's what I'm using.

I hope my reviews of the three pocket filofaxes have been helpful.

1 comment:

  1. your aston looks soooo great! all round and filled. Beautiful!