01 June 2012

Free for All Friday No. 185

This year, I'm using a brown leather Filo with Cotton Cream paper. I was looking for something restful for my eyes. Black ink only (although it really should be brown, too.) Lately, though, I've been wanting more color. I remember a time when I used a Franklin Covey organizer where the background pattern of the pages changed with each passing month, and I carried 2 fountain pens with different colored inks for personal and business entries. Do you think you function better with more colors in your organizer, or less?

82 comments:

  1. Hi Nan

    I too am using a brown binder (ochre Malden Personal) with cotton cream this year, and it looks so much better than the old, multi-coloured set-up I previously had. I used to be a big fan of colour-coding (my Time manager system had built-in colour coding for the sections, and the various inserts matched the dividers), but this suits me just fine.

    Like you, I would prefer to be using brown ink, but I seem to have had a major fountain pen fail this year, so that's not the case at the moment. In any case, I insist on keeping my diary in pencil only - otherwise the whole thing just looks a mess as things get changed and moved around. The Malden, and most other Personal binders that I am aware of, only come with one pen loop, and I'm not a fan of the home made loops, so I have to choose, pen or pencil, and currently pencil is winning. It would be nice, though, to be able to take a good fountain pen and brown ink to that lovely cotton cream paper.

    The biggest change for me in moving to cotton cream was that I had to give up the idea of 'bespoke' inserts, as FF in their usual customer-disregarding way only do *one* diary format, lined paper, address and to-do in cotton cream. Often I find myself astounded by FF's lack of interest in providing perfectly reasonable options, but sadly I've got used to it now. And I don't want to pay £10 a pop for Mont Blanc or other better-quality refills, who in any case don't give a decent range either......

    The net result is that I've re-jigged my entire system to run on lined paper only, thus saving a fortune on keeping the full range of inserts (although I still have a drawer-full in both A5 and Personal if anyone would like them for a small consideration). The result is smart, works well, and I'm very pleased. And as the end of the year comes into focus I won't be going through the usual annual angst re next year's diary inserts. Result!

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    1. David,
      I would be interested in your collection of A5 and personal inserts. Please email me at femfuller@gmail.com what you would like for them.
      Thanks, Fiona

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    2. hi Fiona

      You've got mail - as the saying goes!

      D

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    3. @ David - why not try a Frixion 0.7 in brown? A 0.7 is almost as smooth as a fountain pen, and a lot less messy. Yes, 0.7 inserts run out faster than a normal roller ball, but this is offset by reduced paper costs.

      Since moving to Frixion I find I can now concentrate on improving my gtd system, rather than worrying about the amount of paper I'm using.

      20 sheets of cotton cream per day = £700 a year :-(
      1 frixion insert per week = £75 per year :-)

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    4. Hi Neil

      Good idea, but I'm kinda 'off' Frixion since their tendency for the ink to disappear in warm weather was pointed out - not that we get *too* much of that here in West Wales!

      Alas, I'm also old-fashioned and the fountain pen holds a special place of affection....

      20 sheets a day?........what are you *doing* there? :) This is one of my reservations about GTD - loads of lists. LOADS of lists......

      Thanks for the thought though :)Have a great weekend.

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    5. Hi David,

      I agree that using frixion is risky from a heat damage perspective, and that re-freezing would be pointless if the paper has already been used several times. I use a Pilot V5 in my master index faxes for that very reason, but a make a point of making sure that my "action fax" is always in my pocket and, if the temperature rose sufficiently to start erasing the ink then I'd probably have more pressing things to worry about, lol.

      I use an average of 20 sheets a day because one action or process goes on each page. That way, I can move the pages around and reduce the requirement to write the same actions down twice.

      I do share your passion for fountain pens, however, and use Rhodia 90gsm webnotebooks as my journal, but find the process of uncapping and posting a fountain pen, perhaps dozens of times a day, whilst an undeniably theraputic experience at home in the evening with a glass of wine, can be a bit of a palava if you're having to uncap and post (with two hands) 50-100 times a day. Plus moving up from 72gsm paper (I use moleskine paper in my fax) to 90gsm paper is a weight increase of 25%, and I want to travel fast and light (I just use the inserts themselves when I'm out and about, discarding the pen body completely, for instance).

      Thanks for your kind comments, David, have a great weekend too.

