Review & Compare | Chic Sparrow & Foxy Fix Notebook Covers

The Traveler’s Notebook craze has hooked me in at last!  I’ve seen so many beautiful and intriguing Traveler’s Notebook posts from the Planner Community on Instagram over the past year and I wanted to see what the fuss was all about, so I looked into different companies that provide custom made leather notebook covers.  In this post I share a detailed look at a few of the products from two small business artisans.


I settled on two of the more prevalently “grammed” companies, including Chic Sparrow (top left) and Foxy Fix (top right).  Both companies were founded and are run by creative and talented women who saw an opportunity to offer custom leather pieces based on the ever popular Midori Traveler’s Notebook (which I will discuss in detail soon).  The Traveler’s Notebook is a simple leather outer cover with a basic elastic strap and spine system that allows users to keep anywhere from one to three journals inside.  Journals are easy to swap out and change up.  The Midori Traveler’s Notebook comes in two sizes: regular at 5″ wide x 8.5″ high and passport at 4″ wide x 5″ high.  It is available in two colors, brown and black, with no add-on customizable features to the cover itself.

One of the great things about small business Traveler’s Notebook providers is that they offer more than just the two sizes of notebook covers in a variety of leather types and colors.  These are sometimes referred to as fauxdori’s.  You can also opt in to add extra built in features such as pen loops, pockets, and even personalization with leather stamping.  I wanted to get a sense of what kind of products Chic Sparrow and Foxy Fix offered, so I ordered a couple covers with different customization features.

Chic Sparrow

Chic Sparrow is a family run business that was established just one year ago in February of 2014.  They offer gorgeous high quality leather pieces, including traveler’s style notebooks as well as bags.  It’s amazing to see how much their offerings have grown and changed even from the time that I ordered these pieces just less than two months ago!

Chic Sparrow currently offers five journal sizes: pocket, personal, narrow, wide, and extra wide.  There are four types of classic leathers and five deluxe leathers to choose from in a range of colors.  You can opt for additional features like custom stitching, a riveted pen loop, and even an inscription of up to 15 characters stamped onto the leather.  You can also now order a completely custom journal using their VIP Service, which is made to your exact specifications, including beautiful artwork.


I placed two separate order from Chic Sparrow.  The first one, a pocket size journal in the Creme Brûlée leather, took about two weeks to ship from the order date, while the second one, a narrow journal in Brazilian Bliss leather, shipped out in just four days.  The discrepancy in time is due to the fact that I opted for custom add-on features in the pocket size.  They arrived in bubble mailers via USPS.  Both were packaged in a muslin drawstring bag with the Chic Sparrow stamp and came wrapped in tissue with a typed thank you note as well as a care card.


The pocket journal in Creme Brûlée leather measures 4.25″ wide x 6″ tall, making it slightly bigger than the Midori passport size.  I opted for the creme brûlée color leather with white contrast stitching and added pockets in a dark brown leather to the interior, which includes a pen loop.  I was also able to choose a center back closure.  It came with four elastic straps to accommodate journals.


The Chic Sparrow pocket notebooks are fillable with both Moleskine and Field Notes journals.  Here you can see what the notebook looks like with four journals inside.  The pocket notebook is quite roomy and could certainly hold even more.  When I ordered my pocket notebook, Chic Sparrow didn’t offer the pre-set deluxe option that they do now.  My notebook cost $50.98 (the new pre-set option costs $54.99).


The other journal I ordered from Chic Sparrow is a narrow size in the Brazilian Bliss leather.  This is the most comparable to the Midori regular notebook, measuring  5″ wide by 8.5″ tall.  It’s just half an inch wider than the Midori.  I didn’t get any extra bells and whistles in this one as I wanted to see what their basic notebook cover was like.  Here you can see the structure is the same as the pocket, but with the closure strap located in the center of the back cover, as is typical in most traveler’s notebooks.  It appears that Chic Sparrow now offers only center back closure (like shown with the pocket) for all notebook types.  Notably, they are not offering this leather option at the moment.  It is a much more stiff and rugged leather, with a beautiful soft finish in the stunning sapphire color.


