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December 29, 2009

Write…the preparation phase part two…

Filed under: Inspiration, Morning Musings, stationary — jackie @ 12:09 pm

Good morning readers…

So…I’ve picked my pens, still need to decide on my basic ink color (possibly dark blue) now it’s time to decide on the type of paper I want to use. Paper can be as simple as a lined pad from the stationery section of the grocery store or as fancy as specially monogramed paper from a fine stationery store.

Paper is definately a personal choice. Me? For general correspondence I love Crane’s paper. I’ve been using it for many years. It’s 100% cotton, has a nice smooth finish, comes in many colors and styles and fountain pens write like a dream on it. It’s not too horribly expensive. I think I’ve paid between about $8.00 for a set of 25 plain notecards and I think a box of paper without envelopes is between $12 and $18.

For a more cost effective stationery, I like to buy various 8.5″x11″ papers from our local business paper supplier. They have a lovely paper called Via natural that has a nice smooth writing surface. It’s fun to setup and print my own letterhead on them using the Inkjet printer. I also make my own cards out of art papers or card stock sheets cut in half and folded.  I glue pretty photos to the front or sometimes draw, paint or collage on then.

For friends or family, and even strangers, it’s sometimes fun to send decorated mail. I recently purchased a book called Good Mail Day: A Primer for Making Eye-Popping Postal Art. It’s definately a fun book to look at and a good source of ideas for your own decorated letters and envelopes.

For those of you that write letters. What type of papers do you like to use?

I’m thinking about having a little New Years’ giveaway here on the blog. It will be writing related. Please check back during the week for more details.

I hope everyone has a great day.

• • •

December 28, 2009

Write…the preparation phase…

Filed under: Morning Musings, stationary, stuff to buy — jackie @ 9:32 am

Good morning readers.

I spent a little time yesterday reading about writing and writers. Afterward I dug around in my stationery box looking to see what I had left in there and concluded that a trip to the stationary store and the post office for stamps was in order. I also pulled out the pen box and dusted off an old favorite fountain pen, checked my ink supply and also decided that I needed some new colors of ink so I put ink on my stationary store list too.

My list so far…stamps…check…paper…check…ink….check…new fountain pen…double check! My best friend Holly is purchasing me a new pen for a combo graduation/Christmas present and I am really stoked about it. I’ve had my eye on a Namiki Falcon for some time now but could never justify getting another pen. Let’s just say that I have “several” in my clollection.

If you’re interested in getting a fine writing instrument then there is no better choice than a good fountain pen. Here’s some good information about care and selection of fountain pens from the DIY Planner site.

Once I get my supplies I’ll need something to put them in for easy access and storage. Alexandra Stoddard writes in her book Gift of A Letter that you should always carry a pen, a few note cards, envelopes and stamps with you so that you can write while you are waiting in the Dr’s office, on the bus, in a cab or anywhere else that you may be waiting or have a little down time. 

I’m thinking about making a leather wallet to hold my supplies in. There are some interesting examples of leather stationery wallets online.  Most of them are zippered folios. I’m thinking more along the lines of something folded. Perhaps based off of my Chameleons. Once I figure out the design I’ll share it with you in case anyone would like to make one of their own.

I hope everyone has a wonderful day.

• • •

March 10, 2008

Monday morning musings…

Filed under: Morning Musings, stationary — jackie @ 9:03 am

Good morning readers.

One of the special projects that I am working on is a refillable sketch/note/date book. This one has a leather cover and inserts that you can switch out or replace when filled.

I recently became enamored with the Midori Traveler’s Notebook. These books are made in Japan and quite popular there. Like the Moleskine, they are gathering a bit of a cult following. I discovered them on Patrick Ng’s blog Scription, which is all about stationary and cool notebooks and is a visual treat. There is also a Flickr group for owners of the books.

Since they are so hard to get here in the states, I decided to make my own version of it.  The size is a little different. It’s slightly taller and wider. (The Traveler is approx. 8.58″x5.11″ in size) I sized my version so that I could make my own refills out of folded 8.5″ x11″ paper.  The folded cover size is 6″x 9″ and the refills are 8.5″x5.25″ after I trim off the feathering at the foredge. The cover is a nice soft leather that will wear very well. I still need to make a book mark and a pen holder.

My version of the Traveler's Notebook

This is the front inside side of the cover. The cover leather wasn’t stiff enough to stand on it’s own so I lined it with a sandwich of bristol board and wool felt. I added a business card pocket and a slash pocket for holding papers, tickets, etc. The inserts are held in with elastic cord that can be tightened with an attached cord lock. There is an elastic cord that holds the book together but I’m thinking of making a version with a strap and velcro closure.

This is the back side of the cover. Another card holder and slash pocket in contrasting colors. I’m thinking of making another with the back pocket a little different. Perhaps an envelope style pocket with a velcro closure. What’s cool about the wool felt is that it comes in an array of colors.

There are two inserts in this book. They are nested with each other but could go in seperately as there are two cords available. One insert is graph paper and the other is a soft flannel color recycled paper. I am planning on making an insert with some Stonehenge, which is my favorite sketching/art paper. I’m also thinking on making a calender and am working on what would be the best way that to utilize Daytimer plastic accessory pockets for further customization.

I really like the idea of a refillable book. The fact that you can put inserts in depending on what you’ll be doing that day is really cool. I’m thinking on calling my version of these books The Itinerant Artist’s/Journalist’s Notebook. What do you think?

If you have any suggestions or ideas to make them better I’d love to hear them.

I hope everyone has a great day.

• • •

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