19 November 2020

Guest Post - Prototype Malden - Sally

Thank you to Sally for submitting this post. We know prototypes or pre-production samples do find their way out in to the wilds. I have reviewed a Holborn that turned out to be a pre-production sample and I own a prototype/evaluation sample of an Eton Compact that never made it in to full production

I acquired this organiser a couple of years ago. There are a few differences between it and the pocket Malden that went into production, as illustrated in these photos.

The popper is flat.

The inside embossing only has the Filofax name, not the model name or the description ‘antiqued leather’. 

The pocket configuration of this organiser is identical to the regular pocket Malden except the prototype lacks a full height pocket on the inside back cover.

The last photo shows the comparison between the smooth, vibrant red leather of the prototype and the much darker, textured leather of the crimson Malden.

It’s an interesting addition to my Malden collection.

Thank you Sally for sharing this with us all. 


  1. The leather on this prototype looks a lot like filofax fakes on aliexpress.

    1. That’s interesting. I was, of course, well aware of the risk involved in buying an item like this and that it might not be genuine. However, I did contact the seller for more information. I also have never seen a fake fitted with Filofax embossed rings. Can never be 100% sure though I suppose. Caveat emptor.

    2. The 'Malden Style' organisers that appeared on Ebay and Amazon UK a few years ago under the 'Sherwood' brand had inferior looking rings compared to this one.

      They also had the details of the leather embossed in the front cover, but no mention of Filofax inside and no 'f' on the spine.

      They were being sold by a couple in Scotland and I did a post (now removed) that I called them out for using certain key words in their advertising to boost their sales. They disappeared as quickly as they appeared.

      There were also some on AliExpress, but they where PU leather not real leather at all. Difficult to tell the difference from the photos alone. But their smell would have given them away.

      I've said this in the past that Filofax were sometimes a little slow to protect their trademark. I eventually got them to take some action about ETSY sellers using Filofax in their adverts. In one case it was 'Filofax planner charms' these items had no product testing as required in the EU. Had a child swallowed one of them I'm sure Filofax would have come under some 'heat' over product liability. ETSY were eventually told to suspend any adverts for 'Filofax' items that were not made by Filofax. I've not checked recently to see if they are still upholding that restriction or not... there are only so many hours in a day!

      In a previous life I did a lot of type testing to meet EU standards before items could be placed 'on the market' so I know a bit about this sort of thing! Happy days!

    3. Thanks for this explanation Steve.