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    6. David - my brother uses one of these: http://www.thepaperie.co.uk/lamy-st-twin-pen-steel.html in his journal it is a very slim twin pen with a pen and pencil in one - they also do a tri version with two pens (different colours) and a pencil: http://www.thepaperie.co.uk/lamy-st-tri-pen-steel.html but this one is thicker. I quite fancy one myself for carrying around as they are neat and smart.

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    7. A terracotta orange, earthy orange, works as a colour for highlighting on cotton cream; without looking out of place or ruining the overall style. Dark red, ie claret, can work too but some inks can look like brown after a while due to fading.

      I have tried waterman red and green for occasional underlining, or for drawing a small star, and doesn’t look completely out of place. However, writing in a strong colour such as red, green, or blue, in an organiser based upon balanced earthy tones just doesn’t work.

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    8. Nan, in the past 20+ years I had been using Franklin Covey and had purchased probably over 20 binders and all of their various inserts. As much as I love, love, love color, I found that over the years I went from very decorated pages to very plain pages. Now that I'm using Filofax exclusively (except for a couple of remaining Franklin binders that I couldn't bear to part with and are now used for storage or other purposes) I just love the cotton cream paper. It is so restful to my eyes. I, too, love brown ink and have been using Le Pen in brown (a very, very slimline felt tip). It's okay, I'm not in love with it on the cotton cream but it is very fine point which I like and fits well in some of those tight pen holders. I do generally like Le Pens and use them for other purposes. For my color fix, I experiment with colored dividers, colored binders, colored notepaper and occasional sticker here and there but I find I do better if my pages have a cleaner and uncluttered look. And I do love the orange highlighter on the cream but have yet to find a burnt orange...mine is more citrus looking.

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    9. When I referred to an earth orange for highlighting, I didn’t mean a shop bought stablo boss highlighter. I was referring to my practice of mixing fountain pen inks to obtain a desired colour, using a syringe to fill plastic cartridges, and then using a fountain pen as a highlighter…but only highlighting something by underlining, stars or arrows.

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    10. Scoot - Mont Blanc do this colour - it was named after Ghandi - not sure if it still for sale as it was a special edition. You can however get these colours in other inks - here is a good example: http://thewritingdesk.co.uk/showproduct.php?brand=&cat=ink&subr=orange - the Diamine inks are really good value, nice ink and made in the UK. Some greens look really nice on the cotton cream as well. Waterman also do a brown.

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    11. Not sure why everyone dislikes bright colors on cotton cream. I use cotton cream because of the layout, not the color -- I like equal spaces for all the days. I doodle borders on the upper and lower page edges each week, and write my Monday and Friday TV watching "treats" in color. Other than that, I write with black ink, although I've considered using my brown Staedtler triplus fineliner as my everyday pen. (If I could buy just a brown one somewhere I would, but these are my favorite doodling pens and I like the set to stay about the same usage so they all run out near the same time.) My colors of choice are bright pink and orange, light blue, light green and brown.

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    12. @ Forever New - I just switched to the Fineliners, too! And not to enable, but you can get just the brown at Jet Pens here

      I've got the 10 color set, but am glad to know I can grab extra individual colors if one runs out!

      Ooh, and Ray, do you see what I did there? Thanks for the linking advice!

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    13. I love my Waterman purple ink on the cream pages. It's quite a dark purple and looks fab!

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    14. Thanks Alison, a very interesting link. I think the ancient orange, which is listed under the brows, more closely matches my orange/terracotta ink. If only they look the same on paper, which with my fine italic nibs means they usually look light or faded … and so I tended to favour the stronger depth of colour in Waterman inks.

      Matching the colour of inks to paper reminds me of colour matching before decorating!

      I moved away from Mont Blanc inks, as most available for sale appeared to be old and often separated, not working well at all. And then there were the horror stories of peoples pens leaking, not just on aeroplanes, problems that automatically disappeared when they moved away from Mont Blanc inks.

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    15. J, thanks for the enabling. I just had my birthday and have some money to burn (make that INVEST). I feel that money sliding through my fingers.

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    16. Oooops! I'm usually pretty good at not enabling, too! And I've never even ordered from JetPens, lol!

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    17. Neil, What kind of Frixion pen do you use in your Moleskine mini?

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  2. Has anybody used their filofax to plan for a baby on the way? If so what size did you use and what did you put in it? I want to make sure i am ultra organized before this baby arrives

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    1. @ Christa - you're going to be gather ing info in all sorts of filo-incompatible ways; booklets, forms, emails, written notes, letters.

