17 May 2015

Reader Under The Spotlight - Kristy

Today I would like to introduce you to Kristy

My name is Kristy Beer (yes... like the drink) and I live in hot, sunny, humid Townsville, a city in North Queensland,  Australia.  I am a single mother of a little boy Harrison,  who is nearly 2. 

I have always been the typical stationery and notepad geek for as long as I can remember. As a child I had tons of diaries,  journals, notebooks,  pens, pencils... on Saturdays I learned artistic roller ​skating, which always left a one hour gap in between the free skating session, and my lesson - during which I used to sneak over to the shopping center and spend my pocket money at the newsagent, buying yet another notebook or journal! 

I have had several serious medical issues over my adult years which lead me to seek a diary to ensure I not only kept all appointments with doctors and specialists, but to note down days of anything that I may need to tell them for reference.

For years I would purchase a Debden A5 diary and cart it with me everywhere, and they normally fell apart by the November/December mark​. Then one day my hairdresser pulled out a Filofax from her handbag to schedule my next appointment. It was a multicolor striped canvass personal,  well worn and very stuffed. I knew as soon as I saw it I had to have one... and the rest is history!

​I have answered the questions below as instructed and included a photo of myself - a rare one that I actually don't mind. :-)​

1. When did you buy your first organiser and what was it?

My first organiser was a personal Botanic in Pink -  after seeing my friend's personal canvas that was multi-coloured stripes (I still do not know the name of that one and am STILL searching for one myself, somebody must have one hidden somewhere), I decided to go the canvas - which worked well as it was the only style I could afford at the time!

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

None, but I am OBSESSED with the idea of one day owning a Gillio Medium Compagna - I LOVE the look of the leather, the way they patina with age and love, and the long back pocket - brilliant. That to me is a real "grown up" planner, and I will own one one day. :-) I intend to use it until it literally falls to pieces.

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

Maldens are my all time favourite. I LOVE the feel, the floppiness, the fact that they can be stuffed outside the rings, their pockets, the way they look "well loved" from the moment you receive them, even when they are brand new.

I love "workhorse" planners, those you can tell are carted everywhere, contain entire lives of the people that own them, and the Malden's just scream that to me.  I have both a black pocket (my all time favourite) and a personal purple which is my current everything planner.  I wish I could downsize down to the pocket but at the moment with all the *stuff* going on in my life, I have to carry a personal. Now to find a black personal Malden - ohhhh, dream DREAM come true!

4. How many Filofax or other brands of organisers do you own?

I own three Maldens - a black pocket, purple pocket and purple personal. I don't use more than one planner at a time (I managed to confuse myself so everything has to go into one) so the purple will be sold soon to another loving home.

I also have a personal raspberry Finsbury which was my everyday planner for about 3 years non-stop, before I discovered Philofaxy and the world of Filofaxes, from decorating to washi, tabs and personalised dashboards, and everything in between.

I still have that one and it's well loved. I toy with the idea of moving back into her for a while but the love I have for my Maldens is just too great. I also have a pocket Navy Finsbury which I purchased second hand but was not told about the poor condition of the rings (they are rusted and gross) so I am not sure what I am going to do with that one yet....

5. What is the oldest organiser in your collection?

My raspberry Finsbury. She's served me well, I can't let her go.

6. What do you use your organisers for?

Carrying my entire life. I am very forgetful and easily stressed - I need my planner to keep track of EVERYTHING from appointments, play dates, bills due, accounts to be paid, doctors appointments, everything. The main section is my Week to Opening Piaric inserts, which have all things I need to remember and when.  I have a section for my personal goals and dreams (including a bucket list and a yearly letter to myself reminding me to be strong no matter what life throws at me).

I have a section for my son to keep track of his milestones, books to buy him, what I need to remind myself as a parent is important, and any notes that I may need to remember should he fall sick and I need to take him to the doctors, and lists for birthdays (presents, party planning requirements, etc).

I have passwords ('cause I never remember those either), accounts in a section, I have a lists section that lists - well, everything, from things I need to buy for the house, things I need to sell on eBay, things I need for my next trip away, things to buy my son, things that I need (ok, want), etc. I have a section for contacts in case I lose my phone, as the only phone number I can ever remember is my own.

I have a medical section for notes about how I am feeling and what symptoms I had for my endocrinology appointments, and I also use this section for notes about dietary requirements and if my doctor tells me things I should remember such as changes to medication and when to have blood tests.  I also have a section for my therapy appointments so I can note down important things to discuss should something have happened.

I have a section for business cards for places I use weekly/monthly/yearly, and a notepad in the back pocket for my grocery lists so I don't leave it on the kitchen bench like I used to before I utilized my planners!

