May 16, 2014

Filofax 'The Original' Dark Aqua Review

I haven't really seen a review for the Dark Aqua Original Filofax around, so hopefully, this will shed some light on this beautiful planner.

If someone told me a month ago that I'd be buying an Original Filofax, I probably would have laughed it off because of the ridiculous amount of pockets it had, but now that I have one, I wonder why it took me this long to buy one! Because honestly, first impression: this Filofax is beyond words (despite the lack of pockets)! I haven't felt this excited about a Filofax since I bought the Holborn! I truly love this item to bits, even more because of the colour, the weight and the size of this thing. But instead of jumping ahead with the details, I shall start from the beginning:

I received the organiser this morning and like every new Filofax that I receive in the mail, I was really excited to rip open the package to reveal the organiser within (maybe just a little bit more for this one due to its delicious Aqua colour. After all, I was lusting over it in my previous post). The moment I held it in my hands, I was so surprised at how light it felt even with the packaging still on. It wasn't as heavy as I expected it to be. It wasn't as large as well. Here is how it looks like in its packaging.

The arrival of the Original Dark Aqua

Then off comes the packaging and here it is in all its glory:

The Original Dark Aqua in its plastic cover
Visible ring studs
Oh, Genuine Leather always gets to me.
The famous 'Made in the UK' trademark for The Original range

It came in its plastic cover which acted like a book cover, but for the price of this baby, a box would have been a better protector. After all, it's meant to be 'The Original', which deserves some class doesn't it?

But moving on from the cover and onto the organiser: Look at it, I mean look how beautiful it is sitting there with its aqua colour and full leather design. It's just gorgeous. Also, I cannot emphasise how surprised I am with how flexible, soft and... thin it looks! I was expecting more of a Domino shell, but this is entirely the opposite! I don't think anyone could fathom the look and material of this Filofax until you've held it in your own hands. In this instance, the pictures do not tell a thousand words! Not to mention, it isn't even that shiny! It's more of a matte colour and its material is almost like that of my Holborn, just a little more thicker, coarser maybe, and of course, aqua!

And then there's that popper button which actually gives that little extra to the organiser to make it look complete. Here are the pictures of the popper buttons from the front and the metal found on the back cover that holds the strap in place:

Popper button

And finally, here it is without the plastic cover:

This picture is as close to the colour of the actual aqua colour, and I love it. It's a mix of blue and green, which are essentially two of my favourite colours, so really, what more could I ask for? (Maybe an A5 Patent Nude Original would be nice too, actually..)

The only small 'problem' I had with the extreme softness of the cover was the little indents that seem to show through caused by the rings:

Feint ring indentations on the front cover

Not sure if it can be seen in the picture, but they really are a minor problem which I'm already disregarding.

The first thing you'll notice when you open an Original up is the amount of flexibilty this organiser has. Actually, you wouldn't even need to open it up to know it's flexible. Look at it being balanced on my paperweight. It bends without any encouragement!:

Bending by itself!

And of course, it was a given that this Filofax will lay flat without training, but it's still amazing to see it with my own eyes:

Laying flat right from the... box plastic cover

The insides are black and quite matching with the aqua colour, I must say. The white stitching does contrast with the aqua, but it does match too and I've never been fussed by this for all my Filofaxes. There aren't that many pockets inside as many of us probably know, just the two card slots, two pen straps, a phone compartment strap and a vertical compartment on the front cover, and the jot-pad and one vertical slot at the back. There were also the embossed trademarks seen in every Filofax on the front cover of The Original:


The rings were in perfect working order too (thank God, or I'd have to send it all the way back to the UK!)

No gappy rings!

The organiser came with the same green and grey dividers that came with my cobalt Pennybridge (Spring trademark?), a clear ruler, writing pages in different colours, some grid papers and the week-on-two-pages vertical set up diary, which won't be used, however, as I'll be using all my self-made dividers and inserts.

The back of the organiser holds the jot pad which... definitely won't be used and will probably be replaced with something else. If only Filofax just sold the covers without the inserts... they'd be saving so many trees for those who didn't need them (and maybe I'd save some money too).

Jot pad
Back cover pocket

And finally, a comparison between the A5 Original and the A5 Domino:

Left: Domino; Right: Original

I was surprised to see that they were actually about the same in every way, except of course, the material and the stiffness. And maybe I'm seeing things, but could it be that the Original rings are a tad bit smaller than the Domino's? I'll have to check the specifications, but I'm not complaining right now as it has made The Original slimmer - even if by a few mm.

Overall, if my post hasn't already shown it, I have to say that I am very glad I purchased this Filofax and can't wait to put it to use. I have a feeling that I'll be leaving the plastic cover on longer than I'm supposed to though for fear of scratching it in any way. For those who haven't bought one and are thinking of buying one, I insist that you get one. You will not regret it. But make sure the colour is the one you want because that is one of the major reasons why I love this organiser so much. As for me, I'm going to run along now and set-up my new Filofax just the way I want it. Look out for the Original's full set-up post in the near future!

Edit: Just a little update on the size of the rings - the A5 Domino rings are quintessentially bigger with 30mm compared to just 25mm for The Original.


  1. Many thanks for this review....I was looking for one on the original in Dark Aqua...can you share/compare this Aqua with the Aqua Malden coloring ? Also did you notice if the ring size on the original is smaller in size than the Domino rings ? Thanks much, loved the pics and review !

    1. Hi Pat! Thanks for the comment and your kind words (:

      I did manage to find out about the ring sizes, and in turns out, the Domino actually does have bigger rings. The Domino has 30mm whereas The Original has only 25mm.

      And as for your question regarding the Malden, I haven't been fortunate enough to find a Malden in Aqua (although it looks like a really lovely colour), but I have found pictures comparing it with The Original's aqua. The link is:

      Hope it helps!

    2. You are Awesome! Thanks so much for the ring info and that great link on the color of the Dark Aqua Original! It helped so much. I'm still gnawing on my nails over the color...decisions, decisions! LOL!
      Happy Filofaxing!
      Hugs and Thanks too!

    3. No worries! I'm glad I could help. Good luck with your decision! (:

  2. AnonymousMay 24, 2014

    Hi There - lovely colour organiser! To answer your question, Filofax does sell the covers without the inserts. You can ring one of the london stores and pay over the phone and they will post out. HTH

    1. Really? But hmm, being all the way in Australia, surely it wouldn't be much cheaper than what I could shop around for locally / on eBay with the inserts? Thanks for the info though! (: