19 May 2011

Flex by Filofax - Review Part 2

Thanks for all the great feed back on the review of the Flex by Filofax, some of you have asked some questions, so I thought it best to add the answers to these to a separate post.

A couple of points to clarify, although I compared the Flex to my A5 Malden, the cover of the Flex is not made from leather. It's made in some form of synthetic material, but it has the look and feel of leather....but not the smell!!! As you will have seen from the photos, the detail in the stitching is very good, very close in fact to the stitching on the Malden. But in your hands you would know it wasn't leather straight away.  However, I think it is still very well made.

The pockets that the inserts fit in to on the A5 (page size 14.8 x 21 cm) Flex are 21.5 cm tall, the pockets on the Pocket size (page size 8 x 12 cm) 12.5 cm tall.

Weight wise with the A5 Flex fitted with the thin note book and the diary I would estimate it to be lighter than my Malden A5. With the A5 Flex fitted with the thick (256 page) note book and diary I would say it was slightly heavier than my A5 Malden. Although you will have to trust my judgement on that one, I don't have access to scales at this moment in time. I can measure them more accurately in a couple of days time.

Anyway some more pictures:

In this first picture is my A5 Malden at the top... if you need a clue... it is the one with (skinny) rings! and below it is the A5 Flex, with the diary (144 pages) and the thin notebook. (80 pages) In this picture both are inserted in to the inner pockets. Both overlap each other when open.

In this next picture again the same inserts in the Flex, except this time they are inserted in to the outer pockets, so when both are open they would both be fully visible (double page).

As you can see it makes no difference to the thickness and the pen holder (not shown) will still fit in an inner or outer pocket, this lets you have the pen in the middle or outside (like the Malden).

It is also possible to have one insert in an inner pocket and the other on an outer pocket. Like in this picture:

In this picture, I've changed the notebook for the thick (256 page) size and still with the diary insert. I had it set up as Diary in the back cover (on the right) and notebook in the front cover (on the left), but you could have it the other way around just as easily. 

This final picture shows the above set up laying flat, as you can see there is still a reasonable gap in the middle for the pen holder to sit in. 

People have asked about availability. Now available on the Filofax UK website.

If you have any more questions add them in to the comments and I will do my best to answer them, although there might be a bit of a delay as I'm travelling back to France tomorrow.

Although when I'm back in France I'm going to investigate doing a video review of the Flex, because I'm sure that will answer some more of your questions or confirm things slightly better.


  1. look forward to your vid on it :-)

    is the magenta a realy nice one in real life? if that makes sence?

  2. Yes I'm not promising something up to your standards! But I'm going to have a go!!

    The magenta isn't a bright pink, or a dull red it is closer I would say to raspberry may be a bit brighter than that.

    I will try to take a more natural light photo on my normal camera when I get back to France at the weekend. The photos so far have been done indoors in my hotel room and with my small digital point and shoot.

  3. This is a really great system. I think it is a really good "setup" for my girlfriend. But that means, there will be no Deco in our household :(

    Thanks a lot, Thomas

  4. This is really interesting, thanks for a great review! Do we know how much they are likely to cost?

  5. Hi Steve,

    The full range is in both the London flagship stores.... I know because I couldn't resist after reading your post, and I ran down to Mayfair at lunchtime and bought a Slate A5 + lots of inserts!

    Absolutely loving it - it's the Filofax solution I've been looking for, as since getting the iPad, I have only been using my A5 Filo for note taking and todos etc. This now does the job in a much slimmer format, but still lovely big A5 pages.

    So happy with it - really thrilled.

  6. @Nellie, take a look at the price list in part 1 of the review here:


    @Francesca I hope you mentioned Philofaxy when you raided the Conduit Store!! But I'm pleased you like them, I think it will prove quite popular.

  7. Initially I was not taken by this product but now I am quite intrigued as it could work quite effectively as a notebook for me.
    Hmmmmmmm I shall wait on your video though.
    Excellent post :-)

  8. Steve - my standards arnt all that good, i will do mine as soon as i get one, i cannot wait to get it!

    Oh ok, im still getting it in that colour, i am a pink person! :-)

    Ahhh cool i thought they were quite good, thank you, will they be on flickr, soo excited!!!!

    I cannot wait for it to come online!!!

  9. Steve - have a nice drive back :-)

  10. I cannot wait until its avalible online :-( im too excited!!!! How much longer??

  11. Hi Steve -

    If you were sitting at a normal conference-type table at a business meeting, would the A5 Flex open too wide to have it right in front of you for note taking? Or would you have to angle it to keep from nudging the person next you (who should NOT be nudged)?

  12. Hi Robin
    OK if you were in that situation you could quickly reconfigure your Flex to use one or both inside slots, which would narrow the whole thing down. Then when your meeting is over and you have desk room again you move your inserts back to the outside slots again. They move in and out very easily and because they are 'bound' as opposed to loose leaf they won't change in order of the pages or lose any pages.


  13. Neal Street Filofax store in London have their new display in place and stocks of the Flex...

  14. OK if you have any 'readers questions' I think I will mop them all up with one final part on this product.

    Please post your questions in the next day or so. Thanks


  15. Dear Steve,

    Thanks for the great detailed review and the quality pictures, espcially as the Flex is quite insufficiently displayed and explained on the Filofax website.

    Flex sounds like a fantastic product - I have been looking hard for a 'diary cover' for a standard A5 diary with extra pockets for bits and bobs, and was amazed how difficult it is to find something like that. Hopefully the Flex will make my organising fantasies come true.

    I am confused/concerned about one thing: the size of the pockets. You say that at 20.5cm height they are slightly smaller than the height of a standard A5 page. This would imply that neither a standard A5 diary nor a booklet printed using standard A4 paper could be slotted into the Flex pockets without cutting the insertion pages to reduce their height. However, elsewhere (the post about converting Flex inserts to Filofax pages) you have said that the Flex inserts themselves are exactly 21cm high - how is this possible?? I would be very grateful if you could clarify.

    Ideally I'd like a product I could slot anything A5 into, not just the Filofax inserts (which are relatively expensive, and in the case of the diary, not quite suitable to my needs). Although I'm prepared to work around and cut the cover of my £1 diary to make it fit if necessary...

    Apart from this issue, the Flex seems the ideal product to me. One minor improvement might be to make one of the pockets (e.g. the larger one below the credit card slots) transparent to show the contents.

    Thanks and best wishes,

  16. Dannie
    Sorry my mistake, I've remeasured the cover on the A5 Flex and it is in fact A5 size. I've amended the post.

  17. Oh, that's great news. I suppose it will be a tight fit and not fit many diaries where the cover is slightly bigger than the pages, but it will still be a lot better than if the pockets were smaller than actual A5.

    Just to point out that in the review after the actual measurements are given, it still says: "So in both cases slightly smaller than the page size in height."

    Many thanks for the quick response!