But this morning as I was loading it up I discovered, much to my astonishment, not only does it not lie flat but it doesn't even stay open by itself! Here it is in the process of closing on its own:
The only other issue I noticed was when I first put my pen into the leather non-elasticated pen loop, a piece of the leather from inside the loop came out the bottom of the pen loop. I pushed my pen back up from the other direction in the pen loop to stuff that scrap of leather back in, then once the loop was opened up it was fine and I can get my pen in and out of there without the scrap sticking out anymore. The leather loop holds a relatively thin pen. (I told my husband the moment a Filofax has a pen in its loop is like the moment it actually comes to life. It's ready to write in and use!)
I'm using it as a wallet with my payment cards in the front card slots and all my loyalty cards, library card etc. in business card holders at the back. I love that my phone fits into the back pocket:
I have month on two pages calendars and a 4-year pull-out planner, financial stuff with the calculator on the rings,
Today's the first day I'm using it as a combined wallet + info book, and so far so good. I keep my coins and bills in a separate coin purse so the Malden has only cards in it.
It feels good to have a Filofax as an information-on-the-go book again! And I do love the leather of the ochre Malden. It already had a couple of scratches on the cover around the spine when I got it, so I don't have to worry about messing up a perfect cover. Plus the ochre leather has an antiqued look that I love, and any scratches or anything really would just add to the character of the book, making it look used and well-loved.
Does anyone else have a Malden with the stiffness issues of this one? If so, were you able to get it to lie flat eventually?
**Update June 2013: Eventually I realized there wasn't anything sandwiched between the leather after all. The hardness was the actual leather on the inside of the spine next to the rings. That leather was so hard it cracked and crunched when I bent it to try to get the binder to lay flat. When I held the binder in my hands I could feel the hardness around the spine and the distinct line of it through the cover. I did the Nivea treatment on it and although it made the leather look better (not so dry), it didn't penetrate to soften that piece of leather.
I continued to be so disappointed that this binder wasn't soft and buttery like I had expected a Malden to be. I never got over it and just never bonded with this Malden . So, I sold it to someone who I hope will love it like it deserves to be!