15 August 2008

Free for All Friday No. 10

OK, so we skipped a week in there.

Thank you for all your great comments on recent posts.

What's new in your Philofaxy lives?



  1. Happy Friday! I'm really itching to pick up a Filo! I currently have a compact sized circa planner (newly revamped) and found a nice lot of refills I want to purchase that are 3-3/4 by 6-3/4 which happens to be the personal sized filofax (i think) too. I could switch between the two and not be SOL :)

    Any one want to fuel my filofax fire? lol ...

  2. This afternoon I stopped by the local paperie and checked out the Mini Finchley. I still have two Lizells for when my current one dies, but for a brief, mad moment, I contemplated buying the Mini so it would match my Personal Finchley. Such temptation!

    I made a more involved version of the FC Weekly Compass this week and I swear it helped me accomplish quite a bit in an otherwise low energy week.

    How is everyone else doing?

  3. I finally received the Filofax hole punch for my A5 Hampstead that I've had on order for a while, and it's fantastic. Because I use the day-to-a-page layout, I can print my travel itineraries/conference programs/etc on A5 paper straight out of Outlook or Word, punch them, and slip them into the appropriate spot in the planner.

    I've also made my own templates for task lists and project tracking which I can print as needed, and it's made updating my address book very straightforward, by printing straight from Outlook.

    I'll be posting my templates shortly on Organised Life for anyone who's interested.

  4. Hi,

    I'm so happy today! My husbund, my baby abd i were downtown fore some shopping. we went to the local book and office supplystore. and they have already diary refills for 2009! I've made an appontmant with the store that i'll buy it half of october. they are saving it for me. i want the same refill for next year. it's a 1 week on 2 pages in 5 languages. i like that one because thera is equal space for every day and an extra 'box'for the entire week.

    and they don't have paper refills in stock because they sell them sometimes. but they can order everything i want from Filofax!!!

    greets from a tired and happy Rose. (yes my english sucks now bacause i'm tired.)

  5. I am extremely excited because I have ordered a purple A5 Finsbury! Earlier this year I switched from Personal to A5, and got a green Finsbury because I wanted some color, and none of the other colors appealed to me. But, purple is my favorite color, so I was thrilled when recently the A5 Finsbury came out in purple! I ordered it as an early birthday present to myself, along with my 2009 refills, a 2010 vertical year planner, and a new Europe map (mine is so old it still has Yugoslavia on it!). So I will be very excited to get my new purple Filo and get it all decked out!

  6. I have a couple of questions about paper size compatibility.
    Do the "personal" pages also fit the "A5" binders?
    And will "mini" pages fit into "personal" binders?
    I have found that some "pocket" pages can fit the "personal" size binders. The ones that do have elongated holes at the top and bottom two locations.

    I'd also be interested to hear how other people manage to work with different sizes and interchanging leaves.

    The fact that smaller sized leaves would also fit into the larger sized binders used to be cited years ago as one of the benefits of using the filofax systems, but it seems like the degree of compatibility has gone down a bit.

  7. Hi Sara! There are so many Circa refills now, I'm tempted myself. I love Levenger stuff anyway.

    Welcome Vidya!

    David, I'll be sure to check out your site!

    Lovely Rose, congratulations on your purchase! Sounds like you're happy.

    Hi Laurie! Congrats on your purchase, too!

    Gmax, welcome! The Personal pages will fit in the A5 binder, but you have to fold down the lower-left corner. I do it all the time! The mini, I'm not sure. I've never gone as small as the mini! I do love the fact that the Pocket pages fit in the Personal.

  8. Oh, Sara, by the way, you are correct that the 3-3/4 by 6-3/4 Circa is the same page size as the Personal-sized Filofax.

  9. Hi Philofaxy, I'm in the UK doing a project on filofaxs for college and how people seem to be coming back to them or using them alongside electronic media, is it possible to email you some questions about the role it plays in your life.