      So, file these, but refer to these pieces of information in chronological order in your filofax. Also note any vital numbers or codes. Then, circle filed items in blue and inportant numbers in red (for example).

      Take a picture of each document (and email) on your phone (hospitals are notorious for their lack of a 3g signal, so don't rely on internet cloud storage for your docs) so, with your lightweight fax (you do want it to be lightweight, don't you?) and your phone, you have everything to hand at all times.

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    2. Are you in the UK? If so, get a decent (waterproof) A4 folder for your maternity notes as they look a bit ragged by the end. Plus, if you get letters or printouts of blood test results, etc, they're easy to slip in and keep together.

      For all other baby-related stuff - lists of things to buy, names, hospital bag packing list, etc - I'd just set up a new section in your current filo.

      TBH given that you need to carry your green notes everywhere anyway, I don't think a standalone filo is the right solution for this!

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    3. PS - Congratulations! When are you due?

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    4. Thanks babs & neil for your input. Im due Jan 13th, so a while off, but i just want to make sure that everything is in order and goes smoothly and well organised

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  3. Only my second post but can I just take a moment to complain about Filofax's plastic hole punches? I purchased one from Staples a few months ago as a travel item, and after about 10 sheets of ordinary old A4 (folds into my A5 Cuban), it's making raggedy holes and I feel like I should just carry an old knitting needle the way they look. Surely it's not beyond Filofax to commission a nice aluminium job that operates in the same way. I really think Filofax is missing out on so much of the Filofax 'after market' with things like this. They must know we're addicted and any bit of monogrammed old tat will have us swooning, but really Filofax. Your punches have me dizzy.

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    1. When you're out and about, just use a pencil or ball point. Yes, it will be a bit ragged but, when you get home, use a single hole punch (£2 from Staples) to overpunch those ragged holes and all that raggedness will magically disappear.

      Don't carry a kntting needle in your bag - you'll get arrested, lol.

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    2. I have a collection of hole punches and I finally found (I think) Rapesco(?)ones for A5 size and I purchased 2 for the Personal/Pocket size. All together it cost me about half the metal Filofax punch, but I wanted something nice for when you're travelling, rather than put a giant weight in my bag. Pleeeaaaase Filofax make a nice portable one. I like the plastic design. I just hate the material it is made from.

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    3. I used a single hole punch, like this one....

      http://www.rapidonline.com/Office-IT/Single-hole-punch-80034

      Use an existing fax page as a stencil to mark the centre of holes. Take the bottom off the single hole punch. Turn the hole punch and sheet upside down so that you can see the marks to be punched through the punch's hole.

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  4. OK, I need a quick answer on this one....

    The Lovely Emma has kindly offered to buy me a fountain en for my birthday (next week) so I can get my brown ink option up and running in my Malden. She *says* she has a budget of £100 but I'm determined that it won't be that much total spend (cartridges included)

    Can anyone recommend a specific fountain pen, cartridge is fine, but even better would be a reservoir pen in the old fashioned mode? Best of all would be if it's available from City organiser, as we trust them to get it here by the end of next week.

    Over to you.....

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    Replies
    1. Best writing experience under £100?

      Lamy or Kaweco. Converters are available for both, to remove the need for cartidges but, if you're out and about with your new pen, cartridges are easy to carry in your filofax.

      Why not try a Kaweco Classic Sport, in brown. Google a UK company called "Cult Pens". The unique design of the Waweco, which dates from the 1930's, makes it short enough to carry in the pocket, but long enough to write with when the cap is posted.

      Hope this is useful, David.

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    2. I'm having no end of trouble with my Lamy Safari fountain pen, it's missing as i'm writing every so often and it's driving me nuts!! Having to send it back so they can have a look at it, anybody else had a similar problem, i've tried flushing it but this made no difference. I'm using a Leuchtturm A5 notebook which has fountain pen friendly paper!!

      Thanks in advance :)

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    3. @Neil thanks for that....will check it out! At the moment I'm very attracted to this:-

      http://www.penshop.co.uk/default/brands/cross/cross-affinity-jewel-blue-fountain-pen.html

      However, we've discovered a stash of fountain pens at home which used to belong to my late father-in-law, and although not as much things of beauty as the above, the idea of perpetuating their use is quite attractive...so we'll see.

