Idea: 20
Tuesday, 20 January 2015
By. Francis Pedraza

Loose Leaf

— Save your paper!

Do you use paper — loose leaf, post-its, notebooks, or other formats — for work or art? Finally, instead of throwing it away or storing it boxes, mail it to Loose Leaf for storage, scanning, and digital access — anytime.

Paper. I still use paper. Full-size notebooks, pocket-size notebooks, loose leaf pages, post-its. Why? As a minimalist, it’s ironic. Even embarassing, given my handwriting. Nevertheless, paper is elegant technology. Although digital input is becoming easier, paper still has advantages. It may take years, even decades, before digital input has surpassed paper in every possible dimension. For long-form writing, typing is better. But for kinesthetic thinking, jotting down quick notes or ideas, generating creative associations with mind-maps, or sketching — digital doesn’t even come close. Even though the technology is millenia old, it’s going to be very hard to replace the texture, the gestures, the free-flow features of writing on paper in three-dimensional space. Despite reports to the contrary, paper is very much alive. Heck, Moleskine commands a nearly $300M valuation! If selling over-priced notebooks results in an IPO, it’s not just me — there’s a market for this stuff.

So use paper. But then what? Throw it away? Store on a shelf, in a box? Scan to Evernote or Dropbox? None of these options are good. Especially the latter. For starters, big scan files clog up Evernote and Dropbox, take up lots of storage space on your account, and mixed in with everything else, are an organizational mess. Buying a proper ScanSnap costs nearly $500, yet another eye-sore device to plug-in, with clunky software, which only accepts loose leaf paper, so tear sheets out of your notebook one-at-a-time, feed them in, scan them, and in the end, image quality is a dissapointment — all that beautiful, magical texture is flattened into a 2D black-and-white pancake.

There’s a better way. Save your paper! Sign up for Loose Leaf and we’ll send you pre-paid envelopes, so when you’re done, just drop your latest notebook in the mailbox. Each envelope is specially designed to protect your notebook while it is in the mail. Once it arrives at our facility, we use a state-of-the-art industrial scanner to take the highest quality scan possible of each page, doing our best to preserve some of the paper magic in digital form. Then we extract index words with OCR, so you can search, browse and read your notebooks, anytime, anywhere, from our mobile and web apps. These apps are designed to make your notebooks look gorgeous on a screen, and to make it really easy to organize and sort them. And finally, we store them for you, safely and with great care, as if it was a National Treasure. Yes, we put them in a box, but not just any box. Beautiful boxes that honor the almost-sacred life of words, your words. If you ever want any of your notebooks or papers back, just request them from the app, and we’ll send them your way.

Build a brand that honors the creative potential of a blank canvas.


$10 a month, $99 a year, or $1000 lifetime memberships.
Up-sells: sell pencils, pens, art supplies, books, paper, notebooks, etc.


Boxbee (urban storage valet), Outbox (Evan, be our special guest for today’s thread! Know you learned a lot about the logistics of this.)


Brand directions discarded in favor of LooseLeaf:
- Blank Canvas
- Archīvum
- Vellum
- Anthology
- 8.5x11