Beside your 1986 ‘Electric Swan’ Trapper Keeper with bits of plastic falling off it, there are thousands of notebook, notepad, journal, planner and portfolio options to the point it’s hard to stand out. Yet,  HappyEarth Notebooks has managed to do just that with their arguably unique take on a centuries-old method for trapping bits of paper.

From their name, it’s obvious the Taiwan-based company is taking an environmentally friendly angle. *slow claps* Nothing wrong with companies trying to make a bit of money out of this eco-friendly schtick, but that’s not what’s so different.

What they’ve done is create a simple design that, in turns, allows you to create your own custom notebook. The notebook consists of two things–a paperboard frame and two binder clips. Simple. From there, you add your own paper–blank or printed using one of their various templates.

Here’s how it breaks down:

Regardless of how you want to use the notebook, the two binder clips keep any standard 8.5″ x 11 folded letter paper in place and (bonus playa) the binder clip tails can be removed to keep it all in place once filled. You never thought an organized life could be so simple, did you? Another purpose of the notebook? Create a simple option to gather loose papers or reuse scrap you don’t need anymore. Like so:


By now you’re likely thinking, given a minimal amount of effort, anyone with a cereal box and basic cutting skills could make the exact same thing for a fraction of the cost. And given HappyEarth is all about protecting our doomed and dying earth, they probably won’t mind if you re-purpose the back of ALL your co-worker’s notepads. In fact, there are a lot of ways to do it.

Customizable notebookHowever, if you’re still curious about this notebook, you can drop by their website, where you can find the notebook templates and more product details, or you can pick up a 2-pack over at Amazon for $34.99. Really though, I’m guessing you’ve made something similar? I’m thinking of two old license plates I could rescue from destroying the earth.

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Josh is founder and editor at, founder at Aimsift Inc., and co-founder of EvD Media. He is involved in engineering, design, visualization, the technology making it happen, and the content developed around it. He is a SolidWorks Certified Professional and excels at falling awkwardly.