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Seven Seas "CROSSFIELD" A5 Journal 2nd Edition

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Announcement: This version of the Crossfield has been printed with a full grid, replacing the individual crosses of the original Crossfield. Spacing remains the same at 5mm, with 15mm top and bottom margins. 

Note #1: We've found that, compared to cream Tomoe River, white Tomoe River is a bit more see-through - thus you may be able to see, very slightly, the lines from the prior or following sheet, giving a slight "out of focus" effect. If it's bothersome, Just place something thin (like another sheet of paper or a transparent writing mat) underneath, and the ghosting will disappear.

Note #2: A few people asked why we went with a full grid, and why the margins? Well, regarding the grid, a lot of customers asked about it - and I try to accommodate requests that are possible to put into production (as opposed to, say, page numbering, which would be too expensive in a low production operation such as ours). A full grid is definitely doable in that respect, and the cross-grid had already gone through several runs, so we thought we would try it.

As for the margins, that was my idea, for a couple reasons: First, looking at thousands of notebook entries, I found that hardly anyone uses the top and bottom 10-15% of any page (for handwriting anyway), thus any printing in those areas seemed unnecessary. So, I could have left it blank, but instead decided to add some visual interest, partly inspired by the "drafting paper" layout, which has title boxes at the top and bottom.


Finally - a Tomoe River notebook with a grid! Construction is the same as the Seven Seas Standard, except that it comes with white TR paper and a dark red coated-fabric cover. Same lay-flat binding! Same massive page count!


  • Flexible, semi-stiff coated fabric cover.
  • Smythe-sewn (thread-bound), lay-flat binding
  • White Tomoe River paper - lots and lots of it
  • No cover printing or branding except for the back end sheet
  • Comes with a kraft slip case

 The pages are "thread-bound", which is a very old and still the best production method of bookbinding. Thread-bound pages are sewn (with a special sewing machine) into signatures, which are gathered to form a text-block, which is then cased into a cover. This method allows the journal to lay flat with no stress to the spine, and for that reason it is the absolute best method for binding a book (including a library book) that sees the daily rigors of opening, closing and pressing down with the hands. It can even be folded back on itself. If you were to go on an around-the-world trip over the course of many months and needed to document your experiences in great detail, this journal would certainly be up to the task.

The paper size is A5 (148x210mm or 8.3x5.8 inches), and 15mm thick. The cover is made of a coated fabric, similar to buckram, but a bit less coarse and heavy duty. The cover has also been made stiffer through the use of a core board sandwiched between the fabric and the end sheets. You can use the book as-is, or put it inside a leather, cloth, paper, vinyl, fabric, etc. outer cover.




  • The notebook will lay flatter if you bend it back on itself a bit. Go ahead and bend it backwards! It won't break.
  • If you use a fine-to-medium fountain pen, the ink will generally dry fast enough. If it doesn't, close the book on the included pink blotter sheet.
  • If you use a pencil, softer leads such as 2B and 3B work well.
  • Pencil marks erase very cleanly from this paper, and using a high quality eraser is pure pleasure. Don't be surprised if you find yourself making mistakes on purpose.
  • If you find the book a bit thick for your writing style, please read this.


Recommended accessories:



  • Size A5, 210x148mm, 15mm thick, (8.3x5.8x0.7 inches)
  • White-color (which is really an off-white) Tomoe River 52 gsm "Notebook" paper
  • 5mm grid with 15mm top and bottom margins
  • 480 pages (240 leaves), no lines, rounded corners
  • Lay-flat thread binding
  • Flexible, tough, thin water-resistant coated-fabric cover
  • Ivory-colored end sheets
  • Comes with one A5 blotter paper
  • Made in Japan


ABOUT MANUFACTURING VARIATION: We've found that Tomoe River paper, and thin paper in general, is unlike working with "regular" weight papers such as 20 lb bond, laid, wove, etc. papers (we have actually be unable to find any binders in the US that are willing to work with TR paper). Tomoe River paper is very sensitive to humidity, and when bound in a thick book by machine as ours are, some unexpected variations can occur. So far, we've experienced the following (also please see the pictures):

  1. Rippled pages
  2. A subtle "waviness" on the edge of the book block
  3. Stuck-together pages (rare)

None of these issues will affect the writing surface or quality of the writing experience, and it's not practical for us to go through each book page-by-page (these issues can be quite random). However, if for any reason you are not satisfied with the book you receive, please let us know (dave@nanamipaper.com) and we'll do our best to rectify the situation. Thank you for your understanding!

For more information and design goals, please read the Seven Seas Journal Fact Page.

If you'd like to compare this journal to the cost of other journals, please see our notebook value comparison.

Did you know that Hemingway wrote with a pencil? We like to think that, had he known about the Seven Seas Standard, he would have used a fountain pen. Here's the full story.


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Product Reviews

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  1. Love it 5 Star Review

    Posted by on 19th Sep 2017

    I am using my new Crossfield for a bullet journal I have just started, and it is perfect. (It has so many pages I will probably fit several years into it.) My favorite for creative writing will always be the Seven Seas, a perfect notebook that cannot be surpassed, but the grid pattern on the Crossfield is subtle and very helpful for keeping things aligned and making little calendars and various kinds of diagrams and notes in a book that is more list- and item-oriented. I am in love with Tomoe River paper, too. Awesome value and I love the red cover. Great for fountain pen, you get show-through but no bleeding.

