21 July 2011

Reader Under The Spot Light - Saffy


Hi, you all know me as ‘Saffy’. My name is Fiona and I live in Hampshire, U.K. I first came across the Filofax brand when I went to live and work in London in 1986. I was given a hand-me-down Filofax and that was it, I was hooked for life. I live with my husband, teenage daughter and two cats.

1. When did you buy your first Filofax and what was it?
In London in the 80’s it seemed everyone had a Filofax, my work colleagues, strangers on the tube, people walking down the street and I HAD to have my own. I coveted a dark green (Winchester I think) with the smaller ring size of (19mm?) and would go every lunch time to Ryman across the road on the High Street and agonise over which one I would eventually buy. Back then they were around £54.00 if my memory serves me correctly which at the time was nearly half my weekly wage. I was eventually given my first Filofax by my boss, a second hand Winchester (I think) in maroon, it had gold embossing with ‘Harrods’ so doubly impressive to a 19 year old, Harrods and Filofax all in one – WOW! It needed a bit of TLC as it was dried out but those older Filofaxes were made of thick robust leather and meant to last forever. I still have it and it is now a time capsule of the 80’s.


2. What other brands have you used or considered using?

For a couple of years I used Franklyn Covey because the company I worked for were putting their staff through the training course and you came out with the basic vinyl model in black. Sadly I missed the course but did get the binder which I loved due to their 2DPP layout and time management. The starter pack had helpful notes on how to use the organiser and get the most out of it. The cross referencing was invaluable.

3. Out of the organisers you own which is your current favourite (Style and Size)?

I can’t really pick just one. My current favourite would have to be the Plum Compact Osterley because it is the newest and I felt like I waited so long for its release before I finally made it mine. My husband bought it for my recent birthday. In some ways it reminds me of that coveted green Winchester in size and seriousness. I love the slimlines too, I have Adelphi’s which seem ‘fun’ compared to the serious Osterley. And then there is the Baroque which is much like the Malden. I love its soft squishy leather and the note pad pocket in the back and laying flat from the start and, and, and, see, I can’t just pick one.


4. How many Filofax organisers do you own?

Umm,err, ahh, I am really embarrassed by this question and I have terrible Filofax angst and guilt. I will admit to owning 18 (+) thanks to some serious bargains on EBay and at TKMaxx and of course thanks to the ‘enablers’. The ones not counted don’t get a guernsey until I find uses for them or in case I change my mind and decide to sell them on to a loving home or gift them to friends or family. I guess I am a collector.

5. What do you use your Filofax for?

Everything and anything, I have many uses. I like to compartmentalise my life into different Filofaxes so I know exactly where to look for information. For example I have a family organiser, storage filo, quilt-o-fax (inspired by Sharon’s craft-o-fax), master copy of all personal information including family history, passwords etc. I also have one set aside next to the computer with just A-Z tabs and behind those are all my logons, passwords, user names etc which I call my ‘computer companion’. This is particularly handy and it is slowly filling up with my husband’s logon info as well, he-he.


6. What was the feature about Filofax you like most?

Prior to owning a Filofax I would carry an address book and a diary and a note book (all very small ones) so when I discovered the Filofax contained all three in one leather bound file I thought it was an ingenious idea and had to have one. I love that it could replace all three of my little booklets in one. They are so hangeable. I also love that you can personalise it and adjust it to fit into whatever lifestyle you have and whichever direction life takes you with the different variety of refills be it serious for work or fun and colourful for play. You don’t need to be an executive or high flying professional you can be a stay at home mum, student, retiree, etc and it will fit in with your needs. I also love the sheer variety of binders, inserts and accessories we all have our own individual set up and binder preference which makes them so personal to us.

7. If you could design your own Filofax what would it feature?

I have two that I dream of. The first one would have to be a personal sized binder with the smaller 80’s ring size (19 mm). A luxury printed leather like the Osterley/Amazona in a mid-dark green colour, it seems I am still hankering over that green Winchester. The second one would be embossed leather like the Baroque but on the outside. I would love this in two colours, white and red. Two pen loops of course and probably a secretarial pocket in the front inside and the inside back cover would either have the note pad pocket or a simple full length ½ width pocket like in the slimlines. That way I can keep my jotter pads in the back out of the way. It also goes without saying, it would lay flat right out of the box. And an external pocket like on the Kendal would be handy too.

8. How do you carry your Filofax?

Quite simply, in my handbag. I also have a love of handbags so I am never without my Filofax and handbag.

9. Which Filofax in the current range do you like the most? Are you going to buy it?

Again, not just one but two. The Luxe compact in red and the Enigma in White. When I saw the Enigma in the Neal Street shop I was quite surprised, it was silky smooth to the touch and the white one was lovely. The pictures don’t do it justice. I may consider buying the white Enigma as a future purchase if Filofax have another post Christmas sale of 50% off all binders. But no plans at this stage for any new purchases. Although the purple Song Bird may be in the running, for my daughter, of course. I don’t need any more Filofaxes!

10. What is the most you have ever spent on a Filofax? Which model?


The most expensive is the plum Compact Osterley although my husband bought it for me as a birthday present so does that count?

11. Turning to Philofaxy, what do you like the most?


The Philofaxy community is one of the friendliest and helpful I have come across. When I first discovered Philofaxy I lurked in the background just reading all the posts and comments and finally plucked up the courage to leave a comment. Discovering a community of fellow Filofax junkies out there also made me feel a bit more ‘normal’. The meet ups in London are the highlight of my year.

12. And what do you not like about Philofaxy?

I was going to agree with a previous ‘Reader Under the Spotlight’ about the brownness but now that it is ‘Cotton Cream’ how could I not like that?


13. What was the last music album CD you bought or downloaded?

This is embarrassing. I rarely if ever buy CD’s or download music. All that gets played in my house (full blast, may I add) is teenager style music eg; Rihanna, Taylor Swift, Justin Bieber, Eminem and some band with a scary name that I have no idea what they sing but their lyrics sound offensive.......ha-ha,..........I am officially middle aged after saying that.

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