  10. I recently purchased my 2009 refills - monthly format, lined week on two pages and daily, all personal sized. I use both the monthly and weekly formats on a daily basis and sometimes the daily format depending on what I have going on that particular day - mostly if I have a lot of scheduled appointments or if the weekly space is too small for all of the to-dos that day (I don't keep a running list of to-dos, but rather put them in the specific day that they need to get done).

    I also have coming my 2009 refills for my mini filo - I use this one to carry in small bags or when I don't need to carry my life with me. My personal size is the one that has everything I need and the one I use on a daily basis but the mini I just write down appointments so that I know what I'm doing without having to lug around my tons of lists. I don't really move papers from one to the other, although I can tell you that the mini papers do fit in the personal size binders. You may have to fold a corner, but otherwise they do fit.

    I have also ordered the 2009 week on one page with notes section to see if that would lighten my load - I end up moving many to-dos from one day to the other, making things more complicated than they need to be. So I'm going to try this to see if it helps.

    I was at the Container Store this weekend - they carry a small variety of Filos. The pocket size caught my eye and for a brief moment I contemplated buying one thinking that this would eliminate the back and forth use between the personal and the mini. But I had to talk myself out of it since most of what I own is for the personal size and especially since I just ordered the 2009 refills in the personal size. Plus, I spend way too much money on Filos to begin with. I did look at what was on eBay and didn't find any particular bargains. I might reconsider the pocket size for 2010 though. But if I'm honest, I'll probably end up buying the pocket size before then just to make sure I'm not missing a good thing. ;)

  11. You can put the Personal size pages into an A5 binder, you just trim off the bottom corner. I do this for maps that don't come in A5 size.

  12. I am going through a similar experience as kanalt: Every year when I just have bought my new refills (day per page, personal size), I think about a change. From Personal to A5 (but I thinks it’s too heavy for me, and looks a little bit too serious), from day per page to week on two pages (more clarly arranged and better for a prospective view, but on busy days not enough space to write). However, I stay loyal to my day per page Personal size (since 1997), but it is a seducement every year.

  13. Laurie's purple Finsbury does look lovely. It calls to me to give that lovely purple binder a home. I'd love to get one, but I'm wondering how portable it is. Can you get it in your purse, or do you leave it home, or carry it separately, or instead of a purse, or in a briefcase? It seems so bulky that I'd be tempted to leave it at home -- maybe sitting on a desk or on a bookshelf. How do you actually use the A5 Filo's? I've admired them many times but shied away because they look so big. I always avoided Franklin Covey binders because they seem so overbuilt -- like they're made to last for a hundred years, but I'd want a new one every once in a while so wouldn't want to waste the remaining life. And that's something I wonder about with the Filofaxes. I have a slimline personal and a pocket filofax, but haven't summoned up the courage and the money to get an A5.

  14. Hi gg,

    I use this purse for my A5 Filo:


    The A5 JUST fits into the main compartment, and the rest of my stuff goes into the pockets. This bag holds a surprising amount of stuff, but is very streamlined. When I moved up to A5 from Personal size I thought I would have to carry a huge bag, but I've been very pleased with this bag and its compact size. I carry my A5 with me everywhere, and I travel a lot so I have to have a lot of information with me wherever I go. For me the size of the A5 is well worth the usefulness. I had constant problems with my weekly calendar not being big enough in my Personal size. The A5 solved that issue nicely, and also gives me plenty of space to write on my other pages too.

    I recently ordered the week + notes calendar refill to replace my week to view. I love seeing the days as columns across the page, but there is not nearly enough space to write all of my lists that I use each week. If I write my lists in my tabbed sections, they get neglected when I can't see them all the time--I'm very "out of sight, out of mind." And if I use sticky notes and stick them to my weekly pages, they obscure my daily agenda. These days I have more lists than appointments each week, so hopefully this format will allow me to keep all of my lists in view during the week and see my appointments too.

    I love the flexibility of Filofax: when I have more appointments I can switch back to the column view. If I get really busy I can add daily diary pages. I can change the format mid-year, for one week or several, and back again. Filo freedom!

