A favourite of all discerning stationery addicts, Baron Fig started out with a Kickstarter project for their Confidant notebook back in 2013 and it’s snowballed from there. Their products, which now include bags, pencils and accessories, share a simple design. Their beauty is in their utility. In order to create the Confidant they canvassed views from notebooks users of all stripes, and the outcome was rave reviews from artists, writers and stationery addicts everywhere. The company is constantly expanding so keep an eye out to see what’s next.
To me, bindings are integral to asserting the personality of a notebook. Traditional sewn spine bindings are the current vogue – see Rhodia’s limited edition Heritage collection for a stunning example. There are heaps of notebook making tutorials for the wannabe bookbinder. Check out my top picks over on Pinterest. And watch this space for a more detailed post coming soon.
What do John Steinbeck’s novel East of Eden and Bugs Bunny have in common? They were both created with Blackwing pencils. Since the 1930s, Blackwings have been used by creatives of all types. But despite this enviable heritage, production of the pencils was stopped in 1998 after the brand had been acquired for the second time. Of course Blackwing adherents stuck by the 602 model, which saw them commanding prices on Ebay in the region of £30. Enter Palomino. In 2008, they revived the Blackwing pencil and despite some slight changes, it’s as popular as ever. All stationery addicts should own a set of Blackwing Pencils – its all about the square eraser (the thing it sits in is called a ferrule by the way – you’re welcome!)
The blogosphere is brim full of people posting about stationery. Pick a writing implement or beloved notebook brand and you can guarantee that there’s a blog about it. There’s a whole host of lifestyle bloggers who write about their stationery hauls, too, of course but the dedicated niche sites are my favourite. Yes, I know I’m biased! I’m currently compiling a list of my favourite stationery bloggers. If you, or anyone you know should be on it, message me on Twitter or Instagram under @notebookblogger.
The planner addict’s tool of choice when it comes to jazzing up a journal page. Use brush pens to create calligraphy-style page headers and other lettering. Beautiful effects with no ink-related faffing. Tombow is my personal favourite for their spectrum of colours, but there are plenty of others available of course. Try and get a set that come with a blender to create the dreamiest effects. And Instagram is chockablock with tutorials. Just make sure you’re using quality paper to avoid too much show through.
Ryder Carrol is the brains behind Bullet Journal. Since it exploded onto the stationery scene it’s played a massive role in re-popularising planning. Don’t be put off by what you see online in terms of all the fancy layouts. Bullet Journal, affectionately known as BuJo, is actually all about simplicity. Its tagline is ‘the analogue system for the digital age’. Not sure ho well this works now they’ve got an app, but we’ll ignore that for now. My advice, begin at the beginning and build from there.
Already got a journal habit? Read my predictions on what’s next for BuJo and stay one-step ahead.
If you want to clarify your stationery obsession in percentage terms, swoon over curated handwriting samples or learn which item of stationery you are (I’m an eraser apparently) then Buzzfeed is the place for you. There are more stationery quizzes then you can shake a stick at. And tons of articles recognising milestones, products and moments that all stationery addicts have experienced. A couple of my favourites:
The hardest stationery quiz you’ll ever take – this is the one I got 93% in btw #just saying.