26 February 2010

The obituary for Filofax has been recalled

Newspaper editors have this week been apologising for the premature announcements of the death of the Filofax. It seems that the Filofax has been going about it's business quietly and without making a fuss for years. They blamed the lack of TV coverage and the lack of mentions in the weekly celeb magazines for them thinking it had died without trace.

Keen followers and users of Filofax have been rejoicing and broadcasting their love for Filofax on Twitter and other social networks this week following the announcements that sales in the leather bound organisers had never been better.

Filofax HQ have even called in expert users to review their up and coming TV ad campaign which reportedly features a user turning the pages of their Filofax and showing the camera the variety of pages available. 'You want a list to remember all the things to take on holiday…. Well their's an insert for that'  Now where have I heard something like that before....

Male Filofax users were slightly concerned that this weeks announcements included the startling statistics that they were in the minority when it came to the demographics of the average Filofax user. They have called for the focus groups to get together to design some more masculine organisers. Ideas have included a fake camouflage cover. Inserts featuring maps showing the locations of CAMRA recommended pubs and bars in central London. They have also called upon Filofax to develop a similar 'beauty Filofax gift box' that will appeal to men. The atomiser pen could of course be used for aftershave, the mirror for shaving and checking for other unwanted facial hair!

All Filofax users have appealed to Filofax UK to not get carried away with this newly found popularity, they don't want the brand to be cheapened, or for senseless gadgets to be included such as electronic alarm reminders, the clip in calculator is going far enough thank you.

Filofax has called for publicist Max Clifford to sell their story of their hidden years in hiding at the bottom of desk drawers and called for Filofax UK to ensure there was a plentiful supply of diaries and inserts available for all his old friends that have been emerging this week.

The family and friends of Filofax are pleased and happy that the Filofax is in fact alive and well.

Note: Written with tongue firmly in cheek! It is Friday after all......

Free For All Friday No. 67

This week I revived my Personal Deco Filofax to use as my "everything except my planner" book. My current (bound-book) planner has a page size and layout that I love, but it has no pages in the back for notes. I have some major things coming up in the next several months (like moving to a foreign country) that I need to prepare for, big time.

I'm thrilled to have a major use for this Filofax, because it's gorgeous and I love it, but until now it was underused. Now it will get a real workout! I revamped my tabs, updated my lists, souped-up my goals and am cranking on my move preparation. I wrote about my tabbed sections and how I'm using my Deco a couple of days ago in Tabbed Sections! if you want to read more details.

What's new in your Filofax life these days?

25 February 2010

Retirement (not mine!)

About four years ago, I dashed into a stationery store a few minutes before closing time with a purpose in mind—obtain an A5 Filofax. I had made the decision to use A5 for all my work-related planning and record keeping. I bought a black Finsbury. Not my favorite color or style, but it was all they had, and the rings were nice and big.

I had made a commitment to stop changing systems every few weeks. If I had to change anything, it would only be at six-month intervals. And so I stuck with the A5 for 4 years.

But to be perfectly honest, I never came up with an A5 Filofax system that worked well enough. I ended up writing to-dos in more than one place, sometimes losing them completely. The day-per-page had too much room to write, the month-per-2-pages not enough. I wasn't seeing the information I needed to see when I needed to see it. Even making my own tabs didn't solve these problems.

With an increase in the number of projects I have to juggle at work, the whole system broke down.

My new solution will depend on full-size file folders for to-dos and project info, an online calendar, a basic notebook, and a full-size appointment book. I don't have all of this paraphernalia yet...time for another trip to the stationery store.

But don't worry, I still have 2 other Filofaxes in my life!

We have class!

There's more Filofax love in the news today!

Today's Telegraph has another article about how Filofax sales are on the rise. I love how in this article it says taking out a gorgeous Filofax shows you have class. Yes we do!


Today's Independent has a mention too, at the bottom of Hit And Run ("Filofax Strikes Back"). I love how they refer to the inserts as "OCD-tastic." I think we are all testament to the amount of tweaking one can do with Filofax inserts!


According to Filofax UK on Twitter, there's also a Guardian article today about Filofax, but I couldn't find it online. Did anyone see it?

24 February 2010

Tabbed sections!

I love to hear how everyone uses their tabbed sections, because it gives me ideas on how to better utilize mine. This is a topic I come back to periodically to see how people have updated their systems, and to give everyone the opportunity to share how they use their system.

