Field notes

Travel Kit: Edinburgh

IMG_1995.jpg

I am heading off to Edinburgh for a long weekend of relaxation, whiskey drinking, eating lots of tasty food and soaking up the sights of this city. Part of any trip gets me thinking about what stationery items I want to take...and then trying to take only what I need, a task I am always awful at. In this post I will share my stationery travel kit for this trip.

Travelers Notebook + inserts.

I will be taking my trusty black TN with my weekly refill + memo insert.

IMG_1981.jpg

I have also thrown in a mishmash Travelers notebook refill which is an extended journaling notebook for those times I want to be creative or have more to say.

IMG_1983.jpg

I have a Baum Kuchen + Superior Labor pouch which hold some stickers, washi tape, postage stamps and other bits and bobs that all help me with my journaling.

IMG_1985.jpg

Nock Co Sinclair + Field Notes.

My Nock Co Sinclair has become a staple carry. In here I have the Haxley sketchbook where I have been playing around and experimenting with my doodles. The small size of this sketchbook somehow frees my mind and I am less concerned with trying to get things right. The additional pages are also good.

IMG_1980.jpg

I also have a East coast Coastal Field Notes for general note taking. I have some itinerary plans included in here for the trip.

Moleskine Watercolour Sketchbook + watercolour palette.

I want to try and draw while I am in Edinburgh. I am taking my relatively new and untouched A5 Moleskine Watercolour Sketchbook. To go with this I will be using my new(ish) watercolour Winsor and Newton palette. I have a Pentel waterbrush which will more than likely be my main paintbrush due to its convenience. I want the focus to be on just painting and not have any obstacles in my way.

IMG_1987.jpg

Field Notes Signature Ruled Notebook.

This has been my journal lately. The paper quality in this notebook is better than the standard Field Notes which means I can use lots of different writing tools. The slightly larger size, different binding and additional pages makes it a really convenient notebook.

Writing Tools.

This felt like one area where I could limit what I was taking with me on this trip and carry only the essentials. I have the Baron Fig Key Squire, a Zebra Sarassa Clip in grey-blue and 2 pencils that always sit in my Sinclair, so nothing changes here.

IMG_1991.jpg

On top of this I will have the Caran d’Ache mechanical pencil and the Worther Shorty which will be useful for sketching. I will also have my Lamy AL Star and a couple of Faber-Castell Pitt Artist pens for the inking.

I will also take with me my Lamy LX fountain pen inked up with Sailor Blue Black because I love this pairing and enjoy writing with it.

Other Tools.

The final things I will be bringing with me is the Penco big clip which is always handy for holding open notebooks. I will also have a couple of smaller Tools to Liveby clips for my Field Notes. I will be bringing an eraser, the Carta Pura which I really enjoy using and I find doesn’t leave a lot of residue.

IMG_1993.jpg

I will be taking a standard sharpener with me. I don’t have anything better at the moment but will need to have something with me for obvious reasons.

I will have my Sudio Neat Glif for my iPhone in case I need to prop up my phone for reference doodling.

These extras will all be thrown in my Hightide Pen Roll. And then all of these things will be carried in my new Baron Fig backpack. The compartments, pockets and open fully system make this a really interesting travel item kit. I think this could work really well, but time and testing will tell.

IMG_1997.jpg

Overall Thoughts.

This doesn’t look minimal in any way, this is still a lot of things to bring on a short trip but I am a stationery addict and this is me being restrained. I love to have things with me and not fall short. I like to record things and draw at times so I need lots of different tools to do this.

Nock Co Sinclair Review

IMG_1601.jpg

The Nock Co Sinclair has been on my shopping list since its launch. I was attracted to the design instantly and finally decided to treat myself before Christmas picking one up from Pocket Notebooks.

Exterior of the Sinclair with a very useful double zip. 

Exterior of the Sinclair with a very useful double zip. 

The Sinclair is a double zip case with space for three pens or shorter pencils, a few pocket notebooks and a small side pocket for loose papers. The double zip is really sturdy and never catches. It goes halfway down the pen case which means you can easily see and get to everything inside.

I opted for the coffee and amethyst colour way which is beautiful. The coffee coloured exterior is a really nice dark brown which doesn’t show up any scuffs or dirt. The amethyst interior adds a lovely pop of colour and makes it easy to see everything you have inside. The combination of colours works well together.