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    4. I know Lamy Safaris are very popular, but I've never been able to get on with them. The shaped section grip doesn't work for me and it's just too big and clunky. Put it next to the beautiful Lamy 2000 and it's no contest. But then the 2000 costs £175. A good half way house is the Lamy Studio, which Cult Pens have for about £45. I think you'll find that a more elegant and traditional writing experience.

      I agree with Neil that the Sport is a good pen, too, but bear in mind it only takes cartridges so your choice of inks will be more restricted unless you're prepared to fill your own with a syringe.

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    5. @alison I was just speaking to a chap from The pen Shop in Cardoff (*very* helpful people!) and he was saying that it's sometimes the ink rather than the pen, or a combination of the two, which causes the problem. For instance, they don't recommend the use of Parker ink with the Cross pen I linked to above, although there's nothing wrong with Parker ink itself - they just don't 'like' one another.

      So maybe a change of ink would solve the problem?Or is you're on cartridges, £4-£5 for a barrel converter?

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    6. Hi Ray

      Lamy Studio is a good looking pen indeed. The Kaweko is as well, but I think it's going to have to be something which takes a barrel converter. Just going to put my late father-in-law's pens in to soak, and one of those already has a converter in it....could be a result....

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    7. David - I can't recommend this pen enough: http://www.cityorganiser.co.uk/acatalog/The_Hemisphere_Deluxe_Metal_Fountain_Pen_by_Waterman.html

      My other half got me it for Xmas - it writes beautifully, has a convertor and takes cartridges for on the run (make sure city organiser include a convertor - it is an optional extra but most places will pop one in if you push them). It's also quite slim so fits beautifully in my Amazona pen loop (which is all leather so no room for adjustment). Waterman are an old established firm who will look after you and your pen over the many years you will be together - it comes with a warranty which I think you can extend (mine is covered for about 5 years now!).

      I love Lamy's and have had no problem - but I am fussy about which ink I use - I love mont blanc ink when I can afford it, but you have to go along way to beat Waterman ink which is very cheap, easily available, and comes in lots of colours!

      Fountain pens is a huge hobby of mine and I have them in all price ranges. I agree that Alison's problem may be her ink, but also she may just have a duff nib, which can be placed for under a £5. hopefully they will do that for her. Ink/pen combinations can be tricky as some nibs run dry and some wet, and some inks run dry and wet also, so you have to get the right combination - i.e. a dry nib with a dry ink = skipping and problems, a wet nib with wet ink - floods of ink! Better nibs can be adjusted to make them dryer or wetter, but the price of the Lamy Safari means it is probably cheaper to just get a new nib.

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    8. I now have a small pot of pens in to soak...mostly older Parker and Schaeffer models. One of them (the Schaeffer) already has a barrel converter on it, the others I'm hopeful i can get converters for. So if that all works out, it will change things a bit.

      @alison, that certainly is a beautiful pen! Most likely, if we are still looking tomorrow, we'll go to the pen shop in Cardiff, as the guy was so helpful when I called he deserves the business, and they seem to have all the converters etc right there, along with ranges of inks. as I now have access to a range of fountain pens (old and maybe new), I plan to go for different ink colours. With my work, a red pen is always guaranteed use!

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    9. @neil I've got a couple of Rhodia no. 11 tablets which I sometimes use for making on-the-fly to-do notes (they're perforated so the individual slips of paper can then be detached and put into the weekly review pile as tasks). Paper quality is outstanding (cf. FF) and very fountain pen friendly. Outstanding. If I wasn't a FF user I think I'd use Rhodia all the time - or maybe Moleskine

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    10. @ Amanda - if you're using parker ink in a Lamy, that is the problem. Try Sheaffer Skrip ink.

      @ David and Ray - A better quality Lamy than the Safari, but well within budget, is the Lamy ST (slim enough to fit filofax pen loops too). The Lamy will take a standard converter, and some stores (eg John Lewis will fit one at no extra charge) - otherwise it's £3-4 and very easy to fit. The Kaweco, although too short for a standard converter, will fit the Monteverde mini converter perfectly. Alternatively, smear silicone grease onto the threads and fill the whole barrel with an ink syringe. I'm just about to buy two Kawecos myself, one in brown (for brown ink) and one in green (for green ink). The barrel fill method is a little risky, in my opinion, so I will try some of the many cartridge manufacturers and fit converters if neccessary. I love the fact that they are cheap enough to have one per ink colour.