  2. Love the new grid, an almost perfect notebook 5 Star Review

    Posted by on 9th Sep 2017

    My quest for notebooks has pretty much come to an end with the Crossfield v2 and new Cafe Note Grid 3.7mm. I was not a big fan of the original crosses in Crossfield v1 (I know many people love those, but I stayed away just because of those -- I'm firmly in the grid camp after all these years). This new light dashed grid is really wonderful, very similar to Hobonichi and other light grids I love, so I'm now converted to this edition. Thank you for your dedication in making these masterpieces!

    In both cases (both with the Crossfield v2 and the Cafe Note Grid v1), there are a few minor improvements I'd personally love to see in the next version... but in all cases, PLEASE keep the dashed grid format concept. I love it. It has completely replaced my need to purchase Hobonichis and is making an assault on my plans for more Midori MD grid notebooks as well.

    So for my vote for suggestions, I listed several wishes in my review of the Cafe Note Grid, but the key ones I hope are considered are:

    1) Please consider a 4mm grid size as an optimal compromise. 5mm is okay in the Crossfield, as is 3.7mm in the Cafe Grid, but I've found 4mm is a magical sweet spot.

    2) I would LOVE to see "Avec" or "1/2" versions with half the number of pages... those would be perfect for separating content into projects/volumes and be ultra portable. Hobonichi does this, as does Stalogy... I recognize the "value" proposition would change for some people, but I'm not suggesting you do away with the full versions -- you've already mastered the value proposition with cost per square inch of paper with the full version. So I'm just asking you to consider releasing a thinner 1/2 version as well and these would become more suited to more kinds of projects and situations. 480 pages (15mm thick) is a LOT of pages... I would be very excited about a 240 page version and a 192 page version of the Cafe Note Grid.

    3) I know this would cost more money to print, but I'm in the camp of subtle little page numbers in the corners.

    On top of those hopeful changes, I also don't need the big boxes on top and bottom if you're thinking of getting rid of those, and I would love little tick marks in the margins every 10 grid boxes like the Midori MD series, which I think is a lovely little detail. Lastly, I'd love a bookmark... I understand they used to come with them, so here's a vote to bring them back in the next edition.

    Anyway, thanks again for bringing these two fantastic notebooks into existence. They have reduced a bunch of other notebooks in my collection to obsolescence. At least my family will benefit from the bunch of other notebook brands they'll be getting soon. Although they'll get really jealous when they see my Nanami notebooks.

  3. just finished my 1st ed Crossfield 5 Star Review

    Posted by on 1st Sep 2017

    I loved it with the crosses, but now that I need a new journal, I find it's no longer made...now made with full grid. So I'm trying the Writer this time around. I love everything about these notebooks and I hope whichever version is more popular keeps going!

  4. Gorgeous journal 5 Star Review

    Posted by on 12th Aug 2017

    So I purchased the B5 through Amazon and that is how I found this awesome website. The A5 is the perfect size with so many pages that I am over the moon. I love the enclosed ink blotting sheet very much appreciated (I purchased a set just because I know I will be using my extensive fountain collection in these journals. All in all, a great product at a great price with great customer service. Thank you!

    I am new to the crossfield, so I look forward to using this to (dare I say) improve my fountain pen writing.

    Very pleased :)

  5. Amazing 5 Star Review

    Posted by on 26th Jul 2017

    I really like the crossfield. The paper is amazing, the build is superb. My only gripe is that you've changed the print, or rather that there is no option to get the previous one. But the 5 stars are because the print is my personal preference, in all other aspects the book is great!
    I'm an architect and having the crossfield with only the crosses and no dotted lines allows me to ignore the grid when I don't need it for drawing but use it to align my writing. So it's the most versatile notebook I've ever had.
    If you decide to bring back the previous print I'll be eternally grateful.

  6. stunning journal 5 Star Review

    Posted by on 25th Jul 2017

    I bought this because I've seen so many people rave about theirs and the paper quality. I received mine this morning and I think I'm in love. I don't know what I'll be using this journal for yet but it's just stunning!!! I've never used tomoe river paper so I can't wait to get stuck in

  7. Love the Crossfield but... 4 Star Review

    Posted by on 9th Jul 2017

    Ivve used the Standard and two 1st Edition Crossfields and loved all three. I used the Standard as my art journal and it's excellent when using inks and watercolor. No bleedthrough! I've used the Crossfields as my one journal for bullet journaling, my planner for school and also for art journal. I may be in the minority but I did use the entire space available. The blue crosses were perfect for designing layouts without being obtrusive. I could live with the grids but the boxes would be useless and distracting for me. I hope you will consider bringing back the 1st edition or at least remove the boxes because I love everything about the 1st edition. I've recommended this journal to several of my students and colleagues who purchased them so they will also be disappointed with the new design.

  8. Amazing product! 5 Star Review

    Posted by on 3rd Jul 2017

    This was my second Nanami Seven Seas notebook - love the paper and the quality of the notebooks.

    Looking forward to my next one!

  9. I love, but I don't love the boxes 5 Star Review

    Posted by on 29th Jun 2017

    Everything about this journal is great and exactly what I've always been looking for but could never find...except for the wasted space that is the boxes at the top and bottom. Because of these boxes, the pages don't look as neat and streamlined and the writer is also being restricted due to the manufacturer deciding where to write and where not to. I would like to decide this. It would also be much more versatile if it were just crosses, not a full grid. Please bring back the first edition I've been hearing so much about - I'll be waiting.

    message from dave@nanamipaper:

    Hi, thanks for your feedback. However, most likely, we are not bringing back the Crossfield. This will most likely be the last run.

  10. Love this! 4 Star Review

    Posted by on 23rd Jun 2017

    Love this journal - however, would love it if they brought back the crosses again - I love the paper and the grid but the best one was the little crosses. Regardless, the quality is awesome - I just wish it would come back with the little cross option for A5 and Café.

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