29 Apr 2012

my filofax week #2

So, this is my week beginning the 23rd of April. It looks quite packed but mainly because I wrote my packing list in it (bad move) and my shopping list had to go on a separate piece of notepaper (and because of that, I had to take two pictures)!

What's changed?

{a lot messier than the previous week }
{a lot more 'to do's - which is a given as I moved back to London for my final term on the Friday }

So, another week down. Again, as said last week, if you'd like to be featured, feel free to email me a photo of your week to fadingskylines[@]gmail.com :) You can also add some text too if you want. I would, and I'm sure other readers would too, love to see the inside of other Filofaxes too!

27 Apr 2012

organisation: using oxford project books

So, I came home with one of these today. An A4 Oxford project book. It comes with six dividers (not removable as far as I can see?), A4 paper that is perforated and can be removed easily and also a pouch at the back for loose papers or pens and stuff.

Anyway, that isn't the interesting part... 

Opening it up, one can see this to begin with:

It says at the bottom, 'For more information, please visit www.mindtools.com/oxford'. And I did - it is full of tips which expands on the ones in the project book itself. I'd urge you to take a look as there are so many useful tips on there - some of which I hope to incorporate in my own life's projects! Moreover, not only are there tips for organisation, there are tips for learning things, tips for communication and tips for goal setting - all very useful as far as I can see as I have bookmarked the site and copied down relevant stuff that I particularly value as advice!

26 Apr 2012

my 101 things in 1001 days challenge

I started one of these challenges when I first started this blog but on examination of it recently, I realised that it had many goals on it which were old and not relevant to the person I am now. As a result of this, I wrote a new list.

Do any of you guys have a list similar to this? If so, what sort of goals are on it? The deadline for my achieving of all these things is the 29th of December 2014 so provided the world doesn't end sometime this year, this'll give me about two years and six months to achieve them all.

21 Apr 2012

new feature: my filofax this week {16/04/12}

Time for a new feature! This time, this is a weekly thing. Basically, it's my Filofax week, every week on a Saturday or Sunday. I will pixelate out the more personal things, but the idea is to keep a weekly 'journal' if you like of what my week looks like, each week, but also how things change in how I use my Filofax to organise and plan.

Without further ado, I reveal to all you lovely readers... my week beginning 16th of April 2012!

So, the highlights of this week were:

{ Using a mini notebook page to organise what I would pack to bring home from London }
{ A post offer open day at King's - with a train ticket stuck down to show me what happened on the Tuesday, if I were to flick through 2012 again in the future }
{ A reminder to watch Have I Got More News For You on BBC iPlayer }
{ The use of a sticker with a crown on to jazz up the week - the crown I thought was fitting as it was the King's College open day }

Another Filofax week, next week! (I can see that the word 'week' might become really repetitive with these posts!) Hope you enjoyed this peek into my Affair :)

20 Apr 2012

things to do in London...as a student

As a student, an important aspect of it is having fun but saving as much money as possible! Here are some things which are fun to do as a student but not costly either!

Be in the audience of a television programme.

Image Credit: The Telegraph

A good site for this is Lost In TV. From this site, I've been in the audience for The Apprentice: You're Fired three times so far and am planning to go again later this summer. Tickets are free and the experience is interesting and not to mention the fact that you get to see that week's episode of The Apprentice before the wider television audience!

Try Gourmet burgers.

Two better establishments for this is Gourmet Burger Kitchen and Byron burgers. I used to be a frequent customer at these two chains until my gluten intolerance came into the picture. They are a bit more expensive than a meal at McDonald's but the takeaway option makes them affordable as an occassional treat.

Ride on a Boris Bike!

Image Credit: New Biscuit

The more fun and cheap option to travel around London; or even to just ride around Hyde Park in! And with more docking sites added in recent months, this is definitely something that is convenient too.

Walk Along the River Thames

Credit: Rivers of the World

Always something to see and there are so many bridges you could cross to flit back and forth between north and south of 'the river'.

These are my top recommendations for things to do but with a city so big, there are so many more things that can be done for free or for a very small fee :)

18 Apr 2012

artbox notebooks


Following on from my post about alternative notebooks to the Filofax Flex ones, I ordered a few (well, understatement of the year there) from Artbox. Here are some pictures:

The arrival and unboxing...

 And beneath the bubble wrap were a pile of notebooks of various sizes up to A5...

And a closer look at them all - they're all really cute so I couldn't possibly leave one out!

1. A simple plain notebook which kind of reminds me of the Muji ones but at a fraction of the price and also size!

2. A cute notebook in the colours of neapolitan ice cream (sort of) and a cute illustration on each page...

3. The front on the left and the back on the right! So cute, right?

4. A close up of the texture of the cover on the right...

5. The top picture is of the cover and the bottom picture is of the inside cover. I love the contrasting pastel colours!

6. A blue notebook with a cute bear shadow on the front...

7. A notebook with cute animal illustrations on the front...

8. A cute notebook with a bunny on the front.

9. A variation of the previous notebook but in yellow and another character on the front.

10. A striped notebook...

11. And a variation of the one before but this time with blue stripes and a cute face on the front!

12. And finally, a polka dot notebook!

All in all, I can't help but be excited to use all of these. They're far cheaper than the Filofax Flex notebook version and fit well into the slot and moreover, they will brighten up my Filofax far better than the grey Flex ones will! Although the paper quality is slightly lower than the Flex notebooks, it doesn't matter due to the price and I usually only use the notebooks for rough notes anyway and not for anything special.