The narrow notebook accepts standard Midori inserts.  I put three in as well as a zip envelope sleeve, but I could have definitely fit a fourth, although this notebook cover is significantly less roomy than the pocket size.  It cost $65.99.

Foxy Fix

The Foxy Fix Etsy shop is run by Kelly who started her business just five months ago in December 2014.  Kelly’s offerings have also grown and changed in that time and she now sells leather iPad and Kindle covers as well as journal inserts in addition to her beautiful leather notebook covers.  The traveler’s notebook market is booming!

Foxy Fix currently offers nine notebook sizes: extra small, passport, pocket slim, pocket, regular, regular extra room, slim, wide, and extra wide.   There are three leather options including regular, bay, and wanderlust.  You can opt for custom add-on features such as a built in pen loop, a charm on the strap, or monogram stamping (only available on some types of leather).


I ordered two notebooks from Foxy Fix at once so they arrived in one shipment.  They came packaged in a flat rate USPS Priority Mail envelope.  The pocket size notebook was placed inside the regular one, which was wrapped in tissue and tied with a leather bow.  This bundle was set in a plastic bag for protection in transit.  My package arrived exactly one week after I placed the order.


I purchased the pocket size notebook in the brown Wanderlust leather.  It has such a great feel and smell!  With Foxy Fix journals, you can customize the binding (number of cords along the spine: one, two, or four), strap (one or two), and the elastic color.  I thought the mint color (option N) would be a nice pop against the chocolate brown leather.  For additional fees you can also add a charm to your strap and a built in pen loop.


The pocket size is 4″ wide by 6″ high and accommodates 3.5″ x 5.5″ notebooks.  I filled it with a combination of Moleskine and Field Notes journals.  Four fit comfortably inside the notebook cover with room to spare.  My pocket notebook cost $35.


I also ordered a regular size notebook in Foxy Fix’s standard leather which is thinner, glossier, and more rigid than the Wanderlust.  I love this bright blue color!  I thought azure would pair nicely with the light blue elastic.


The regular size notebook cover measures 4.75″ x 8.75″ and accommodates 4.5″ x 8.5″ notebooks.  I filled it with three Midori journals as well as a credit card holder and there is still room for more.  It cost $45.


Please be advised that some of the links provided are affiliate links and I do receive a small commission if you make a purchase using those links.  This does not cost you any extra when you make a purchase.  I very much appreciate your support of this blog in doing so!

One of the things I love most about these notebook providers is that the pocket size allows you to use Moleskine and Field Notes inserts.  They come in a variety of stylesand are significantly less expensive than Midori notebooks.  Sadly, they’re not interchangeable because of the difference in size.  Here are a few of my favorite pocket size notebooks:

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Both Chic Sparrow and Foxy Fix offer beautiful, handmade pieces in a variety of colors and styles that can suit all personality types and notebook needs.  I highly recommend both companies.  As you can see, they are quite pricey, with Chic Sparrow pricing a bit higher than Foxy Fix, especially with the deluxe options.  I find that Foxy Fix has the most comparable prices to Midori for notebook covers.  Please keep in mind when ordering that these are small businesses that make each piece by hand.  Store stocks are updated as available and you have a better chance of getting what you want when you place your order earlier in the day.  If the leather you had your eye on is out of stock, keep checking back.

It’s giveaway time! I wanted to share the Chic Sparrow and Foxy Fix love since I ordered these mainly to review and not for personal use (you’ll see the Midori I am using soon!).  The Chic Sparrow & Foxy Fix Giveaway will run until Friday, May 8, 2015 at 6 PM CT.  The giveaway is open internationally.  All entrants under the age of 18 must have parental permission to enter.  FOUR winners will receive one of the bundles in the photo below.  You can specify when entering which bundle you would like in the event that you win:


1. Chic Sparrow Pocket in Creme Brulee leather with four Field Notes inserts and Moleskine Daily Planner

2. Chic Sparrow Regular in Brazilian Bliss leather (sapphire) with three Midori notebooks and one Midori Zip envelope

3. Foxy Fix Regular in Regular leather (azure) with three Midori notebooks and Midori credit card sleeve.

4. Foxy Fix Pocket in Wanderlust leather (brown) with  9 Moleskine notebooks, one Field Notes notebook, and extra elastic.

