Sometimes I buy things that I know I shouldn’t. Lucky for me this was only $2.59 (via Amazon) so it wasn’t a huge loss by any means. As you can tell from looking at it, its sort of like a wallet for 3″ x 5″ index cards. What you cant tell is that this note card case is made of a rubber or silicone type material, and is also available in blue, light blue, green or black. Its one of those annoying “color may vary” items if you have seen that before, so unless you want black, its a roll of the dice to try and get one of the other colors. To specify black will set you back $5 though.
The Oxford At Hand Note Card Case is designed (poorly) to present one 3″ x 5″ note card to jot notes down on. The case itself measures about 3.75″ x 5.5″ and has two mini pockets on the top and bottom where you tuck the ends of the note card in to hold it in place. The problem with these mini pockets that hold the index card in place is that they arent that mini. Each one covers up 3/4″ of the index card, or 1.5″ in total. Since the index card is only 5 inches in total, its frustrating to have almost 1/3 of the card rendered useless for writing on because its covered up. Ignoring the fact that so much of the card gets covered up, its also not easy to get the card in there to lay flat. There is a considerable amount of friction that makes it hard to perfectly position the card or to get it in far enough to lay it totally flat. Don’t get me wrong, it CAN get done, but its not the quickest or easiest thing to do. There is also a pen loop which is surprisingly pretty strong.
In the center of the Oxford at Hand Note Card case, there is an inner pocket that holds 25+ index cards depending on their thickness. The cards that come with the case are fairly flimsy and thin though, so for cards of a substantial weight it will be a bit tighter.
Two things about this closer up picture of the case. First of all, the thumb notch in the middle here is one of the few overall positives. It definitely makes it easier to nudge the cards out of the center pocket for easy access. The second thing though is a negative, for two reasons. On the right corner you can see some brown filth there, thats how it came to me. This ins’t Oxford’s fault and if it was a more costly product I’d have complained to Amazon and asked for a refund or replacement. But the bigger issue here is how easy it gets dirty. The filth did wash off with some soap and water, but the water gets into all of the pockets and flaps so its a bit difficult to get it dried out so that you can put your index cards back in without them getting water damage. Wiping it with a wet cloth would be better, but again for a $3 product this is too much thought and effort.
This is the back side of the Oxford At Hand Note Card Case, again, not super functional because so much of the case covers the writing surface of the index card. Overall I these are functional and serve a purpose, however they just don’t look that great (plus they get dirty easily) and the design is really not that well thought out. There are lots of other options out there, but if you must, you can play color roulette for $2.59 and take your chances, or you can pay almost twice the price and guarantee yourself to get the black one over on Amazon.
©2016, Brian Greene. All rights reserved.