      @ David - a Rhodia tablet forms part of my "action fax" modile pocket office, specifically for the same purpose as you use them for, and yes, they are superb for fountain pen ink, even though the tablets are only 80gsm. The Kaweco fountain pens are for carrying in a pocket so that I can give people a handwritten note on interesting paper, using interesting ink - far more effective than a standard business card, and unusual paper and ink can help stimulate conversation at the beginning or end of meetings.

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    11. @Neil great idea about giving people handwritten notes....I do a lot of networking (sounds like you do too), and I like that. What paper do you use for that, the Rhodia tablet?

      I also send handwritten 'covering letters' on letterhead when I'm mailing stuff (rare these days) - just another way of differentiating and adding a touch of personality

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    12. @Alison. I had constant problems with my Lamy, tried many inks and found improvement but no solution. I finally lost the blasted thing and that was that.

      @David, I found an antique Kaweco Sport on ebay. Piston filler, wonderful flexy gold nib. Fantastic pen, but made of rather brittle plastic. Newer ones are bulletproof. But they do run short cartridges. I suppose that could be convenient actually? You could carry several with you.

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    13. Neil - I'm surprised you find moleskin paper fountain pen friendly - I've never had a very high opinion of their paper as I found it feathers and you get a lot of bleed through. Rhodia are wonderful as are Clairefontaine. The Writing Desk (who I linked to above) have some lovely writing paper which is all fountain pen friendly - I was tempted to get an embosser with my address to use with it, but the cost is a bit prohibitive!

      I'm so pleased to find some many enthusiastic fountain pen users here - I thought I was a bit alone in that hobby! Do you all look at The Fountain Pen Network? Worth checking out if you don't - it's a very friendly fountain pen forum and they talk endlessly about fountain pens, paper and ink (a but like Philofaxy!).

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    14. @ Alison. I never said I fountain pen with Moleskine paper - it's very absorbant with far too much bleed through. I use frixion with my moleskine paper and fountain pen with my Rhodia pads and webnotebooks. Fountain pen is also great for my ARC filled A4.

      What I would say in Moleskine's defence is that it appears to be superb quality for use with pencil and ball pen, and continues to be the paper of choice for writers and reporters who travel and have to keep their kit weight to an absolute minimum. For example, a 240 page A5 moleskine weighs 30 grams less than a 192 page A5 Rodia webnotebook.

      Personally, I love fountain pens, and think it would be a good idea to make them compulsory at school. Apart from anything, disposable plastic pens are an absolute travesty with regards to global warming, when a fountain pen can cost just a few pounds and last a lifetime. And we should all be alerted to the fact that paper manufacture uses 30,000 Litres of water per ton, so we should try and re-use what we can. A bit off topic - sorry. Yes, the fountain pen network is a good source of information.

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    15. @ David - re the Rhodia tablet.
      Yes, that's exactly what it's for. I know you use a No 11 pad, but I use a No 12, which fits perfectly into the outer pocket of my Kensington (I guess you haven't seen my video yet - check out my set of three action fax vids that Steve included in yesterday's video round up).
      It is a performance; the deliberate folding of the distinctive orange card, the uncapping and posting of the fountain pen, the silent surprise at the flambuoyant ink colour, and the pressing of the message as you write a personal note. Far more memorable than a printed business card>

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    16. Thanks for all your help, i'm using Lamy cartridges, i'll send it back and see if they have any luck with it. I'm disappointed though, it's the only fountain pen I have, not used one for years and I use it just for Journaling on a daily basis, started my new journal about a week ago, will have to go out and buy a fountain pen to keep me going in the meantime, because i'm a bit obsessive like that. Wish I could afford an expensive one :(

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    17. Nice idea, Neil, I'm definitely going to consider doing that!

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    18. Sorry Neil - I obviously didn't read your post properly!! I also agree with your thoughts on fountain pens in schools (I've bought several children of my acquaintance the Lamy children's fountain pen).

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    19. @ Alison - re fountain pens for children.
      What a fantastic idea. I'm sure kids find filling and using a fountain pen more exciting than a school biro.

      Some great posts here today - there should be more chat about pens and paper. I rarely post, but today I've posted rather a lot, lol.

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    20. @ Alison and Alison Reeves

      I'm also on the Fountain Pen Network :) and I agree, it's nice to know there are more fountain pen-obsessed people here. ;)

      Alison, have you looked at the Lamy Logo? It's in the affordable range of Lamys. I use mine in my work project (freelancing) Filofax. It is slim enough to fit in most penloops.

