12 July 2015

Reader Under The Spotlight - Dana

Today I would like to introduce you to Dana

Hi, My name is Dana.  I live in Ontario, Canada with my husband, 2 kids and menagerie of pets.  I am an avid knitter and knit wear designer.  I have several planners that I use to organize the various aspects of my life.  As much as I love technology and have all the igadgets, I am primarily a paper planner.  My brain is for having ideas, not storing them, and I find that physically writing information down on paper is the best way for me to let it go and free up that mental space for the next idea.

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

My first organizer was an A4 Daytimer purchased for me by my employer in the mid 1990s.  I was handed a catalogue and told to choose a binder and inserts.

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

I have used Filofax, Daytimer, Dayrunner and Arc by Staples I am considering adding a Van der spek to my wishlist

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

I love my pocket size organizers as my go-to planner and my wallet.  My current favourites are my Pocket Finsburys and Pocket Maldens.  I migrated from an A5 planner earlier this year.  A5 planners can be quite heavy and inconvenient to carry around on a daily basis.  I had been using a pocket Filofax as a wallet for several years anyway and decided that sacrificing the space and size of an A5 would be well worth the convenience I would gain from always having our schedules and important information with me and at a glance.  I was right. I wish I had downsized sooner.  A smaller planner also helps keep me focused on keeping only what is important and forces me to keep the clutter out of my planner.

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

I currently have 7 pocket Filofaxes: 1 brown Chameleon, 1 yellow Finsbury, 1 raspberry Finsbury, 1 ochre Malden, and 1 aqua Malden that I just  purchased on ebay and is on its way home to me. I also have a red pocket Piccadilly and a second brown pocket Chameleon that my kids are using as well as 2 letter size Arc planners and one A5 Arc Planner.

5. What is the oldest organiser in your collection?

The pocket Piccadilly would be the oldest organzier - I purchased it used on Facebook,  but I have owned my pocket Chameleons the longest.  I purchased them about 3 years ago.  I tend to not keep binders I no longer use.

6. What do you use your organisers for?

I have one pocket Chameleon that is brand new, still in the box, while my pocket Finsburys and Maldens are in my 'active rotation'.  I use a pocket Filofax as a wallet/planner combo.  My set up is consistent, but I like to switch out the binders.  My A5 Arc is my stay at home planner that houses everything I do not need to take with me on a daily basis and that other members of my family may need to reference.  One of my letter size Arc binders is our Financial binder and the other is where I organize my knitwear design work.

7. How many sections do you have in your organiser and what is each section used for?

My main planner (my pocket Filofax) has 5 sections: 'To-do' which is a brain dump of ideas and tasks that I jot down as they occur to me and re-distribute to a specific date or list when I review my plan, 'Yearly' which is a year at a glance, 'weekly' which is a week on 2 pages, 'tracking' where I keep a weekly list of things that are pending or that I am waiting for and 'Index' which is an indexed section of lists and notes that I refer to most often

8. What was the feature about Filofax you like most?

I love the 19mm rings in the pocket size.  I have not found a pocket size binder with larger rings.

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

It would be pocket size, it would have an all leather interior and exterior like the Chamelon, it would have rings bigger than 19mm, it would have a partially elasticized pen loop, zipped pocket and double back pocket for cash.  Basically, it would be the Chameleon with larger rings and softer leather like the Malden.

10. How do you carry your Filofax?

I throw it in whichever bag I am carrying.  The benefit of using a pocket size is that it fits in every bag I own.

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

I have been looking at the pocket size Filofax Flex and considering purchasing it to make a Filoflexidori.

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

I recently paid $112CAD for my pocket aqua Malden

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

I like to write recurring tasks and appointments on a post-it tab and stick it on the day it is due.  Then when I have completed the task or event I move it to the next scheduled date.  This saves me from writing things over and over in my planner.  Also, I have learned that pretty much anything can be shrunk to pocket size, printed, punched and put in my Filofax.

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

Webfinds!  I look forward to Saturday mornings so I can read the weekly roundup.

15. And what do you not like about Philofaxy?

There is nothing I do not like.

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

 'Honey I'm Good' by Andy Grammer

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

I have never been to a Philofaxy meet up.  There is actually going to be one in my town this summer, but I am not available that day.  I would love to attend one someday.

18. What was the last movie you watched?

'The Best of Me'

19. What was the last book you read?

'The Girl on The Train' by Paula Hawkins

Thank you Dana.

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. Hi Dana, I'm a Filofaxing knitter too. Are your patterns on Ravelry?

    1. Hi Dee! Many of them are :) my Rav name is knitalot924

  2. I'm always fascinated by the Pocket users and setups. It's nice that you've found your sweet spot. I agree that larger rings would be nice. I feel like the Coach Pocket I had at one point seemed like it might have been 20 or 22mm, but I don't have it any more to confirm. One of my regrets...

    Thanks for sharing.

  3. You said: "My brain is for having ideas, not storing them, and I find that physically writing information down on paper is the best way for me to let it go and free up that mental space for the next idea" This is how I function, too. If I don't write it down, it swims in my head.

    Thanks for sharing!