Right now the tabs in my main Filofax are (starting behind the planner section):

Emergency and Medical

Travel (with maps here)

Albania country-specific info

Goals (my exercise routines go in here too)

Lists (gift lists for the year, websites, to-do lists)

Notes (mostly blank, to have a landing place for jotting things down since my Filo doesn't have a notes pad in the back)

Move (because we will be moving to a different country in a few months, lots of lists in here)

Kids (homeschooling, lesson ideas, goals)



I'm trying to come up with better designations for my reference lists vs my active to-dos, and goals to reference vs ongoing projects. I feel like I need to change my sections somehow but I'm not sure how to designate them. "Reference" vs "Active" maybe? Anyone have any ideas?

What are your tabbed sections?

The Filofax is back

Well according to the Daily Telegraph today here in UK, the Filofax is back...

Have a read....

I hate to tell them... it never went away as far as we are concerned....


23 February 2010

Using my Slimline Filofax as my wallet

I mentioned this purchase a few months ago in a post when I had just bought my Slimline Finsbury. Well since then it's been in use everyday. As there have been a few comments recently about how to use a Filofax as your wallet I thought I would do a post with some pictures.

This first picture shows the inside front, which has six card slots and a further full height slot behind them. I use a Pentel 205 mechanical pencil in this organiser, as the diary section is used for my appointments.

Note how it lays flat... no bluetac!

I'm using a page a day which is more than enough space for the number of appointments I have to keep. I jot things down in here on a regular basis.

I keep track of my car share too, who is driving out of the three of us to work each day.

I use To Do lists and lined paper quite a bit, occasionally slipping either adjacent to my week, so I have the week and the todo list in view at the same time.

I'm not heavy on GTD, but this works fine for me.

At the back I have my contact phone numbers again entered in pencil so that I can make changes to these easily.

The back cover pocket holds my drivers licence, any paper money, a book of postage stamps, and when abroad my passport. Note how the back cover doesn't quite lay flat, it doesn't have the additional weight of all of my cards that sit in the front cover pockets.

The only thing I've not found an answer to yet is loose coins. Any ideas that would compatible with a slimline?

[Update] I've now added the Change Holder for coins, see this post

What else do you keep in your Filofax?

The joy of Filofax is the customization. You choose the binder, and everything that goes into it. Every single thing you put into your Filofax, or not, is your choice. It's glorious.

Here on Philofaxy we talk a lot about calendar insert formats, tabbed sections, etc. But let's talk about what else you keep in your Filofax.

I think Filofax has done a pretty good job of offering accessories to go into the binders, but of course there could always be a larger selection.

In my Filofax(es) I like to have maps of anything relevant (and I wish they would expand their map selection to include more city maps, and PLEASE an updated map of Europe!). I use the Sticky Notes accessory in every Filofax I own, it is so handy to have. I love the stickers, and even better that they are on a page that fits on the rings. I keep stamps in the zip pocket. I use the Business Card holder pages to keep cards in the back of my binder. I also use the clear pockets that fit on the rings to hold ticket stubs and maybe a photo.

Things I don't keep in my Filofax are money and cards. I keep those in my wallet. It would be too fiddly for me to sift through all my papers and random scraps in my Filofax at a checkout. I also don't have a portable hole punch, although I know many people do, and I think it would be very handy.

What do you keep in your Filofax? What DON'T you keep in it? And, what accessories do you wish Filofax would add to their selection?

21 February 2010

Which organiser has what size rings

OK so you want to know what size rings are in which organiser and approximately what the cost is?

I've come up with the answer, a look up chart in a pdf file that has the details on size, model, ring size and the approximate prices in UK, Europe and the US. Filofax.PDF

I will try and update this file every few months, but as you can imagine it takes a while!


Another Filofax added to my collection

My wife Alison was sorting through her late mother's papers yesterday, as part of our pre-move to France sort out. Yesterday, we started tackling the garage. We have lived here for 24 years so you can imagine it is quite a task! I went off to the tip with a car full of rubbish and was feeling pleased with myself but tired by about 4pm. Coffee and biscuit time...

So whilst we were having coffee Alison passed me a Filofax that she had found amongst her mother's papers, all conversation ceased at that point. I opened it and turned the pages. Mary (my late MiL) had used this organiser as her address book and notebook.

It wasn't a very expensive organiser as I recall, it was bought for her in about 1986/1987. So it is a 'Made in England' one, labelled as OC 1/2 1/2 being the ring size, but so far I've not been able to discover which 'model' OC is.