I have spare bank cards and my own business cards in the front, stamps in the zipper and personal cards from friends for days I need a smile in the back behind the notepad. I have scripts for medication in the front pocket so I never forget them when I go to fill them (instead of what I used to do prior to owning a filofax - get to the chemist and say every curse word under the sun when I remembered the script was still attached to a clip on the fridge at home).

I have a open top pocket full of photos of my son, so I always have him with me even if he's not there.

Finally, on my plastic Today Ruler, I stick a post-it note on it with my daily "To Dos" from washing to picking up a package, things that don't need to be noted in the diary itself, just things I need to be reminded of that day.

At the end of the day the post-it is thrown away, a new one replaced, and anything not done that day is carried over to the next. I leave it open on the bench and I can see everything in a glance. My Malden contains my life, she's with my everywhere I go.

7. How many sections do you have in your organiser and what is each section used for?
  1. Personal - life goals, bucket lists, etc.
  2. My son - goals as a parent to him (note to myself that is), books to buy him, milestones listed, notes for birthday (presents to buy, etc)
  3. Month to opening - so I can see everything in a glance - bills due and birthdays mostly.
  4. Week to opening - all appointments and bills due go in here. Also in notes section at top of page, I list bills paid and receipt numbers.
  5. Accounts and Passwords
  6. Contacts - cause if I lost my phone I'd be stuffed.
  7. Lists - lists for anything and everything.
  8. Medical - Specialist notes and journal of anything that happens between appointments to tell them next time, notes taken during appointments
  9. (sub tab in medical) Therapy - journal of events that I need to remember to discuss.
  10. Business cards - for places I use weekly/monthly/yearly for both work and personal reasons.
8. What was the feature about Filofax you like most?

Total and utter customisation - it's your filofax, you make it how you want it for your use. No rules - you do what you want!

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

Side cards on the left ala Holborn personal, pocket at rear aka Malden, and full back width pocket on the personal sizes like the Gillio Compagna, all in the shell of a Malden in Vintage Pink or Black - PLANNER HEAVEN!

10. How do you carry your Filofax?

TERRIBLY!! It is thrown into whatever bag I am carrying at the time, from my normal handbag to the baby bag - but I do admit that in the baby bag it does have it's own "section" away from baby related things like drink bottles - learnt that lesson the hard way.

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

Malden.  I'm soooo biased. I already own one but I must say if I could get my hands on a Black personal - ohhhhh

12. What is the most you have ever spent on a Filofax or other brand of organiser? Which model?

My personal Malden actually - $160 as I was having trouble finding one I liked but then this one popped up on the Filofaxes for Sale and it was in Australia (sooooooo difficult to find the planner you want that the buyer is willing to ship overseas, but I do understand why sellers hesitate) and it was the "texture" I was looking for. Maldens are all so different, and I knew what I wanted - so when it popped up I didn't hesitate! The way she works for me though, she's paid for herself over and over again!

13. What's your favourite Filofax tip or hack?

The post-it note on the Today ruler was a good one, but I would have to say using laminated perspex for several things like page lifters (to stop the back pages from curling around the rings when closed) and using them to stick post-it's on for on the go and also adding additional pen loops so you can carry not only post-its without adding bulk but TWO pens! And if those pens are multi-barrell pens - well, no pencil case in the handbag carrying for me!!

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

The range of discussion, the ideas, and the interesting way of finding out how people bond over something like planners - bet when planners where invented, they did not imagine the cult following they have today!

15. And what do you not like about Philofaxy?

Um...???? Not sure. I am yet to try to print out my own inserts.  I bet I fail at that - so I would then say printing the inserts!

16. What was the last music track you downloaded or bought?

Please don't laugh - but "Frozen". I would say it was for my son but...that would be a lie.

17. Have you ever attended a Philofaxy meet-up? if not do you intend to one day?

I would love to but being in North Queensland, Australia - makes it VERY hard.  Then again, it's one that should go on the bucket list *reaches for her trusty Malden*

18. What was the last movie you watched?

I wouldn't have a clue!! I watch TV Shows from DVD - but a guess would be Devil Wears Prada? I love that movie - can watch it over and over again!

19. What was the last book you read?

Tully by Paulina Simmons - again.  I have been reading that book every year since I was in Grade 10 which was back in 1997.  I love it.  I even named my dog "Tully" after it.  I never tire of it.

Thank you Kristy for your wonderfully detailed responses. 

As you know we are always looking for new people to appear in our 'Reader Under Spotlight feature, you don't have to be 'well known' or a long term user to be considered to appear in this 'spot'. 

 So please contact Steve philofaxy at gmail dot com today. 

Thank you.


  1. What a great read - I'm also a North Queenslander!

  2. Hello Kristy - great to learn more about you! Plus, Queenslander :) Did you know that Beth is selling a black personal Malden at Philofaxy's Adspot: http://philofaxy.blogspot.com/p/adspot.html
    ....hope it works out!