15 Feb 2018

eighteen months with a moleskine planner: 2016 - 17 briefly reviewed

This is possibly the first time I've managed to stick with one planner until the end. This Le Petit Prince Moleskine is an 18-month planner, beginning July 2016 and I managed to see it until the very last day - 31st of December 2017. It has been well used as you can see from the ink stain on the fabric cover.

The double page spread for each week worked well for me. The note page allowed me to plan outfits and meals, as well as there being ample space for a to-do list that would last for the full seven days.

Surprisingly, the paper took most inks pretty well. My pen of choice for most of the time was a Pilot Kakuno in fine, inked with Diamine Blue-Black (I'm a little obsessed with this ink for some reason) and the paper actually didn't kick up too much of a fuss! The barest amount of show through and very little (if any) bleeding the majority of the time.

The note pages though are another story. There were only seven sides in total and these sides were quickly filled up. I had to resort to post-it notes in the end which wasn't ideal!

Overall, I enjoyed my eighteen months in this planner. The paper performed better than expected, the design and layout were adequate for my needs but the amount of note paper left a lot to be desired. Seven sides for eighteen months is extremely stingy considering how many pages are wasted on measurement conversions and things like that. For that reason, my Leuchtturm 1917 planner for this year should serve me well.

13 Feb 2018

new pen: TWSBI Eco Turquoise Limited Edition in an extra fine nib

This feels like a bit of a fitting post for Valentine's Day - this pen was pretty much love at first sight and write when it came in the post. Let me explain why.

The turquoise colour with the red contrast of the TWSBI logo is cheerful and the demonstrator design is an added incentive to fill it with a bright and vibrant ink. The turquoise colour is right up my street and I can find very little wrong with this pen. 

Also in possession of a TWSBI Diamond 580AL in purple (a re-visit is long over due - coming soon!), I must say that this Eco is my preferred TWSBI of the two. It is lighter, doesn't feel unbalanced with the cap posted and the nib is perfection. My preference is to have the cap posted because of my fear of losing the cap, so any pen where I can do this with ease is an automatic winner.

The nib is an extra fine and it writes a thin enough line to satisfy my nib-sizeist ways. It is way finer than the fine nib in my 580AL and writes smoothly with no feedback. To the point where I even questioned, 'can a nib be as perfect as this?!'

This pen is honestly one that can do no wrong in my eyes. The price is excellent for a piston filler, the nib is incredible, the ink capacity is ridiculous (ridiculously huge) and the build quality appears to be super high. I was on the fence for about six months before biting the bullet on Fountain Pen Day back in November and absolutely no regrets! My only issue now is the 2018 limited edition colour - is it going to be one that will tempt me to splash out?!

7 Feb 2018

fleur de lys extra large recycled leather wrap journal from central crafts

Journaling is something I do most nights (around 5 out of 7 nights a week) and it has been the one thing which helps me unload things that would usually keep me up at night. I'm someone who dives into things head and heart first - partly why I've always wanted to be a doctor - but it also means my mental health needs a bit more looking after.

Every night, I sit in bed with a journal and fountain pen and unload everything from the day that is still on my mind. I then reflect on how these things make me feel and what I can learn from them in the future.

You may have read recently in the news that a junior doctor was removed from the GMC register for reflecting about an adverse event on her online portfolio. Reflection is a big part of this job and I am now apprehensive at sharing my reflections online. Yet another reason for writing things down and storing these filled journals somewhere safe.

Anyway! I've digressed a bit. Today, I want to introduce Central Crafts to you all. They are a family run business with an ethos of sourcing high quality and ethically produced items. As an avid recycler, this is something I really respect. Too often, the throwaway culture currently present means that very little thought is put into how much waste we create.

Today, I have here the Fleur de Lys Recycled Leather Wrap Journal in extra large. A more thorough and handwritten review of the journal is in one of the photos below. Enjoy!

31 Jan 2018

my fountain pen wishlist for 2018

Though I'm trying really hard to be good this year and not add too many new pens to my collection, there are a few pens which have caught my eye. Here are five pens which have made their way onto my wishlist.

Parker 51 Vacumatic

This vintage fountain pen has been on my list for a while now. It's tempting to buy one off eBay but this is a pen I'd quite like to inspect quite thoroughly before handing over some hard-earned cash for. Trawling local charity shops and vintage shops has not yielded anything yet and my aim is to attend a fountain pen show this year to track one of these babies down. The holy grail would be one in a true fine nib.

Pilot Elite 95S Burgundy

A pen that isn't readily available here in the UK unfortunately! My only concern with it is that the pen might be a bit short. My hands are a little on the larger side for a female so small pens can be uncomfortable for me. My aim would be to go to the Far East at some point, try the pen out in person and then make up my mind.

Noodler's Ahab

Flex nibs are something that have always scared me but this offering looks like a gentle ease into this new fascination of mine. Whether or not I take the plunge and order one is another question. I'm not quite sure I can justify another new pen at the moment!

Possibly the 2018 Limited Edition TWSBI Eco 

I acquired a turquoise Eco in 2017 and I really love how smooth the extra fine nib is. It really is a pleasure to use and it's tempted me into collecting all of the colour variations, as and when they pop up on the market...

Possibly the 2018 Limited Edition Lamy Safari (colour dependent!)

Every year, I'm pretty sure I say this to myself - that my purchase of the limited edition Lamy Safari depends on the colour of it. Having bought last year's petrol green, I do have a little tinge of regret as the colour isn't one I am particularly fond of. Only time will tell if I make the same mistake again...

- - -

This is my wishlist at the moment. I try and keep a maximum of five or six pens on it. I'm trying to weigh up purging my collection to purchase some of these beauties or just keep them on the wishlist for now. Or until a major life event occurs where I can justify an addition to mark the occasion...

Let's wait and see...