It is a board construction with quite a hard wearing covering, but as you can see from the photos it lays perfectly flat. The cover had been written on, but with a little gentle restoration I managed to remove most of the writing.  You might just be able to faintly see it on the photos. 

The address pages are the old Ref 194 pages from the mid 1980's, I've used these myself, they have Name, Address and Phone, six entries per side.

At the back of the organiser there are a couple of blank ruled pages. These look a lot older than the organiser it self. The are labelled BCM/FILOFAX LONDON FORM 9 in a style I've never seen before. I wouldn't like to put a date on the age of these pages, but I'm guessing they might be late 1940's early 1950's just judging by the typeface used.

There was also a page for postage stamps. Again this looks a similar age to the notepages. Alison believes that these older pages came out of an old Filofax her late father Charles had, or may be bought in his antique shop in Royal Tunbridge Wells.

I love the single letter a-z index they are the 1985 AZ1ACE, I don't think there is a modern equivalent they all appear to be two letters per tab.

I will most probably use this organiser in the same way my late mother in law did, as an address book/telephone numbers list with some note paper in the back and leave it beside the main telephone. We have had a similar book next to the phone for years, but it's time the information was transferred to a more flexible system.

I thought about putting a photograph on the cover to cover up the writing, but on reflection I think that would mask its age and detract from its history.

Through Filofax we have another chapter to our family history.

I will be uploading the pictures on to the Flickr group later this morning.


19 February 2010

Web Finds - 19 Feb 2011

More than a few mentions on the internet this week for Filofax. Some very different stories, take a look for yourself:
  • Marks and Spencer have a great range of men's bags and brief cases to match your Filofax.
  • Webster's Pens in Brighton have an extensive range of Filofax organisers and pens
  • What's the connection between Halfords the car accessories company and Filofax? The same private equity company apparently.
  • Mari, from Norway is another Filofax user that uses her Filofax to keep her life on track.
  • Office Nut have a lovely selection of leather briefcases, that would take loving care of your precious A5 Filofax.
  • And this has to be the best find... Paper versus Electronic - the debate continues... a very balanced article.
Good to see that Filofax is getting more and more mentions on the internet.

Free for All Friday No. 66

My TGIF spirit is a little tempered today by the fact that today marks the end of a vacation week for me. At least I still have a weekend ahead of me!

Some Filofax diary styles give weekend days less space than weekdays. That kind of arrangement is fine when the Filofax is used for business, but for my personal life I like all seven days to get equal space! I like my weekend days to feel just as full as all other days. Having less space to plan and record recreational, family, and church activities makes me feel stunted.

Do you use or ignore the weekend days in your diary? What's your favorite weekly arrangement?

18 February 2010


Hi All
The links have been moved to their own page, which allows us a bit more space to describe what they all are.  Click on Links under the header

If you have a Filofax blog or website that you would like us to add to the list then please get in touch with one of us.


17 February 2010


I'm sure we all have a 'Today' marker in our Filofax organiser. But have you ever wanted to have more than one, or one that looks a little bit different?

Well take look at this one, it's on the site DeviantArt. With thanks to:purply-bunz  I'm also a user of the site.

I'm going to have a go at making something similar for my A5 organiser, may be in a little more subdued colours though!!


16 February 2010

Managing Multiple Filofaxes: What Where?

I know many of us use multiple Filofaxes at once for various purposes. Maybe you use one Filofax for personal use and another one at work. Maybe one is your planner/ diary, another is your household binder, another for specialty (music, hobby, projects, travel etc.). Some people have a Filofax for each of their major projects. Some people have a larger main Filofax and a smaller "satellite." It's the blessing and curse of Filofax: so many options!

I started out, as many of us did, with everything in one Filofax. As I got older, my life got more complicated and soon my personal size Filo was bursting so I had to diversify. I started using an A5 (Finsbury) for things that I didn't need to carry around with me all the time: my Christmas cards list, complete addresses and contacts list, website passwords and the like.

Now I have a designated Filofax for traveling in Scotland (Domino) and another one for blogs (Personal Finsbury). Those are fine because they each have a designated theme, and therefore are self-limiting.

Then things start to get murky.

I have two other personal size Filofaxes that I love (my Buckingham and my Deco) that I want to use somehow, just because I love them. But as many of you know, I'm not using a Filofax as my planner this year (*hangs head in shame*). So now these two Filos have become keepers of random notes.