The empty Sinclair 

The empty Sinclair 

My set-up.

I have two pens, the Baron Fig Key Squire and the Zebra Sarasa Clip, and two short pencils sitting in one slot together. The pen slots are a good width giving you plenty of space and protection to the contents inside. In the side pocket I have the Field Notes annual calendar that came with the Resolution edition. I find it really useful having this with me and it sits perfectly in this pocket. Sitting in the main section of the pen case I am currently carrying one Resolution edition Field Notes which is simply a to-do list and a Shenandoah Field Notes which is for general notes.

My filled Sinclair case. I can squeeze in another notebook too. 

My filled Sinclair case. I can squeeze in another notebook too. 

One big reason I really like this pen case is that it holds everything I need to carry around with me. It’s the one thing that has made me use the Nock Co Sinclair everyday and why I haven’t been using my pocket notebook leather covers. The pens I need and use regularly are always with me and my notebooks now.

Overall thoughts.

This is by far my favourite Nock Co pen case that I own, and I have several. I love the colour way and durability of Nock Co products and having everything I need for note taking in one place is handy, its that simple.

Field Notes Resolution Edition Review

IMG_1434.jpg

I haven't reviewed a Field Notes release on the blog for some time. Actually this is the first Field Notes release I have bought since Lunacy in Fall 2016. Between Lunacy and Resolution I didn't get the pull to buy any of Field Notes releases in the same way I had before. Resolution is the first release that feels like Field Notes, something practical that should be used.

Edition specifics.

Resolutions purpose.

Not only is this a well named and well timed release (you'd think they planned this), but the Resolution edition is perhaps Field Notes most practical edition for some time. There are no major flourishes with this release, it's simply a notebook the list maker / organiser / planner and for that I love it.

The elements

There are three different colours, red, white and blue. Two of the notebooks, the red and blue, are your bullet point/list notebooks. These are similar in concept to Word Notebooks with pages full of bullet points.

IMG_1436.jpg

Inside you have two different paper colours alternating by line, one is a Frost White and the other Winter Sky Gray.

Internal colour cover stock

Internal colour cover stock

I really like this line altering, its makes my lists easier to read and nicer to look at. This does however result in some variation in how the ink performs. Fountain pens respond differently depending on the line, the Winter Sky Gray seems to make the ink feather a lot more. When using a black drawing pen the ink almost looks dull and like a dark grey colour. As you would guess, there are less concerns when using pencils, both colours are fine with graphite.

A pen test showing ink on both of the page colours

A pen test showing ink on both of the page colours

The white notebook of this three pack, is the undated planner. This gives you a week per page with enough space to jot down brief notes on your week, or for appointment planning. This notebook has the same internal colour stock however the majority of your written space is the Winter Sky Gray. The one gripe I have is that Saturday and Sunday are given a tiny amount of space with the assumption that these days aren’t as important. So if you’re a weekend worker, or someone who does a lot on weekends you’re going to run out of room.

IMG_1440.jpg

I really like the thick matte finish covers of this release. The blue is my favourite, the red cover with blue copy is a strange colour combination. The white with red copy reminds me of one of the Day Game notebooks, which was my first experience with Field Notes.

Resolutions little extras.

There is a nod to the Field Nuts in this release with Staple Day printed in the centre pages. I guess when printing 35,000 packs Field Notes can afford to add in touches such as this.

IMG_1445.jpg

The front cover also includes a small move away from the traditional Field Notes front cover. I presume for archival purposes this edition includes a From and To area where you can include the dates for each notebook. The matte finish cover means you can write easily on the cover stock with almost any pen or pencil, mine is actually filled in with pencil.

I love this colour combination. 

I love this colour combination. 

You also get a very handy little annual calendar included in each three pack. This is the size of a Field Notes and made from thick stock making it durable for the year. I keep one with me and it has come in very useful on numerous occasions.

IMG_1437.jpg

My practical applications.

This edition is perfect for me. It allows me to create my daily to do list, mark off in progress items and then cross off completed ones.

In my notebook I use one page per day where I throw down everything I need to do. At the bottom of the page I track my water versus caffeine consumption (a 2018 habit change in progress). Using a Field Notes in this way is ideal for me due to its small size. I am aware I could use any Field Notes for this job, and I probably will moving forward, but the thicker paper stock in the Resolution edition makes this more durable and tougher wearing for a bullet journal style notebook.

