How ana tomy is building the next-gen stationery brand

When we first started the project, it was a humbling process of maintaining a low-key idea that was not too wild, overly innovative or would insinuate to outshine other notebooks in the market. The basic method is to rid market concerns and make something that we would be proud of using daily. The current notebook formats and layouts are already adaptable for everyone, and there is no reason to reinvent the wheel. Therefore, in our approach, we decided on a relatively exciting way to create the perfect notebook.

"We believe mass customisation is the future of manufacturing and retailing."

What is mass customisation?
Mass customisation is the new frontier in business for both manufacturing and service industries. At its core is a tremendous increase in variety and customisation without a corresponding increase in costs. At its limit, it is the mass production of individually customised goods and services. At its best, it provides strategic advantage and economic value. – Wikipedia

In a conventional mode of manufacturing, most products are designed with specific requirements without the freedom for alteration — this common dilemma potentially narrows customers’ demands, and they are forced to settle for less. There is still a wide gap for companies to reach the height of satisfaction in fulfilling customers’ needs; mainly due to cost and inventory issues being the stumbling blocks.

Instead of the one-size-fits-all approach, we have altogether designed an inventive space, which allows you to be part of the product design process right from the get-go.

With this mass customisation experience, everyone can design their own notebook. Pick from a selection of notebook inserts that fit your needs, notebook covers that carry your personality and combine a personalised name in making your preferred notebook design. It can make up to many thousands of design combinations. Our artisans are able to assemble the notebook on the spot, entirely manufactured on demand.

We designed and built the online customisation tool, which allows you to create your own combinations by mixing and matching covers, inserts, wire, and bands.
Our artisans assemble your notebook on the spot.
You can explore and select from a complete range of covers, inserts, wires and elastic bands, mix and match to find your perfect combination all in one space.

Despite that, we also hope to make personalisation more accessible to the masses. Personalisation services are usually an exclusive offering at the flagship store of a luxury brand, but we can now do it on the spot and finish it within minutes. This makes your notebook truly personalised on top of our highly customisable notebook. It is one-of-a-kind, striking and impactful — perfect for gift giving.

Through this model we can move towards a zero inventory as it is a completely on-demand method of production and distribution. By changing the lead times from weeks to minutes, we are changing the speed at which a product can go-to-market.

How we believe notebooks are as relevant as ever in the digital age?

We want you to enjoy the comfort of writing by the appeal of the material itself.

We live in a world full of distraction. And to accomplish our goals, it requires focus. The ability to focus on performing a task or agenda requires a lot of concentration. The constant need to purge our thoughts demands an output in written form. A physical notebook that enables us to write, sketch, and scribble remain unchanged for centuries. It does one simple task of jotting down your ideas, and it is compact enough for you to bring anywhere that suits your comfort zone. It has a sentimental value that digital electronic devices are not able to provide.

A notebook also acts as a reflection of the soul. It is a powerful tool that is armed with personal thoughts, daily agendas or even business endeavour proposals. Rather than only having a pleasing aesthetic feature, ana tomy notebooks are designed to be usable and functional in every aspect. We invested over a year to carefully select the best possible materials. These include — the cover, the endpaper, the insert papers and even the chipboard that will eventually be hidden after being wrapped by the cover paper. Though it is not commonly practised in many industries, we choose to showcase all our materials to demonstrate transparency and pledge commitment to all our customers before assembling their very own personalised notebook.

If you have a vision, a possible way to add value to people's life, don't let anything stand in your way.

Aligned with our philosophy, “Simplicity is the utmost sophistication,” the ana tomy notebook doesn’t seek for attention as it benefits from its effortless charm of minimalism rather than a complicated one.

We are obsessed with every detail of every single product — each rivet, band, material and paper has been sourced, selected, and chosen by us. We source materials from the most reputable suppliers across the globe, then marry contemporary technology with long-established practices. Through this, we hope to achieve a notebook that is timeless and able to withstand the test of time.

Despite the fact that our covers have undergone fingermark resistant treatment and are tear resistant, signs of usage like accidental scratches, coffee stains, and watermarks are inevitable. You should not be alarmed when this happens to your notebook as each mark carries a story of its own and uniquely develops a look that represents you. The cloth-like paper used to cover the notebook gives the right amount of thickness to the chipboard in creating a sturdy cover without looking too bulky. The complex nature of choosing the perfect chipboard can affect the appearance of a cover, as it will easily curl if the right amount of attention is not given to its thickness. In solving this, we selected the Eska board — a three-layer laminated solid board from the Netherlands, made of 100% recycled paper — that can reduce the curls even after the glue is applied on our cover paper.

Every material that we chose has been given thorough consideration and detailing in making sure our products are up to par. The papers are FSC-certified or recyclable, and we work hard to minimise our impact by using it as efficiently as possible. It speaks for itself intuitively once your hand meets the notebook.

List of papers we used

Cover paper

125gsm Fedrigoni Imitlin (Italy)
770gsm Eska Board (Netherlands)

Insert paper

85gsm Fabriano Bio Prima B1 (Italy)

End paper

95gsm Fedrigoni Tintoretto Ceylon (Italy)

Paper pocket

180gsm Materica Clay (Italy)

The real reason we gift!

ana tomy notebooks come with a minimal yet thoughtfully designed packaging to securely house your personalised notebook and accessories. We hope to extend the experience to the moment of you or your recipients unboxing the notebook. By keeping it minimal and discreet, we hope the recipients will have an element of surprise without the need for an additional wrapping paper; saving the cost of your purchase and avoiding excessive packaging. Gift giving, after all, is a physical symbol of a personal relationship and an expression of social ties that bring individuals together, regardless of the price.

We wrap each cover by hand very carefully and keep variances as minimal as possible.
All our notebooks are made to order.
Make it personal with our name inscription service.
Personalisation service that is usually an exclusive offering at the flagship store of a luxury brand, we make it accessible to the masses.

At last, here we are.

There are multitudes of complications in creating something minimal while embracing simplicity in our design approach. But without the process, our product would not be how we envisioned it to be today.

We believe — a notebook can just be any notebook, but what distinguishes it from the rest is the idea behind it, and we look forward to building that platform together with you. Above all, the single most important thing is to keep writing and be continuously inspired by documenting everything in your notebook for your safe keeping.

Who's behind the ana tomy?

From left: Cliff, Zeejay & Fidella.

We are Cliff, Zeejay, and Fidella. Hands down, we love creating. In 2016, we founded ana tomy — a space where bespoke and off-the-shelf products are merged to create a customisation experience of a bespoke product while maintaining the simplicity of a ready-made product all in one space.

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