  15. Has anyone switched from the personal sized to the pocket sized? I'm thinking of making the switch, but I'm not sure it's practical with all the lists I keep, yet sometimes I feel that the personal sized is too big to carry everywhere...

  16. Thanks, Laurie, for that info. Maybe I can manage one of those beautiful purple A5's. I have to admit it would be nice to be able to carry all that info with me every day.

    My husband found a pocket Filo at a garage sale and brought it home for me, and I carried it around in my purse for a while. I wasn't actually trying to use it for lists or appointments, but as a capture device as recommended for GTD, so didn't have quite the experience you're considering. I do think it might be fine for a one page per day agenda and for limited notes. It was hard for me to open and close the rings because everything is so tiny, so it depends on your finger size, too. Also, my pocket filo is actually a wallet -cum-binder, so it's a bit more bulky than I like. But it was nice having reference calendars and paper for notes, etc, all so easy to grab from my purse. Am thinking of getting it out and going back to it.

    You might try getting a similar sized notebook at WalMart or a drugstore or office supply store. Use that for a while and then you would have an idea of how that size page would work for you.

  17. Hmmm, thanks for the info, gg. That's one of the problems I had with the Slimline - the rings were too small. I can deal with paring down my pages and notes (if I have to), but if I can't open the rings, it's no good, although I know that the pocket version has bigger rings than the Slimline.

  18. On Pocket Size Filofaxes:

    I've used pocket size organisers before. I've tried using it as my "hub" but the attempt failed. Its simply too small for my needs.

    I once thought that the perfect pocket size Filofax would be the one that can hold the most pages. But then, having too much pages doesn't make it "pocketable". If I wanted to bring it with me everywhere, I either needed to put it in a bag or constantly hold it. Doing that eliminates its advantage over the personal size, in my opinion.

    I also realized that the reason the pocket size did not work for me is because I was forcing it to be my hub, projects planner and mobile capture/reference device at the same time.

    If all you need for any given day is a list of frequently used contacts, calendar reminders and notes then the you can migrate from personal to pocket size without a problem. You will gain the advantage of having a more portable system and being able to use your Filo with custom-printed 3 x 5 notepads or index cards as refills.

    On A5 vs. Personal Size:

    I use the personal size most of the time. But lately, I've been tempted to switch to an A5 for two reasons: (1)Laurie's posts convinced me that an A5 can be as portable as a personal size and (2)one of the local office supply shops in my neighborhood is having a sale on A5 Filofax.

    I've seen an A5 Finsbury for $69, an A5 Classic for around $75 and an A5 Topaz for $99.

    So now, parts of my brain are having a session conducting hearings on the advantages/disadvantages of "to buy or not to buy".

    I've never used an A5 Filofax before. And I'm afraid it might end up like some of my old 3-ring or 7-ring binders - kept in a cabinet, seldomly used.

  19. I use an A5 Classic, but I'm also not constantly on the go. I like that it lays flat and the pages are big enough for me to write as large as I please, plenty of room for notes or lists or mad scribblings or what have you. Having it open all day is key to using it and keeping what I'm trying to get done that day front and center.

    On a two-week business trip recently (book tour) I didn't take the A5, I just dumped all the pertinent info for calendar, etc. into my iPhone. I have carted my A5 around my home town when I need to, but I often take just a page or two out if needed to take into the store, etc.

    Just my take, good luck with your decision.

  20. @Laurie and tur_tur -- Re the vertical layout -- there's a template on the DIY Planner site


    It's a two-page spread with the vertical view of the week and spaces for notes and lists. I'm trying to modify it to print as a Classic size, as it's set up for A5 and doesn't take up the entire sheet of letter paper as is. But it's close.
    I guess the trade-off is that the space for appointments is just about one third of the height of the two pages. I'd like to try it for a week or so to see how it would fit with my fairly light needs -- no more than two or three appointments per day, if that.

    If you're in the UK then it might be perfect for you. It's editable -- Open office spreadsheet.

  21. I'm using my A5 filofax the same way as Jeff Abbott. only instead i'm not using an iphone, but i'm using y Lg Viewty.