And to cap it off, I'm now even more in love with my Affair than ever :D

15 Apr 2012

an alternative to the flex notebooks?

As most of you Filofax fans should know by now, The Affair by Temperley for Filofax is a mix between a Flex set up and a compact sized Filofax. But, to keep buying the Flex notebooks can be costly, especially if you go through them quite quickly (something that I'm not worried about...yet!) so my question is, what alternatives are there out there?

So far, I've only found one notebook which fits:

This notebook is from Artbox. It's far cheaper than the A5 Flex notebook (which is said to have 80 pages but only has 74...! I didn't count them - I had to number my pages of my dissertation notebook before you judge me!) at £1.80 and it has 64 pages in it. It also fits well in the Flex slot and it doesn't look too shabby either (especially after I added a sticker to it's front!):

The next notebook I want to hunt down to try is the Muji A5 one which may or may not fit. I'm not back in London til late April so I'll head to my local Muji then; but for now, I've found at least one alternative and am on the lookout for other cheaper options too!

One thing I've not yet tested is the paper quality though on first thoughts, the Flex notebook does appear to be of a higher quality - but surely not so much that it should cost more than 3 times of the one I bought from Artbox?! The quality of the Artbox notebook isn't too bad either - no show through when I used a Muji gel pen but I haven't used it properly yet so only time will tell, I guess.

Have you found other alternatives? I'm looking more specifically at the A5 size :-)

14 Apr 2012

touristy things to do in London

I received a request from a lovely reader asking for my recommendations for things tourists should do in London. In the coming weeks, I will also be doing posts on what current Londoners should also do and what students should do too. So, to kick things off; here are my five things tourists should be in London! My focus on these posts will be West London as that is the area I know the best.

Knightsbridge, South Kensington, White City and Notting Hill should be the main focus areas. My university is based in South Kensington so I know these areas quite well. Here are the highlights of West London:

Royal Albert Hall.

Even if you don't go inside; to admire the exterior architecture is free and not to mention awe-striking. In my first year, my halls were across Hyde Park but each day, I had to walk past the Royal Albert Hall to get to lectures and each time I did, I always noticed something new and different about it.

Westfield White City

A shopper's paradise with a good mix of high end, high street and cheaper retailers; as well as plenty of restaurants to choose from when your stomach starts to grumble. Not only this, there are random stalls throughout the shopping centre but it's so big, it may be worth leaving aside a whole day for it. Stores range from the normal Topshop, to higher end high street in NW3, Whistles, Reiss and also to technology shops, such as an Apple store and other department stores too such as House of Fraser and Debenhams.
If you're in the mood for sitting in the dark for a few hours, there's also a cinema and with the good transport links going into and out of it (in the form of two nearby tube stations - Wood Lane and White City - as well as numerous bus routes), there is no reason to not give this glasshouse a visit.

Notting Hill
Plenty of boutiques for window shopping and also many streets of pretty terraced town houses to stare at if you get bored of looking at things you can't afford or don't wish to part with cash for!

Harrods and Harvey Nichols
Knightsbridge gets to boast two department stores within walking distance of each other (literally about 100m apart!) in Harrods and Harvey Nicks. Harrods is definitely worth a look in as it really is shopaholic's paradise. Not only this, their food court is one to be rivalled - there is a champagne bar where you can guzzle oysters and sip bubbly on bar stools and feeling like a million dollars.

South Kensington boasts several museums within walking distance from its tube station. Most are free entry but you may have to pay for exhibitions that they have going on at the time. Museums include the Victoria and Albert museum, Natural History and the Science Museum.

The famous nightclub where Prince Harry has been spotted stumbling out of is actually in South Kensington! However, entry can be hard to come by with queues spotted on a regular basis, particularly on weekend nights.

Hyde Park

No entrance fee is required for this park and in the winter, it is home to Winter Wonderland - something that must be visited at night for a cup of mulled wine and a evening of fun at the German themed 'fair'.

A visit to the business area!

Canary Wharf is full of buildings that house businessmen and women on a daily basis. It's worth having a look at the architecture as although they seem to be glass buildings, it actually is a sight to behold!

Kensington Palace

Situated within Hyde Park, this is another place that can be seen during a day of lounging in the park or a day of casually strolling through it.

To the side of this park is a road, commonly referred to as London's 'Billionaires' Row'. I've walked through it at night and even then, there are policemen down that road! The road name is Kensington Palace Gardens for those interested and the houses along that road are very, very big and grand; plus the architecture is just stunning. I can only dream of living in a house like that and I can only imagine how amazing the high ceilings and period features would be in houses like those.