You can enter by following the directions in the Rafflecopter widget posted below (check out this blog post for more information on entering Rafflecopter giveaways).  I’ll announce the winners on THIS blog post and contact them directly through email, as always.  Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sometimes Rafflecopter experiences technical difficulties. If you can’t enter for some reason, try again later and it will probably work.

As I mentioned, I’ll be sharing a closer look at the Midori Traveler’s Notebooks next, including a coordinating video where I compare Midori to Chic Sparrow and Foxy Fix.  Stay tuned!  I would love to know if you use a traveler’s style notebook, what you use, and how you like it if you care to share.
Happy Journaling!


 * Post contains affiliate links.  This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are genuinely my own. *


41 thoughts on “Review & Compare | Chic Sparrow & Foxy Fix Notebook Covers”

  1. I’d be very interested in seeing you review these on YouTube. I had the original Midori but I sold it as I didn’t find it wide enough or bigger enough to accommodate my need. I now have Jonelifish fauxdori which I feel are the best fauxdori available. The leather is brilliant but it’s the craft and art that goes into producing them. A wide variety of colours, styles, sizes and finishes including painted and carved and more options. If you were to consider buying one for your personal use then I would recommend Jonel fiercely. (Please note she is extremely busy and does have a wait list)

  2. Thank you so much for the giveaway opportunity. I’ve been dying to check out these traveler’s notebooks and currently have just been using a regular notebook for journaling. I love Bundle # 4 it looks just beautifully lush! Love your reviews, you’re always honest and bring a sens of fun to all of them! Thank you again

  3. Awesome comparison.

    Just wanted to let you know, I’m not seeing anywhere on the rafflecopter giveaway that lets you say which of the 4 you would prefer in the case that you win.

    1. I realize my mistake in not including this as the poll option. It is fixed now. If you already entered and you’re randomly selected as a winner I will find out which bundle you’d like when I email.

  4. I’m so glad you did this review and that there’ll be even more to follow. I’ve been dying to get my hands on one of these beauts but with internetional shipping and being just a student I couldn’t really afford any. thanks so much for the giveaway opportunity. I would just scream with happiness if I won. I would love bundle 1 or 3. but honestly – they are all gorgeous. I can’t wait to see how you set up your midori!!

  5. Wow! What a thorough review and post…you really put a lot of work into this. I haven’t purchased anything from these lovey ladies but their products sure are pretty. Thank you so much for all the into!

  6. Thanks for the giveaway! This is amazing and would be perfect as we travel ever year and it would be lovely to store all the keepsakes in ONE place:)

  7. Thanks for posting your review! My husband uses Field Notes like crazy for work and this will make a perfect Father’s Day present for him! I ordered from Foxy Fix!

  8. My favorite part of the fauxdori is that I can use notebooks with no rings or spiral! All the bundles are beautiful but my favorites are #1 and #1. Thanks for sharing this information. 🙂

  9. I hadn’t heard of these before, but I think my hubby would enjoy having one. It might be interesting to try this next year instead of a larger planner. That said, I’m most interested in #1, but also like the blue ones.

  10. Thank you for this wonderful review and comparison.
    The are lovely Noteboks ,I ve entered your giveaway, crss my fingers.
    If I have the chance to win, I d love to send the prize for my father.
    So I cros my fingers..
    And wish you a fab weekend!

  11. Hey Jen,

    Thanks for the detailed review! Love your videos. You are a sweetheart. You are always so kind and positive. I entered the giveaway and just wanted to ask what rafflecoptor says when your entry is submitted. I followed all the instructions but it didn’t confirm if I was entered. Does a specific message come up when you are done? Maybe someone who entered this can help.