      Regarding Moleskine notebooks. I just tried writing in one with one of my fountain pens and there is absolutely no bleed-through, minimal see-through and just a little bit of feathering. I'll try to remember to take a photo when it's not 04:45 in the morning... XD; *just realized how "late" it is*

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    21. In place of a business card, I use a 3x5 index card. I print them in portrait mode with fine lines printed on the top 3/4 and my contact details in the bottom 1/4. I use these to make sure that as well as a personal note people get my contact details too. I use the trick of not having my mobile number in the printed details so there will always be something to write.

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  5. I like to use coloured pens in my filofax, makes things really stand out and it's pretty too!!

    I've just taken delivery of the magenta domino mix filofax for my daughters birthday, i've never had a domino myself but thought it would be perfect for her starting high school in Sep. It has no credit card slots (she doesn't need any) but it's a lovely filofax if anybody was wondering what it was like!!

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  6. Hi everyone "waves"

    This is the only place I could post my excitement without looking like a madwoman, lol.

    Yesterday I received my first Filofax purchase - YAY!!! It's a personal sized chameleon in aqua and it arrived while I was leaving for work. You don't know how much I wanted to call in late so I could spend some time with this bad boy :-D. Kept thinking about it all day. Unfortunately finishing work after 9pm meant that I haven't had time to have a proper gander but Saturday is Filofax day!!!

    I purchased the Filofax brand new and sealed from a seller on eBay - only £20 plus shipping. A barging.

    So glad to have officially joined the club. I've been searching and deliberating since February about the planner I would get. Obviously Philofaxy and other like blogs has just fuelled my obsession ;-D. I've bought so many accessories in anticipation - stickers, pens, crafting, card etc... before I even got my Filofax.

    I originally was looking at an A5 planner. I will still get one (planning my second purchase and I haven't even set up my first, lol). This will be my main planner with everything in it; diary, journal, info, goal setting, projects etc... I don't mind carrying such a big or heavy bag as I usually do anyway and I love big bags. But I wanted a smaller Filofax (personal is as small as I can go) for the days I take a clutch/body cross bag or just want to pop out quickly. This will only have an agenda, to do list, some-need-to-know info and note pages. I'm happy to spend time reconciling both planners - I think this will be therapeutic and help me plan my week.

    I'm even considering getting one for work too. And I'm looking to purchase a personal for my mum and a pocket for my dad. OBSESSIVE I know - trying to get others on the FiloCRACK, lol.

    Sorry for the long post I'm just so excited and can't wait to get started using my planner.

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    1. Welcome to the filo club, Keji :)
      You'll find that we all share your excitement about receiving new filos! I've also tried to convert my husband & family, but have only managed to get my Dad into them so far...

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    2. ! I just ordered the Personal Chameleon in Aqua as well. It's due here tomorrow (Sat). I was shocked (and pleased) to learn that it had shipped less than 2 hours after I ordered it. I've been tracking the fed ex online and barring any unusual circumstances should be here Saturday. I figured I would have to wait till Monday or Tuesday for its arrival but looks like I'll have a Filofax weekend as well. Yay! I am in the US and ordered from US website...it was 30% off and free shipping as well. Congrats on your first purchase. I'll soon have 4 Filofaxes and have yet to figure out all their purposes! I will be watching for future posts from you on your Aqua Chameleon.

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    3. Thanks for the lovely welcome Anita.

      I was really trying to be like you with only the one Filofax but they are just so gorgeous I can see my self going down a very, very slippery slope, lol. But in terms of agenda/ life planning I said that I won't have more than 3 (gosh that sounds loads). An A5 work planner (maybe) that will never leave the office; my main everything A5 and a streamlined personal (which I now have).

      Any other Filofaxes I would purchase after that would need to be very considered and be for special projects, like a Masters project fax, launching a business fax or building my home fax (all things that are on my personal goals list).

      It was my mother who inspired me to get a Filofax. She had one in the 80's and I recently came across it while spring cleaning. She hasn't used one in years as he relying instead on bound diaries and note books – but I've noticed they are not working for her. She ends up writing on bits of paper and envelopes so she really needs more organisation.

      My dad constantly forgets things and is terrible at planning. As he usually only goes outs with his pockets filled (phone, keys, wallet) I'm hoping a small Filofax will help him just be more together.