  22. I have the Personal size I use for planning, with my yearly, monthly, weekly and daily goals all noted and updated regularly. I use a wallet/planner that I got from Lizell to note events that come up or keep track of any interesting book titles, DVDs, quotes, etc. Then on a regular basis I transfer that info into the appropriate spot.

    I also have printed plastic Japanese folders that I keep for each project as well as one that I throw interesting articles, coupons, pictures, etc. I try to weed through that one regularly, either acting on stuff, filing items away or pasting into my commonplace book. It's a modified element of GTD and I find it works well for me IF (and it's a big IF) I keep on top of the system. At least twice a year I fall off the wagon and have to start all over again.

    How is everyone else doing?

  23. Hi, Vidya-- I'd like to know more about your commonplace book. What kind of journal or notebook do you use for it? I've read about them before, but haven't set one up yet.

  24. Hi everyone!
    I've been a lurker for so long, that I think it's time I stepped up :)

    I am very new to Filofax (since may this year), but have grown quite fond of it.
    At first, I wasn't sure which size to get. I wanted it small, yet big enough to write all stuff I could think of. And I wanted it to be as portable as possible, since I'm not keen on large bags. Which is why I opted for the Pocket size.
    I must confess that when I was taking the measurements shown on the web for the binder, I got them confused and thought that was the size of the pages. So when my Pocket finally arrived, I found the sheets rather small (I have the week per two pages). I thought about exchanging it for another size, but realised that since the pocket binder size was indeed perfect for me, the personal and the A5 would be much too big.
    I have in the time being, grown really fond of my Pocket Finsbury. I have gotten used to the page sizes, and the rings aren't too small for me. It's even starting to lay flatter than before due to its constant use.
    The only thing I'd like on it? a second pen loop, but I'm already thinking on making one myself :)

    @ laurie: Really great choice on the purple Finsbury! Mine's a purple Finsbury, too, and it looks fabulous!!

    Does anybody else prefer the Pocket?

  25. " gg said...
    Hi, Vidya-- I'd like to know more about your commonplace book. What kind of journal or notebook do you use for it? I've read about them before, but haven't set one up yet.

    August 26, 2008 12:02 AM"

    I use an unlined journal a friend gave me. I either paste things in or copy good quotes. Every few months I like to flip through it and get inspiration.

  26. I just love my Filo. Right now I would give almost anything if I could buy a new personal size organizer http://tinyurl.com/5n8xaw
    Alas, there is no way to I could justify a $ 120 purchaase when my good ole organizer is just fine.

    I have 300 personal size blank filofax paper just waiting to be used. I am curious to know if any of you has made your own filofax template? I have browsed www.diyplanner.com but found nothing that would plase me at the moment.

    from Finland, Europe

  27. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  28. Sorry about double posting. Nan, could you delete it?

    I have a personal size hole punch. Can I use the same hole punch if I switch to A5 size?

    from Finland, Europe

  29. Hi Sirpa - I deleted the duplicate post.

    As for the hole punch, no, the Personal hole punch won't work for A5 pages. You have to buy the A5 punch. >(

    I just ordered my first A5 metal punch! It's the beginning of a whole (hole?) new era in my A5 life. I'll blog about this soon.

  30. "I just love my Filo. Right now I would give almost anything if I could buy a new personal size organizer http://tinyurl.com/5n8xaw
    Alas, there is no way to I could justify a $ 120 purchaase when my good ole organizer is just fine.

    I have 300 personal size blank filofax paper just waiting to be used. I am curious to know if any of you has made your own filofax template? I have browsed www.diyplanner.com but found nothing that would plase me at the moment.

    from Finland, Europe"

    I'm playing with building my own template. I've been wanting a day on two pages with one side being my agenda and to do list and the other page being tracking various items such as exercise, meals, expenses, progress on goals. I've been having a heck of a time finding bulk personal size paper, what Filofax has on offer is really expensive.

  31. I sometimes substitute Filofax paper with those of generic personal size notebooks.

    I can usually find them in the office supply section of most dollar stores. They're mostly made in China. The paper quality is not great but good enough for daily use... Well, they're good enough for me.

