04 June 2012

Filofax Malden Compact Zipped Organiser

When I heard that there was going to be a Compact Malden released this year I was quite interested....  no make that excited! Initially details of this new model were quite hard to come by. There had been no mention of this particular model to the UK trade, but a sample appeared at a German Trade show and one of our 'fans' sent me some details about it.

At that point I thought may be it will only for sale in France and Germany, but at the time of writing it is still not appeared on either site. The next I heard was that the Compact Maldens in Pocket and Personal size had been spotted in store at City Organiser... winner!

So it will be no surprise that I bought a personal size one... no self control. So before I set it up to my own liking I thought I would write a quick review of this organiser so you can see it for your self and see if you like it or not.

Here it is in Ochre, it is also available in purple... sorry not my colour really. I quite like the colour I have also picked up a used Personal Malden in the same colour!

The leather is the gorgeous soft buttery leather we have become used to with the Malden, and it has that smell that is just so pleasant... well compared to any of the plastic organisers! 

So the front is plain with detail stitching just at the outer edge. The name 'Filofax' is embossed on the edge on the front. The zipper has a nice leather tab.


On the back there is a vertical pocket which you could use for receipts or notes. The pocket is lined with a textile material. 


Opening up the Malden, and removing the contents, it lays flat with the minimum of training. I'm sure it will get better as the leather wears in a bit.  It is equipped with 15mm rings, this compares to 23mm for a normal Personal Malden. My Slimline Personal Finsbury has only 11mm rings, although some Slimlines do have 13mm. So page capacity will be limited slightly.

In the back cover there is cut out pocket and a full elasticated pen loop, which is inside the organiser when zipped up. One word of caution about the pen loop, although it is elasticated, don't use too big a pen because unlike a clasp closure organiser the pen has to sit quite close to the index tabs. I've found my slim Frixion pen works best inside this organiser.

On the left hand cover you have a major set of pockets which are best explained on their own.


So to start with on the left hand side there are a total of 14 card slots... yes that's fourteen! Six on view in two banks of three. 


Then on the reverse side there are another four, and another four in the back most section. There is also a full length pocket in the back section and because this whole section is gusseted in leather you can keep documents between the credit card holders and the zip pocket too. In the middle there is the zipped pocket for coins or documents



The above additional photograph was taken after setting it up. Cards in the front holders, UK bank notes in the divider behind, then coins in the pocket, and passport and paper driving license in the back section, it does close ok, but as pointed out in the comments you have to distribute the coins evenly.  

The organiser came with a fairly typical set of inserts:
  • Transparent flyleaf
  • 6 month week on two pages diary in multi language for 2012. 
  • 12 month one of the same format for 2013
  • A-Z two letter per tab index
  • To Do sheets
  • Address sheets
  • Coloured lined note paper. 
There are no section dividers or Today page markers, this seems to be a standard fill for the compact size Filofax.  I will be transferring my Week on One page diary from my current Personal Malden in to this organiser when I set it up. I should also be able to add my address pages as well from the same organiser. I'm not sure yet about adding my wallet contents although I've tried the contents for size, it all fits in, but it becomes quite heavy with coins in it, my Filofax Malden wallet does fit in my pocket quite neatly, if I'm travelling without my shoulder bag.

Now if you would like to buy a compact zipped Malden they come in Personal size in Purple and Ochre and Pocket size. The Pocket size is also in 15mm rings and is also available in Purple and Ochre. They are available at City Organiser and possibly other Filofax stores.

After finishing my photos of the compact Malden I thought I would compare it to other personal size organisers in my collection. Which might prompt the question 'what size is that'?

So in this picture from left to right. Cuban Zip (30 mm rings), Malden Compact Zip (15mm rings), Malden Personal (23mm rings), Finsbury Slimline (11mm rings)  As you can see the Compact Zip is bigger than a clasp Malden, which in turn is bigger than the Slimline. 


Looking at them in profile in the photo below the are stacked from thin to thick (Slimline, Compact, Personal, Personal Zip)


Finally, here is my updated Malden family.