      Yeah I’m starting to sound like a street pusher – of Filofaxes, lol.

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    4. Keji
      Welcome to the club...

      Steve

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    5. @ Cheryl - we're filo twins. Yay to a Filofax weekend.

      @ Steve - so when I get my newsletter and badge for the Filofax Club :-D.

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    6. @ Keiji - you cannot have too many filofaxes.

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    7. @ Keji & Cheryl: Congrats on your Personal Aqua Chameleon! I've been considering a Compact myself for a while now, and am always happy to read about others getting theirs.

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    8. Oh happy Filo day! I just now opened my new Personal Aqua Chameleon and she's a beauty! But no colored tabs and no frosted page marker as described? Kind of disappointing. Think I will contact Filofax about that later. But my teeny bit of letdown over that has been overshadowed by my excitement that the mail truck just went by 2 minutes ago and in about 2 minutes I am walking to the mailbox to get my new A5 Chocolate Finchley! Oh happy day! Two Filo's in one day??!! I don't know how that happened; the A5 was due Tuesday but when 'checking in' with tracking the package an hour ago I saw it was already at my home town's post office! The mail always gets delivered on our street by 1pm and its early today. So signing off for now to take a stroll to the mail box!!!

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    9. Yep picked up my A5 Chocolate Finchley from the mailbox 5 minutes ago. She's a beauty. Nothing like 2 boxes to open in one day. Now if only I had time to fiddle around with them but alas duty calls--so it will have to wait for later. But they sure look pretty on my desk. I think the Personal Aqua Chameleon will play nice with the A5 Chocolate Finch as soon as I figure out their respective purposes. :) Have a nice weekend all.

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    10. @ Cheryl - hope you're having a lovely weekend. 2 new Filofaxes in 1 day, I would have spasmed from the excitement. Please keep us informed on your set up and how you use the Filos.

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  7. For the fountain pen users, try Noodlers. They make a broad range of colors, they are all archival, they even make several that have a lubricant in them. I have a broad range of pens and it has worked well in all of them. I have several Lamy Safaris and all of them do well with Noodlers. I, like David, only use pencil (Pentel P205) in my Filo with 4H lead as it doesn't smear and works very well for me.

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    1. Oh yeah, forgot to write that above. I usually use Noodlers ink. (when I'm too broke, I resort to the default cartridges)

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  8. BTW has anyone updates on the availability of the new slimline A5's?

    I think they were due in June?

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    1. Checks calendar... it's only the 1st.. but of course as soon as we hear anything we will let you know within hours or sometimes minutes of the news getting to us.....

      Steve

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    2. It's like hours into June already Steve!
      :)

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  9. Seconding Amanda's question on new sizes, when are the new 30mm personals coming?
    Beautiful black calf leather?
    Dark brown calf leather?
    Manly stuff, please.

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    1. Or reds, purples, aquas ....

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    2. As much as I love colors, I am yearning for a rich deep saddle tan in buttery soft squeezable leather. Sigh...

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    3. "Manly stuff, please."

      Ah, I'd sell my granny for a Personal 30mm in oiled navy leather... give it a brass ring mechanism, and options of a chunky brass zip, and I'd sell everyone else's granny as well!!

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  10. Wow, this FFAF hits all of my major (pen and paper) preoccupations: how pen+ink interact, how [ink+pen]+paper interact, and -- more recently -- whether or not to use color for more than just call-outs (underlining and arrows).

    For years, I've used only fine-tipped black roller ball or gel ink pens in my Filofax, but have just purchased and started using a Uni Style-Fit multi-pen for color-coding. It's been two weeks now and I'm still ambivalent. It definitely helps me quickly assess whether my day and week are "balanced," but I do much prefer an all-black (all-gray when I'm using fountain pen) page.

    I've experienced bleed-through with fountain pens on Filofax calendar paper for years now (not their lined note paper, though). When I started using a Filofax in the mid-90s, their calendar stock held up just fine, but that's definitely no longer the case. I toyed with the idea of going back to fountain pen for my planner this year because I'm using a Maruman Data Plan refill (Maruman paper is fountain-pen friendly), but after so many years of resignedly using fine-tipped rollerballs on Filofax paper, I realized that none of my fountain pens have fine enough nibs for my week-with-notes planning pages: my pen collection has diverged dramatically in that respect! I use 0.38mm rollerballs but my favorite fountain pen is a gold-nibbed EF Pelikan, on the wet side and a fairly broad EF (even for a German pen). I have tiny handwriting, which is useful for planning, but I like to relax and embiggen it when actually writing, thus the divergence.