    The paper fits perfectly with personal size Filofax organisers. I make my own pages using a one-hole punch and a pair of scissors. Sometimes I just tear the paper by hand, draw some guide dots and punch the paper.

    The process may seem time consuming but I find that I can make a lot of pages in only a few minutes. I think I'm able to produce 20-25 pages within 3 mins.

  32. Joffreyca, i use those too. I use them as my groceryshoppinglist (i hope i wrote it well) and as an extra notes page in my A5 Filofax. I use tape to stick it on the page. But then i can't move the list anymore. That's why i want a hole punch. it is funny to read how you make holes in your paper. It's a lot of work! LOL

  33. About the personal and pocket-size forms, that's one reason I use classic -- it's so reasonably-priced to buy a ream of letter paper and take it to the print shop for one cut. I still have my personal and pocket Filofaxes, but I don't use them very much, and I buy forms for them wherever I can find them, like at office supply stores and WalMart. I did find a nice set of tabs for the pocket binder at a Japanese supermarket (six pastel tabs for $1.69!), and they had an assortment of forms in that size, so will be going back to pick up some more. At prices like that I may start using the pocket binder a lot more.

    But basically if you want to print your own forms in a smaller size, you really need to get a guillotine and the appropriate hole punch. Which brings the investment up to about $100 additional, here in the US. With a bit more diligence I might be able to use scissors, as Joffreyca does. But my scissor cuts never look good -- my pages would be annoyingly uneven.

    And another issue is that the actual holes on the pocket (and I believe also on the personal) forms are smaller in diameter than on the hole punches that are available here. I tried moving the punches (dies?) from one three-hole punch over to another one, so I could make six holes, and the dies were so crowded I couldn't actually get them to work for pocket size, and for personal they didn't look right and took up too much of the page. Also they leave a bigger margin (between the edge of the paper and the holes) and that takes away a bit more of the writing surface. So it gets complicated.

  34. My purple Finsbury arrived yesterday! I love it! It is a great color of purple, I'm so glad I got it. Now once my new week + notes calendar format arrives I can really get it set up to my liking.

    Included in my new binder were some note pages of various colors, one of which is purple! Purple note pages are not available in A5 size on the Filofax USA website, but I will email them and ask if they will be soon!

  35. Hi everyone,

    I have just been reading through what everyone had written and I wanted to add a few comments. I have made my own filo personal and A5 size pages, mostly using Excel spreadsheets and then printing them out - and it's great now that I have figured out how to print them double sided. I print them on to A4 paper and then using an old filo page the size I want, I mark out the borders on my printed pages and then using my scrapbooking page trimmer I cut them to size. I then line up the old filo page to the new one and then trace the holes and punch them out one by one. It sounds tedious, but I find that I have now got the hang of it and can have new pages ready to go quite quickly. The pages I have made include - week on one page with notes opposite; address page; personal information page; weekly page with goal boxes to tick off; monthly calendar; notes pages... and I am sure there are more. Also To Vidya, do you have sections in your commonplace book? I have 14 and counting. I have recently started (and maintained the use of) a personal pink domino filofax, but am not sure if I want to start carrying my City A5 around instead... will think about it...

  36. I'm ready for a refreshment...as often as I picked up my filo at the beginning and visited this site...as only few times I open it now and visit this site.... And I know I'm doing some things wrong. I had my GTD in place as well and now it's out of place. Not that I'm doing nottin....it's just that I don't discipline myself enough. I made a sticky recently writing: Get GTD Done! That's my comment for today's friday. Cheers.

  37. In response to Silver Elixir, I just have one commonplace book and I write in any quotes that catch my eye. I also put in photos that I like. It's a treat to leaf through it when I'm feeling blue and in need of inspiration.

    I got my 2009 daily pages yesterday! I really like Preference/Sun Graphix's daily pages layout (http://www.pensandgifts.com/cgi/display.cgi?item_num=SunGraphixDP646W). I also bought the project pages to make my project tracking look a bit neater.

    How is everyone else doing?