35 comments:

  1. Fantastic review Steve!! Thanks for showing so much detail in the photos. PS I love your Malden family portrait!

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  2. The zip makes this seem a natural for travel.

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  3. Mine arrived on Saturday from City Organiser, amazing service as usual. I love it! I usually carry a big purse anyway not much smaller than the compact. I use an A5 which stays at home and have been struggling with portability and this is the perfect solution for me. I just keep a wpp note paper and important numbers. I can even put a notepad on the internal back pocket as per a regular Malden. Jen

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  4. Thank you for review Steve. It's great option for wallet. I just don`t like the elasticated loops. I know you can fit most of the pens in those, but it looks cheap. I can`t help myself :o( I know it`s not just Malden problem. Hope that Filofax will come with better solution in future.

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  5. It looks great. I've been using the Pennybridge as my purse/out and about filo, and might upgrade if they bring out a colour I like.

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  6. I like the look of this.... but it needs to be red!

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  7. This is an interesting addition so thank you for this review Steve. I like to use a purse for my cash and cards) similar to this and would be interested if UK bank notes sit in the front pocket. It looks very like my purse, but with the addition of some rings for notes etc. I have to say my purse is a little prettier than this (being pink!) but a Malden one is very tempting as the quality is there.

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    1. If I get a chance today I will put some bank notes in the pockets and add them to the post.

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    2. Another picture and some notes added, it takes UK £20 and £10 without any problems Euronotes are smaller!

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  8. I've been waiting for this to be available for a while. I'm using a Slimline as a purse now, and this looks like a really nice alternate to that. The ochre will match my personal Ochre!

    I would love to see how you use it with your cards and inserts in it. (: Thanks for the review!

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  9. Wow, surprising, it is the exact same layout as the Pennybridge !

    I am currently the Pennybridge quite successfully, but indeed, beware of the pen loop : I have a Fischer Space Pen, and once slotted in the pen loop, it is sometimes hard to get the zip "over" the pen loop to open and close the organizer.

    Also, I don't use any dividers as the pen, once in the pen loop, is completely in the way and is crushing them. So I simply gave up and put the space pen "above" the pages, "floating". I just have remember there is a loose pen each time I open it, but that's not hard to remember :)

    Moreover, if you have lots of coins, you might want to ensure they are all "horizontally" spread in the coins compartiment, before closing the organizer: otherwise, you might have an odd buldge.

    But I found that were two minors caveats, I really like the Pennybridge, and now, should I want to venture on the side of leather organizer, I think this one might work pretty well and look much better that the Pennybridge. A very nice upgrade, I foresee :)

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    1. Have you tried dividers with the tabs at the top - or even bottom? Seems a shame to not be able to use the loop at all.

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  10. This makes me really want one, though I think I'd like to see the purple colour first; as that's the colour I'm missing from my Filofax collection really. Might have to head down to the CO store later this month...!

    I've never really liked zipped Filofaxes but for some reason, this one seems quite nice? Though, I may wait til the next lot of Temperley Filofaxes as I do still miss my Affair and look forward to seeing the new collection later this year.

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  11. Will this be sold in the United States? The shipping from England is astronomical. Thanks.

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  12. Thanks for a great review, Steve.
    I agree with angela that I'm not normally a fan of zipped filos, but this looks lovely. I'm guessing the fact it's a Malden means I'm biased in its favour anyway :)

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  13. I'm so tempted to buy this in pocket... but then it would be my third order from CO within a week... wouldn't that be just a bit crazy?!

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  14. Wow, wow, wow!!! I'm using the Pennybridge as my wallet at the moment, but am now ridiculously tempted...

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  15. I agree with Savannah I hope they bring it to the US website. The compact is my favorite size, but I just got my A5 malden and I am already in love.....not too sure about the zip though. Does it have the same 'floppyness' as the snap maldens Steve?

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    1. Not quite the same because of its construction, but it is very soft and fairly supple and does lay flat. Far better than my Cuban zip which I have to retrain every time I use it!

      I'm finding it a great partner to my A5 Malden...

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  16. I love that color, if I had to do my A5 purchase over I'd get that color

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  17. Realli nice. I like the old-school-look of the Malden-line. Seems they´re really quite popular!!!