    I tried to get a Lamy Safari up and running early this year, but the nib squeaked and skipped and fought me until I simply gave up. It's so fascinating how some people really do well with the Safari and others can't even get them to write an entire sentence without problems. I thought it was a matter of ink, but now I think it might instead have to do with writing angles and the specific construction of the steel nib.

    Noodlers ink is the other incredibly polarizing fountain pen item! Some people love it, but I've only ever had problems with it gunking up my pens' nibs. My current favorite ink is the Pilot Iroshizuku line, which is pricy but oh so lovely. It strikes the proper balance in the flow department for me.

    Uhm, thus ends my lengthy monologue on pen, ink, and Filofaxes. Hope everyone has a nice weekend with their pen and paper arsenals!

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  11. Just a short comment on the Lamy Safari: I found they all were a bit scratchy in the beginning. But after they are written-in, they are so wonderfully smooth and delightful! I use the regular Lamy cartridges btw.

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  12. Wow, there is a lot going on today. I'll add in two bits:

    I am a color fanatic in my filo. I used to use all black in previous planners, and I think that's what drew me away from all of them. I LOVE being able to see instantly what are my work to dos, appointments, personal to dos, etc. I get made fun of all the time, but for a system that works it is totally worth it!

    As far as the Lamy Safari- have any of you who are having issues tried a different nib? I found the nib mine came with was a bit skippy/scratchy, but as soon as I switched to the 1.1 mm italic nib I was hooked! Admittedly a bit too big for most Filo usage, but it makes my rubbish handwriting amazing for letters and notes! Just a thought, as the Safari is really a great, inexpensive pen. Although I have noticed a small crack in the cap on mine... but I carry it everywhere!

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    1. I just don't expect to buy a fountain pen and have to buy a new nib for it, maybe it doesn't suit me, i'll send it back, see what they say and maybe try a different style!!

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    2. I agree with you Alison - I have at least half a dozen Safari's and they are all fine so you shouldn't have a problem. I find the black nibs smoother. Also if you buy from The Writing Desk (no affiliation just a happy customer) they test all their pens/nibs before they are sent out and you can choose which nib you want. I like an oblique broad, but for my filofaxes I tend to use a medium nib because of space. I have a VERY broad nib that I love to use to write cards.

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    3. I'll second the quality of service from The Writing Desk. I ordered a few nibs from there, and they were wonderful from ordering to shipping!

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    4. Ooh, fountain pen forum! I have a Lamy question as well. I've read good things about J. Herbin ink, and bought 2 bottles of it to use for my Lamys. And I'm not liking the ink at all. They don't seem to write true-to-color on the Lamys and they've been skipping like crazy. I got tired of it and switched to the Lamy cartridges, and now they're fine, so I don't know if it's the ink. I've seen swatches of the inks with Lamy pens and they looked great, so I don't know if it's me or the pen or the ink! I use an EF nib by the way.

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    5. I am with J on this one - I use colors in my planner, mainly to differentiate between types of to-dos, appointments, notes, etc. It makes it easy to see what types of things I need to do or where I need to be without having to read all of the details - a quick glance. And now that I've been doing that for a while, I couldn't go back to one or two colors - my Filo would look so bland!

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  13. I love colours, and the fact that they add another layer of visibility of ones appointment is just super.
    Therefore, I always have a blue, green and red pen in my filofax. Blue is for appointments, green is for contact (phonecalls or email that I have to make/write that day) and red is for to dos. It works just perfect for me - and before including red and green, everything was just a blur and I had to skim everything that I have written in my planner. Now - having 5 min for email I can just concentrate on all written in green.
    Further more, if i have to hightligt things in really busy periods - I have found that using Pilot BP-S Matic Fine (which can be found in all standard colours) allows me to using a yellow highligthing pen without making the appointment blurred and the highlighting pen blue :)

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  14. Fewer colours the better for me these days, although my handbag Fax gets the coloured paper I don't love that much to use for random thoughts, shopping lists, etc.

    I find too many colours distracting and use sepia-tinted or lightly colour-saturated images on my DIY inserts. I didn't always feel the same way, but did always prefer pastels over the primary coloured dividers you get in some Faxes, they're my personal Filofax nightmare!

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