A sample couple of pages.

A sample couple of pages.

I can see this being a long term popular release for the list makers out there, appealing to more than just the Field Notes faithful. I wouldn't be surprised if there are requests to make this edition a staple in the Field Notes line-up. An idea I thoroughly support.

Overall thoughts.

I really like the Resolution edition. I can see this being a two pack that isn't cast aside after a month, but used completely. I don't have a use for the year planner notebook and have actually given both of mine away to people who needed them. But the list notebooks are fantastic. Coloured cover stocks are also heading back to the traditional Field Notes design, which again is welcome. This could all change with the Spring release of course but I really like what Field Notes have done with their final 2017 release. The Winter editions are always the best.

My Fountain Pen Day Line-Up

The fist Friday of November marks International Fountain Pen Day. This year to celebrate I have decided to share the fountain pens I am using and the paper products I use with them.

Lamy LX, Tacticle Turn Gist, Kaweco AL Sport, Kaweco Skyline Sport and the Pilot Kakuno

Lamy LX, Tacticle Turn Gist, Kaweco AL Sport, Kaweco Skyline Sport and the Pilot Kakuno

Fountain pen and ink combinations

Lamy LX in Rose Gold with a medium nib and KWZ Brown Pink - this is a new fountain pen and ink combination both bought at the London Pen Show. The rose gold colour of this pen is gorgeous and works so well with the KWZ Brown Pink ink, it's a natural pairing. Over the past few months I have been enjoying broader nib widths and the medium nib on the Lamy LX is perfect. This was I get to really see and enjoy the inks I am using.

Tactile Turn Gist with a fine nib and Pilot Iroshizuku Shin-Kai - this combination is left over from my 1 week 1 pen mini series. It’s my sensible combination that I can use is almost all scenarios.

Kaweco AL Sport with a fine nib and J. Herbins Bleu Nuit - I really love my AL Sport. The grey colour is so nice in person and the Bleu Nuit seems to be the perfect ink colour for this pen. It’s a very wintery fountain pen and ink partnership.

Kaweco Skyline sport with an extra fine nib and Diamine Ancient Copper - I love the mint colour of this fountain pen, it’s possibly one of my favourites. I have this loaded with a Diamine Ancient Copper cartridge, an ink colour I have been keen to try for some time. The thing is I am not sure that this pairing works very well, therefore I don’t see this partnership lasting long.

Pilot Kaukuno with a medium nib and Pilot Iroshizuku Syo-ro - I love my Kakuno. As it’s a simple, entry level fountain pen I don’t feel too precious about it and its one that comes on the move with me. I opted for Iroshizuku Syo-ro as it’s a nice deep green for the autumnal season.

The notebooks I am using

The notebooks I am using

My current paper choices

The Soukime plain A5 slim notebook is used for blog post planning and outlining of ideas. I have this with plain paper in the dark green cover.

I have a Midori Kraft notebook that I use as a photo journal. This is crammed with photos of my son documenting the small developments he is making and the things we are doing together. This isn’t a journal I use everyday and is somewhere I can experiment with different journaling techniques.

My Rhodia staple bound ruled notebook is being used for notes for my Open University course. I am using this in my Start Bay Navigator.

I have a Clairefontaine ruled notebook for morning pages, or my version of it. This is also in my Navigator.

I am using a Field Notes Lunacy edition notebook to capture notes on the move and for some journaling on the go.

I have the English version of the Hobonichi Techo which I am currently using as a sort of bullet journaling and planning notebook.

My Midori 019 free weekly refill is being used as a small memory keeper recording snippets of my day.

Fountain pen day 2016

I have found that my fountain pen usage has swayed towards Western brands and that I have begun to enjoy a range of different nib sizes. A year ago all of my fountain pen choices would have been extra-fine or fine nibs, but this isn’t the case any more. I have tried to align my current ink colours to the time of year enjoying Autumnal tones. As usual I am using a lot of different notebooks at one time, (I plan on streamlining this a lot next year). Due to my love of fountain pens I have found and acquired a range of notebooks that have the right types of paper for fountain pens.

This year I won't be celebrating Fountain Pen day by adding to my foutain pens as I am happy with my purchases from the London Pen Show. Instead I will be enjoying some time writing and appreciating those fountain pens I own.