Baron Fig Vanguard Infinity Edition

Over the past few months Baron Fig has become my notebook brand of choice. I really like the simplicity of their designs and the quality of the paper suits the majority of my needs. So when I saw photos of the latest Baron Fig Vanguard Infinity Edition I immediately placed an order.

Prior to using the Infinity edition I had experience with the pocket Vanguard notebooks which meant I had a good idea of what to expect. The Infinity edition comes in the medium, or as Baron Fig refer to it, the Flagship size. This works out as slightly smaller than a traditional A5 notebook. It comes with 72 pages making it a thin workbook or composition book format. I have found this thinner notebook style makes it easier to write in due to the lower profile it has when open, and having fewer pages means its ideal for projects or as I recently found out, a travel notebook as it’s not very bulky.

The Infinity edition comes with the much loved dot grid, off white paper that can be found in all other Baron Fig notebooks. Dot grid paper is fast becoming the preferred grid to please the masses, but personally it’s not my first choice. However I will concede that this grid style does make each notebook extremely versatile.

As you can tell I think there is a lot going for this edition, but most of what I have mentioned above can be found on any of the Flagship Vanguard notebooks. The real selling point of this edition is the beautiful design; it’s simply stunning. The deep purple cover has a slight textured feel to it. The complimenting pink accents are beautiful, the spine stitching, the Infinity shapes on the front cover and then the contrasting use of pink on the inside cover all make the notebook pop. This is the sort of notebook I could hoard, its practically perfect for me.

The gorgeous pink stitching and a glimpse of the textured cover

The gorgeous pink stitching and a glimpse of the textured cover

I really like what Baron Fig are doing these days. They may not be pleasing everyone but they are certainly getting people talking. Their range of products is growing rapidly, it feels like there is a new product every week. I am really excited about Baron Fig and what the future holds.

Jeeves and Co Personalised Stationery

In mid February I was contacted by Jeeves and Co asking if I would like to take a look at a few of their products. This was perfect timing as I was in the thick of InCoWriMo and I could instantly put them to good use. Although Jeeves and Co kindly sent me these items for the purpose of this review the thoughts below are entirely my own. On with the review!

First thing I noticed with Jeeves and Co’s products is that I liked the majority of their designs. I actually had trouble trying to make my final choices. I have searched for personalised correspondence cards in the past and the designs can be too traditional or too expensive and I have not been able to find something that really caught me eye. Jeeves and Co’s designs are the perfect solution to this problem.

Lovely packaging from Jeeves and Co.

Lovely packaging from Jeeves and Co.

I finally settled on the Sweet Dreams correspondence cards. This design plays on sweets and chocolates and comes with a few different designs in the pack. I love the style and colours used. The font used for your name is really nice and works well with the overall design.

The different designs in the Sweet Dreams series

The different designs in the Sweet Dreams series

For the writing paper I chose the owl design in the Cosmic Forest series. The design is really pretty and doesn’t impose on the page too much giving me plenty of writing room.

Cosmic Forest writing paper featuring the swooping owl

Cosmic Forest writing paper featuring the swooping owl

Whilst you want a nice design from your correspondence paper the really important thing is how well it can handle pen and ink. I used both of these sets during InCoWriMo and I found the quality of the paper really good. The paper weights are high, 120gsm for the writing paper and 270gsm for the correspondence cards. I had no issues using any of my fountain pens so a big win right there.

I am really impressed with the items I have used from Jeeves and Co. The designs they have available are modern and fun. For less than £15 they are really well priced. Jeeves and Co have made personalised stationery affordable without compromising on the quality.

I would like to thank Jeeves and Co for sending me a sample of their stationery to use.

InCoWriMo - The Aftermath

February has been and gone which means InCoWriMo has come to an end. This has been my first year taking part and it has been enjoyable spending time sending letters, cards and postcards to people.

A note and a small gift

A note and a small gift

I didn't complete the task of sending one letter per day. I managed to send 20 pieces of correspondence this month. There were days I just couldn’t find the time and other days where I wrote multiple letters. I may have not fulfilled the InCoWriMo challenge but by participating I have written 20 letters more than a usual month. Today I will share some highlights and learnings with you from my first InCoWriMo experience.

The planning process

I didn’t really have a plan. I had a small list of people I wanted to send letters to, I checked February birthdays and included them in the challenge. I kept track of who I had sent something too in my Hobonichi Techo using the monthly calendar. I also included the type of correspondence I had sent. This worked really well for me because it was easy to keep on top of and easy to reference.

My InCoWriMo tracking tool

My InCoWriMo tracking tool

What I sent

To add to the fun I decided to make my own cards during this month. I spent a little bit of time thinking about different designs and then sketched them out in a notebook before drawing anything up on the card stock.

Doodles in my notebook

Doodles in my notebook

I referenced Pinterest a lot looking at how to guides and images that I could copy. I actually really enjoyed doing this. I got to play with lots of my stationery and it was a simple creative outlet. Some of my drawings and designs are questionable but others came out better than I expected.

I was pleased with some of my card efforts

I was pleased with some of my card efforts

I got to play with watercolours and drawing pens

I got to play with watercolours and drawing pens

InCoWriMo was also the perfect opportunity for me to practice brush lettering. The recipients names were lettered on envelopes using the Faber-Castell Pitt Artist Pen as this is waterproof and can survive the elements. In most cases I decorated the envelopes with stamps or washi to jazz them up.

Washi tape made the envelopes look that little bit nicer than normal

Washi tape made the envelopes look that little bit nicer than normal

Receiving letters

I received a few letters myself this year. Not too many but it's really nice to get post that isn't a bill or that I wasn’t expecting. I enjoy the surprise and reading something that someone's actually spent time writing, no matter how short therefore I hoped my letters did the same for other people.

I will definitely take part in InCoWriMo again next year, but I won’t just wait until February, I plan on writing letters and creating more cards soon. I've had a lot of fun and I've found another way to use and enjoy my stationery supplies.

My Modest Ink Collection

  A few of my ink bottles

 

A few of my ink bottles

I am a little stumped at the moment with reviews for the site so todays post is slightly different. One of my aims for this year is to finish a whole bottle of ink. With this in mind I thought I would share my modest collection of bottled ink. This exercise is hopefully interesting to you, but should also shed some light on my ink buying habits.

The complete list:

Ink swabs

Ink swabs

Writing out a list of the bottled ink I own highlights some obvious points. I gravitate to a number of ink brands, predominantly Pilot Iroshizuku ink. Once I’ve tried a manufacturer that I like I tend to go through the ink colours and buy several more. I’ve done this again recently with KWZ.

My choice of colours is very limited. I seem to sway to the blue and blue/green shades. This is a little disappointing, its like the school mentality of blue ink has followed me into adult life. I need more colour!

My Noodlers Black ink is the only anomaly in this list. This ink is waterproof and therefore great to address envelops and for sketching. I have been using this ink a lot in recent months as I try to improve my sketching skills. I doubt this will be the ink I’ll finish this year with an impressive 90ml of it, but I should deplete my stock pretty well.

All of the inks in this list are essentially full bottles. I never make it far before being distracted by a new colour which means I have a lot of ink to hand. If I am to finish a full bottle this year it will likely be the Pilot Iroshizuku Shin-Kai even though this is one of the larger bottles. I really enjoy using this ink and usually have it in one or two fountain pens. It’s a year round ink choice for me.