* * *

So, these are my recommendations for places to go to in West London. I'm afraid I'm not very informed about the other (massive) parts of London, apart from the shopping hubs but West London does make for a very safe and great day out!

Any other questions, please do ask in the form of a comment or email :)

12 Apr 2012

adorable sticky notes

Organising is more fun when there is a reason to enjoy it - and what better way to increase this enjoyment than through the use of cute sticky notes! I got these two sticky note sets from Artbox (don't worry, I don't work for them, I just love their stuff!) and they are just so adorable that sometimes, I find it really difficult to actually use them! Dilemma.

To add to the cuteness, I also have the two following sticky note sets too. They are designed to be like books so that they fold over (you can just see the faint outline of where you are meant to fold).

I'm a sucker for cute stationery and these sticky notes actually make me want to organise stuff and actually be busy!

6 Apr 2012

march review!

Here are the things I couldn't have lived without in March 2012:

1. Of course, what else would be number 1?? My Temperley for Filofax; The Affair! I'm simply in love with this Filofax and I still am after a month and a bit - and this has never happened before with a Filofax. With my Vintage Rose Finchley, I fell in and out of love with it but with The Affair, I just can't help but stare at it sometimes.

2. The colour pink! From coral to baby pink to blush tones, I just can't get enough of it. 

I bought the top on the left recently 

3. My Taste Card

I ate out once a week this month and the discount that comes with this card was so worth it. Because my last exam for this degree (ever! Well, that's if I passed...!) was on the 28th of February, I caught up with friends in March and to do this, we went out to eat.

4. A Simple LBD

For those who don't know, LBD = little black dress. Over the course of March, I had a few formal events and whenever I found myself having to get ready in a rush or in a panic over what to wear, I always went back to this dress from Zara. Add a flashy necklace and a jazzy cocktail ring and I'm set for the evening!

What were the things you couldn't live without in March?

5 Apr 2012


My Flex by Filofax notebook (the thinner version) is currently in use as my 'dissertation' notebook.
To brighten up a tedious project, I've used coloured Muji 0.5mm gel pens!
To brighten up organisation in my Filofax... I have done the following...

This is my 'To Visit' restaurant list. I've brightened it up by
writing in a way that is different in each row so that it looks more
interesting to the eye.

The use of post-it notes cut up into smaller sizes can increase the
room for writing things in my Filofax. It also increases the aesthetic
appeal when I open it up on the 'Today' tab.
Writing scary things in a scary way makes my Filofax more interesting;
well, it does to me anyway! 

As said before in a previous post, the use of stickers can also make my Filofax more 'personal' too.

Colouring in the foods that are in season in each month makes
a two-tone page come to life.

And finally, something else personal too! My sister is really, really good at art (though she's doing a Chemistry degree at Imperial College too at the moment; so artistic and brainy - not fair!) and she drew this for me to put in my Filofax. My hole punch came in very handy here and the picture is of a teddy I've had for years and so has sentimental value to me. 

What do you do to brighten up and personalise your Filofax? I'm always on the lookout for ways to improve the personal quality of my Filofax :-)

2 Apr 2012

one month check in with The Affair

Due to the high (and some may say extortionate) price point of The Affair, I have decided to do a post where I 'check in' on it after a month of solid use.

Before I do so, let me give you an idea of how I have always treated my Filofaxes!

I mindlessly throw it into my handbag before I head into university every day because I'm always in a rush when it comes to leaving - just to ensure I arrive to lectures/tutorials/labs on time. I also put it in with a bottle of water, food, pens, etc. I do surface clean it from time to time but it's not uncommon for me to see a pen mark or something on a Filofax within a few months of use.

Anyway, here is the update.

The lace has held up well (apologies for the colouring, my phone camera is a bit rubbish):

None of the lace has come off and it is all still stuck on the leather underneath it. The patent piping has also held up well and none of the stitching has come off!

This is how thick my Affair looks like - I put in a smaller Flex notebook as at the moment, I don't have a requirement for the big one. It makes the weight more manageable and also works better for me too. As you can see from the rings, I have literally packed the Filofax with inserts. I will be putting it on a diet soon though as I don't really use all the notepaper due to the Flex notebook.

The clasp still looks and feels as good as new. 

The inside still looks as good as new too! And here is a closer look at the pink satin...

What I love about it is that although the pink satin may not seem as attractive to some people, I like it as a good surface clean with warm water is enough to rid it of stains and just to clean it.

Moreover, the lace has surprised me with how well it is glued on and overall, I am more in love with The Affair than ever! Although it was a high price to pay for a Filofax, I can actually see myself using this for years and years to come and I have had so many compliments about it too!

As a result, look out for sales of my other Filofaxes as I need to raise some money for next year; as hopefully, I will be embarking on a medicine degree at King's College London. I need to pay for the tuition and living expenses myself though as I don't get a student loan for it. My offer is on the condition that I graduate with a 2.1 this summer - which I am on course to do - so fingers crossed!