Monday 22 September 2014

Pen Is Envy

A little thank-you note I made earlier (Muji fineliner on paper)

I’m pretty sure I’m not alone in my stationery lovin’ tendencies. As the title's cheeky nod to Margaret Atwood's The Handmaid's Tale indicates, I certainly wasn’t the first to note the power and potential of the humble pen - it is mightier than the sword, after all - but as well as the deeper meaning to be garnered from this kinda adage, there’s an indisputable and indefinable pleasure that comes from endearing ephemera. Don’t tell me those Back-to-School/Uni/Work stationery purchases haven’t ever made you a little bit more excited about going back.   

Beyond its utilitarian function, stationery, in its tangible loveliness and often aesthetic appeal, serves as an instant and above all accessible pick-me-up. While the ‘notes’ function on your smartphone can surely save your ass every now and then, physically writing it down (and adding some playful doodles) somehow feels more satisfying. Stationery facilitates creativity, keeps it real and - in the case of my recent purchases (see pics) - looks very handsome indeed. 
You’ll rarely, namely never, catch me without my mini black Moleskine diary and 0.5mm Muji pen. It’s been that way for years, and will stay that way for years to come. Being a serial list writer (I’m a lists about lists gal), daily doodler and non-stop notetaker, these two trusty tools play a requisite role in my funny little existence; it’s no exaggeration to say that I’d be a bit lost without them. And as clever as they might be, we can’t always rely on our nifty digital devices - needless to say my pen and paper pals have never failed me on battery level/frozen at a crucial moment. See Ikea’s latest spot-on ad for a well deserved big up to the unassuming, indispensable Bookbook™.  

Putting pen to paper is cathartic, personal and, nowadays, almost novel. There’s a real sense of personal gratification, too, that comes from surprising loved ones with a spot of handmade snail mail; there’s a lovely appreciation that's returned when receiving a piece of careful craft, your distinguishing handwritten font. Not even Helvetica tops that.

Here's a list of some of my personal go-tos for sweet stationery supplies (if you're curious):

> Hello Paper
> Muji
> mt - masking tape (the queens of washi tape)
Present & Correct (longtime ❤)
> Paper Poetry
> R.S.V.P

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