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  18. Great post Steve. Am not a Malden fan (as yet!) but this post has made me look at it in a whole new perspective since I do use my personal finchley for my credit cards and notes.

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  19. Hi Steve....I'm not really a fan of compacts, but I think this is a 8really* well-designed binder. Personally I think I'd stick with my Personal ochre Malden, purely because it's a bit larger for notes etc, but if I *did* want a compact this would be it. Amazing number of card slots, probably still not enough, but it's hard to see how this could be beaten. Like most people I have an enormous number of cards to carry round, and I use a series of 3-up credit card holders in the back of the main body of the organiser to do this, with only my four most-used cards inside the front cover of the Personal Malden, but it works fine for me.

    Great review, great photos....thank you

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  20. Just an update and some good word-of-mouth for The Pen Shop in Cardiff.....

    We went to Cardiff on Saturday with a list of converters and nibs needed (I decided not to take advantage of Mrs P's offer of the Cross fountain pen for now, as I have so many already), and Debbie at The Pen Shop was *excellent*. So was Adam, to whom I spoke on Friday but who was on his day off by Saturday. They are knowledgeable, helpful, willing to chat pens and stationery ad infinitum, and they also sell Paperblanks notebooks and a small range of FF products (hurrah! that puts this post on-topic!). I came away with two Parker and one Waterman converters, and my favourite Waterman pre-2000 fountain pen is now on its way to Scotland (yes really) to have the nib changed and made less 'wet'. Results all round. The only problem was I forgot to get blotting paper....ah well, I guess I'll just have to go back :)

    The Pen Shop is in the St Davids Centre in the centre of Cardiff, and is well worth a visit if you're west of the Severn Bridge......stationery/writing implement meet-up in Cardiff, anyone? :)

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  21. @David Popely - would I be correct in thinking your pen is off to see Eric Wilson in Edinburgh? He's done some nice work on a couple of my pens... I can also recommend a chap called John Sorowka in Oxford who is a superb nib technician and has come close to working miracles as far as I'm concerned.

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    1. I don't know the name of the technician - h does work for branches of the Pen Shop around the country (i know this because Debbie in Cardiff told me so) - what a dream job!

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  22. Something I realised this evening. Because the compact zip doesn't have a clasp, you can use this organiser the other way around, so the external pocket could be on the front and the pen loop on the front instead of the back.

    The Cuban Zip is configured in this way with it's external pocket on the front.

    So if you prefer the configuration the other way around it is as simple as opening the rings changing the pages around and putting them back in again... I will try it for a day or two and see which way works better for me.

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  23. Aaaaah! Just bought one! My tenth Filofax. think this could be "the one"!

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  24. Great review, Steve! I'm not one for zipped binders, but if I were in the market, this would be a big contender. Do you know if there are plans for a compact non-zipped Malden? That would make me very happy.

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  25. This is like PERFECT! They're not going to be sending to the US? Is it just too classy for them or what? Not enough lace and not ugly enough?? STUPID FILOFAX. They almost has me back...

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  26. Since I read this post last night I've been pondering it, and I think I'm going to buy one and sell my personal Malden. I like the sleek design of the compact. Off to order one now!

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  27. Thanks for the review, I was curious about how it looks inside, since I can't find pictures of it on either the Swedish nor the UK Filofax sites.

    I think it will work well as a wallet and portable notebook! Or I can just buy a Flex Pocket for notes and use a regular wallet, I can't decide, haha :D

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  28. I'm dying to get one of these but can't find them in the U.S. and the link to City Organiser says we don't have permission to view the site :-(

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    1. Sadly City Organiser went out of business earlier this year.

      They are still trading on their Amazon shop
      http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/browse.html?ie=UTF8&marketplaceID=A1F83G8C2ARO7P&me=A3TKP6VQEOHUNJ#/ref=sr_nr_p_4_1?me=A3TKP6VQEOHUNJ&rh=p_4%3AFilofax&ie=UTF8&qid=1373399731

      They have got some Pennybridge zip compacts, similar in design to the Malden but not in leather.

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