22 February 2007

Guest Blog: The Curse of the Cross -- Rectified

We're proud to introduce a new feature here at Philofaxy...the Special Guest Blog. Our readers are a thoughtful, articulate bunch, and we knew it was only a matter of time before one of them would ask for a piece of the prime time. It's the first time we've published a reader essay on the front page, but we hope it won't be the last.

So without further ado, here's today's reader story, from Miss Anon E. Mous:

Two years ago, I found myself at a point of having visted the Filofax Web site numerous enough times to warrant my little brother having to comment that "this obsession is getting out of hand." This 'madness' was enough of a worry that he committed to buying me the item I was lusting for; a black personal size cross Filofax.

When it landed on the floor of the hallway with a loud but not quite ominous thud one sunny February morning, I knew my beloved Filofax had arrived. Excitedly, heart palpitating, mouth salivating, and eyes ceasing to move in their sockets, my whole being waited till the final shiny cardboard box was tilted to reveal the dark, luscious, and classy organiser.

Fast forward 24 months... I have taken care of this baby and delighted in its simple design and wondrous beauty, but one thing has eluded me and driven me to distraction enough to prompt me to peruse the Filofax Web pages with manic obsessive regularity again: The silly thing would not lay flat!

Now dear reader, laying flat is one of the most important things an organiser can do for me... Laying flat means that I can glance upon my days plans and plan for my week ahead. Because the little darling did not open flat, and would instead balance precariously on its erect little spine flapping from side to side like a devious little vulture, I had little time or inclination to glance upon or fill in the languishing pages. This ultimately led to me being disorganised again. This was bad news.

The situation was thus that I conspired to dump this little lovely and as mentioned above began coasting the pages of Filofax looking for a alternative that would lay flat... I even began looking to A5s in the hope that my favourite Belmont’s inherent lay-flat-ability would resolve my problems, but then this solution was space consuming and unfeasible, and, frankly, my budget would not permit such spending...

Today after much soul searching and gaining permission from brother (after all he bought it for me and should have a say - plus I needed the go-ahead and hand-holding) I took it upon myself to commit the ultimate act of infliction upon my Filofax... namely physically manipulating my beloved organiser by bending back both the covers (I hear your gasp; don't worry, I supported the spine) and holding them back until my beloved Filofax developed creases where the stress was placed... This took a few goes, and now my perfect, albeit slightly creased, Filofax is laying flat. Hurrah...! The sacrifice has been worth it, now I will use my faithful Filo more often... Yes, I will... I promise. And you know what? It's still gorgeous!

I would love to find out if anyone else has manipulated/customised their Filos for the sake of manageability and organisation...? This would in part make me feel better. It would also be interesting to know what exactly you have had to resort to to make your Filofax more user-friendly…

I feel a little guilty for the violence acted upon my beloved Filo, but the results should be worth the sacrifice.


Miss Anon E. Mous. (a.k.a. AK)


  1. I've done the same thing with my Personal size Filo, and it lies fairly flat now. I've had to do it more than once, since it starts to close up again after a while.

    They're resilient, these little beauties!

  2. I had the same problem with my pocket cross, but could never get it to lay flat. I only liked it for the ring size. I went back to my old standby--a bright yellow Picadilly.

  3. I fixed my old filofax something called a metropole, it would not lie flat eider, i bend it and now it's working fine. Shame is that they should build this into design. My wife bought Belgravia because of this. SOft Leathher you see. I know someone who has made laser printing on his filofax to make it stand out in the company and i must admit when you change something like leather it can have a totally different look. Looks very profesionale Also, he put small cutts in it for it to lay flat. thank you for the blog.

    Marcus B.

  4. More guest blogs please! Does anyone use a specific organization method with their filofaxes? I use GTD but haven't tried it out on the old Filo.

  5. Good morning Nan

    Would you like me to write a smll post on how to fold those papers? -> see philofaxy flickr group

  6. Hello HP - Yes, I would like you to write a post about how you fold A4 sheets into a Personal Filofax, including the tools you use, like the Portable Punch and Swiss Army Knife.

  7. By the way, the address for guest blogs is nanbarber at gmail.

  8. Any pictures of your flat Filofax? Should it be renamed filoflax?

    *skips away to avoid being hit*

  9. There are a number of pictures of Filoflaxes (Flatofaxes?) in the Flicker Philofaxy pool. Here's a link: http://www.flickr.com/groups/40748476@N00/pool/

  10. Thank you Nan for posting my guest blog!

    I will try and get a pic of the creased filofax, have to say the little darling is very stubborn and tried to revert back a few times, I've done a fair few creasing sessions and it's begun to see the light...

    What about FiloFlat?

    :) I'll post a picture in Flickr and post a link here... :)


    Miss Anon E. Mous

  11. I had a lovely chocolate Cross in slimline and found it was too small to take much more than the diary, wouldn't lay flat etc. I sold it and went back to older beloved Windsor personal size. Happy again...

  12. Are you using finsbury? It does have the problem of not laying flat. If you are willing to pay a little more bucks, go for finchley, it's my favorite, and it will lay flat like a beauty. I also have a Lyndhurst, when zip is open, i can also lay flat.