    Also, would love to see a video on this if possible. The posting schedule you have seems to be working really well 🙂 Do you find it a better fit for you then your previous schedule?

    Have a great weekend to you, Don, and winne 🙂


    1. No, there’s no confirmation. Just make sure after you login thru email or facebook that you answer the poll question and then if you like you can enter thru following me on the social media listed as well. Easy peasy!

      1. Awesome! I am also a fan of the planner community so these kind of detailed videos are great. Plus, it’s always fun to learn about something new.

        Here are some of my planner recommendations: (not affiliated with any of these companies in any way, this is just my own personal recommendation):

        1)May Designs

        2)Passion Planner

        3)Bullet Journal (this is better as a journal for To-Do’s lists, events, and any kind of specific planning)

  12. Thanks for writing such a detailed post. Great to see the different options available and to be able to support smaller businesses too. Thanks so much for the giveaway, really generous of you xx

  13. Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts on the Chic Sparrow, Foxy Fix and the Mid original notebook covers helped out alot on making a decision. Great review!

  14. Thank you for your post. I have been researching the Midori and Fauxdori journals and appreciate your thoroughness. I also appreciate the opportunity to win one!

  15. I always enjoy your product comparisons! Seriously… the amount of effort you put into them to be thorough shows every time. And I also love that you are so generous with your subscribers, Thank you so so much, Jen!

  16. I love my Midori passport and it goes everywhere with me. I’ve been contemplating the FN size. I really enjoyed your review of these.

  17. Thanks for the post and the video! I’ve been curious about the MTN for a while and really didn’t know much about the function of it. I loved the explanations and comparisons!

  18. I love the smaller sized planners. I really like the idea of having the one cover then just changing the booklets inside. I’ve always tried to keep a paper journal but for some reason after a day or two I end up forgetting all about it then try to mad-rush fill it in when it’s time to come home! I think these smaller sized ones would be great as they’d fit into my bag/purse so I could try and journal as I go, maybe I’d have more luck!

    Sarah 🙂
    Saloca in Wonderland

  19. Hello Jen
    Thank you so much for taking the time to investigate planner and now journal products…it has been really helpful to me. I found your blog I think only yesterday and I am really benefiting from it. Am sorting through my own planner and trying new ideas because of your creative work. Good job and many thanks!

  20. Thanks for doing this! I’ve been following Chic Sparrow for a while but Foxy Fix is new to me. Those blue covers are beautiful! I’ve been using the inserts for a month now without a cover, just to see if I like the size, and I think I’m ready to take the plunge and commit. I have my monthly calendar, a weekly calendar with a to-do list, and blog ideas in the 3 inserts.

  21. Hi Jen, I watched the video and the blogpost. So it looks like you like the Midori the best out of all the ones you compared? Is it just because of the thinness of the leather. I just don’t like it when the edges of my notebooks are not covered by the leather. I’m just curious. I’m sure all of them have their pros and cons 🙂

    1. I do prefer the Midori passport mainly because of the total size but also the thickness of the leather. If you want a notebook that will cover all of the journals I recommend trying a fauxdori that’s made a bit wider.

  22. Hi Jen! I linked here from your YouTube video. I have only recently gained interest in Midori notebooks and found your video when looking for info! My first one is on the way to me courtesy of a friend that is hooked on this craze as well. I’m excited–cannot wait! Thanks for the info and the chance to win some sweet items with this giveaway! <3

    1. Winners should be displayed within the Rafflecopter widget embedded on this page. They have been contacted directly by me through email.

  23. Jen,

    Many thanks for composing such a wonderfully thorough and detailed review, I am quite intrigued and am now trying to decide between the passport size Midori and the pocket size FoxyDori. Are you able to advise how the two differ in size and quality of the leather?

    1. The passport Midori is smaller than the pocket FoxyDori. The leathers are both nice quality but the Midori is thinner than the Foxy. Hope this helps!

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