  38. Happy New Year to everyone! Oh, it's not that time yet, but am in that mood because I got a 2009 planner the other day.

    I had already completed my template for 2009 with birthdays and holidays incorporated into the pages, and then the thought of printing them out and getting them bound just seemed too much. So with the new planners out at Borders, I got a Gallery Leather (tho this was pleather) pink planner, two page per week, 5x8 planner. I liked the nice bright pink color. There were also purple ones, but the pink appealed to me.

    I like that it has eight monthly mini-calendars along the bottom of the pages.

    So all my work on my template was for nought! Oh well, I've started some lists in the new planner, hoping to integrate it into my life already. Maybe I'll keep this one all year and won't end up buying two or three more as my moods change. It's still a long time til the new year -- plenty of time to get several more by then.

    I really like the Filofax week to a page with the facing page for notes, but an A5/Classic binder is too bulky to carry around and the personal pages don't give me enough space, and I like the week to a page view, not the one page per day views. Otherwise I'd get Filofax pages, as I really like the faint print and the uncluttered look.


  39. This week I received my week + notes pages for 2009 and also for the remainder of 2008 so I can start using the format right away. Actually they were sold out of the week + notes for 2008 so I bought the week per page, and inserted a note page between each week. So my week/ notes pages reverse sides every week, but only until the end of this year.

    I am really hoping this format will solve my issues of needing space for lists each week. To be honest, for the last few weeks I have been using my full-size Uncalendar because there is so much room each week for lists. Now that my week + notes pages are here, I hope they will satisfy my listing needs.

  40. I too ordered and received both 2008 and 2009 weekly + notes refills (though, like Laurie had to get the week per page and regular notes pages for the remainder of 2008). I was really hoping that the layout would be better for me (less writing), but I could tell as soon as I set it up that it would not cut it for me. I need to see everything in it's own day (I write down all appointments plus various things that need to be done on specific days). But I set up a household filo using the weekly + notes and while I have yet to use it, it's all set to go. I'm trying to get my husband to use it too so that we're aware of each other's schedule (he rarely looks at calendars) and to keep track of household projects that we'd like to do. We'll see how that goes...

  41. Anyone else concerned that we haven't heard from Inky since August? I miss her and wish she'd come back and blog for us some more!!!

  42. I have a few questions:

    My personal info and incase of emergency page is messed up, where can i get a new one?

    Where do you write your appointments for the next year if you don't have a refill for next year yet?

    Inky??? Where are you? and is everything ok?

    greets Rose

  43. Just wanted to verify this: is Inky and GoNanB (http://flickr.com/people/gonanb/) the same person?

    Wow. I didn't know GoNanB works for O'Reilly Media.

    I love O'Reilly books.

    Most of the books I request for work are published by O'Reilly.

    Hope you're doing well, Inky.

  44. Nevermind. I just confirmed that Inky and GoNanB are one and the same.

    I didn't notice this at first but GoNanB's email uses the name "nanbarber" and Inky keeps another blog named "nanbarber.blogspot.com".

  45. Yes, I also agree with Chrystine:

    Inky/Nan: WE MISS YOU!!! Post back soon, please.


  46. Um, I'm thinking of moving from my Filofax to Entourage. I haven't tried an electronic solution in a long time, but I realized:
    --my days tend to be very similar in how I use the blocks of time (I work alone, self-employed) and I got tired of re-entering said blocks of time in my Filo
    --I really like having an electronic alert to move me to the next phase of my day/remind me of what I need to do now (and yes, I could feel like Pavlov's dogs, but it does tend to keep me on track)
    --I can carry my calendar more easily with me on my phone than lugging my Filo around.
    --the MyDay feature is kind of like having a Filo page up on your screen
    I've been doing this for a week, and it's working okay, but it's sort of weird not to be using a paper system. I don't know if I'll stick with it or not. If I do I will probably keep my Filo as a notebook.

  47. Hi Rose,

    The diary inserts have a new Personal Information page each year, so when you get your refill you'll get a new page.

    Inky, I hope you are okay!