On one hand, I love having a use for all of my beloved Filofaxes. On the other, I feel scattered with so much information in so many different places.

For those of you currently using multiple Filofaxes, how do you decide what to put where?

15 February 2010

Triple Hat Trick

I thought this was quite a neat idea which I found on the manage-this.com website it's a simple form that you can set yourself three different types of tasks, agenda items, or projects to do in the week.

You can download the forms from the website and print them off. I'm going to try it out in my A5 for a few weeks and see if it works for me.


14 February 2010

Site Update

Hi everyone
I've just discovered a few goodies tucked away on the Twitter site. So we now have a Twitter feed that is picking up any mention of 'Filofax' in any language on Twitter, it loops around all the time so it will always have the last 5 or 6 mentions of the word Filofax in it.

I've also added a new 'Follow Us on Twitter' button, it works just like the old one, it's just a little smaller and neater.

Our list of links if growing all the time. I'm looking in to adding a Links page on the blog, this will appear as a Links tab at the top of the page, but I need to first copy all of the links to a file for safe keeping. Therefore this might not happen until later in the week.


12 February 2010

Free For All Friday No. 65

Thank goodness it is Friday!

Let's have a total free for all Friday... Filofax related of course...


11 February 2010

A Chronology of Filofax

The following document has been mentioned in the comments a couple of times, I tracked down the link to it the other day using the WebArchive site.

From: A Chronology of Filofax, Hall. Kevin, 21 July 2006, URL: http://web.archive.org/web/20070702203228/http://ukcoldwar.simplenet.com/documents/filofax/chronology/ accessed 1 February 2010; All rights acknowledged.

An updated version of the document is now available on this site, see the files section above.


09 February 2010

Format change....

If you have logged in to Facebook recently you are bound to have had one of your 'friends' possibly commenting or complaining about the new layout on Facebook.  With any of these sites you are at the mercy of the site owner.

Imagine the same happening in your Filofax, you open your organiser and your whole Filofax has changed in it's style, a different calendar, the sections have changed their names or have been moved around, addresses at the front, diary in the middle somewhere. You would think it was a nightmare... go back to sleep and wake up again and hope it has all gone back as it was....

Relax as Filofax users we know this can't happen. We are in control of our format, and layout. Isn't that great... The worse that could happen I suppose is that your preferred choice of calendar or particular pages are no longer printed, or they are out of stock.

Which format calendar would you like to see outside of the current range or do you miss? Are there any pages you miss from the past? Tell us in the comments...

If you were wondering, I'm still using the old Facebook layout... retro yeah! 


06 February 2010

Filofax Fashion

I asked the question a few weeks ago about 'what do you carry your Filofax organiser in?' As might be expected most people mentioned a handbag, briefcase or similar.

I have been using my Finsbury slimline personal size organiser for a few months now as my wallet/organiser. So there are times when I'm not carrying a shoulder bag or rucksack. I've not quite got to the stage of the French 'Man-Bag' yet. That will no doubt happen when I move to France!

If I'm not wearing a formal jacket I've found the map pocket on my Berghaus jackets is perfect for carrying my Filofax. It's discreet and not too bulky.

In these days or iThis and iThat, you aren't likely to find garments with pockets specifically labelled as 'Filofax compatible' But that got me thinking, lets compare sizes...

Filofax iDevice Other
20 x 24 cm
19 x 24 cm
hardback book
17 x 24 cm
12 x 19 cm
6 x 11cm
OS Map
14 x 23 cm
12 x 15 cm
6 x 10 cm

The Scott EVest series of jackets have multiple pockets, think of how many organisers you could carry in one of those, yet still have the odd pocket spare for keys and your mobile phone. Look in x-ray view.

So let's not have any excuses for not taking your Filofax with you anywhere... what ever size you use


05 February 2010

Free For All Friday No. 64

Happy Friday!

Let's have a little informal poll.

What do you wish Filofax would come up with? A new size of binder? (Speaking of, where's the slimline A5 we've been asking for??) A new style or color of binder? New inserts or accessories? A different diary/ planner setup? Let's talk about our wants and needs as Filofax users!

Edited to add: Sorry, I completely forgot about joffreyca's request in the last FFAF! So here is another topic this FFAF:

What is the most expensive Filofax you own? Is it worth it? If not, what would have made it better?

(And for anyone who owns the uber-expensive Alligator, is it really the end-all be-all Filofax? Why or why not?

And, let's hear what's new in your Filofax life these days!