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My Highly Recommended List

There are plenty of stationery blogs that share their top 5 stationery items. This is something I have wanted to add to for some time but I have decided to share in a slightly different format. I will have a dedicated Highly Recommended page included on The Finer Point where I will share some of my favourite stationery related things. This list will be updated and added to on a regular basis. I hope you find this list helpful.

The TWSBI 580 RB fountain pen

The TWSBI 580 RB fountain pen

Fountain Pens
TWSBI 580 RB - I always have this fountain pen inked up as I enjoy using it so much. I have never experienced issues with my TWSBI and this has been a constant in my fountain pen rotation ever since I first bought it.

Pilot Metropolitan - I think this is the best starter / entry level fountain pen on the market. You get the fantastic Japanese fountain pen experience, a great aluminium barrel and all for a fab price.

Kaweco AL Sport - this is the perfect pocket fountain pen. Its durable, small and writes well. I have several of the pocket Kaweco fountain pens and was slow to add the AL Sport, but it has become a firm favourite.

Pencils
Palomino Blackwing - I can't pick one Blackwing pencil for this list therefore I am lumping them all together. I enjoy the full range on offer and have bought 3 out of the 4 Volumes that have been released over the past 12 months. Each and every Blackwing pencil is high quality and is good for different situations. I always have one with me and they had to be included on my Highly Recommended list.

Staedtler Tradition - This is a pencil which is easy to come by here in the UK and a standard school grade pencil. I really like the simple design and high quality finish of this pencil. I have this in a H grade which makes it the perfect pencil for long form writing and using on the go.

Pens

Zebra Sarasa Clip 0.5mm - this has become my favourite gel ink pen. I love how these pens write and the range of colours on offer. My preferred size is the 0.5mm but there are alternatives available.

Uni-ball Eye Needlepoint - this has been a pen which I have used for years. I really like this rollerball and love the super dark black ink. A staple in my pen pot or desk drawer.

Uni-Pin Drawing Pen - this is by far my favourite of all the drawing pens I have tested. I have been using these pens to practice sketching but they are also a daily pen I use for Bullet Journaling.

Ink

Pilot Iroshizuku Ink - I really love the Iroshizuku line of fountain pen inks and have several different colours in my collection. They are lovely, wet inks that flow well in most fountain pens I have used and they come in a gorgeous array of different colours.

Diamine Ink - Diamine are a British brand that produces a whole host of fountain pen ink colours. I have tried several different colours and have never been disappointed. They also offer cartridges in a number of their ink colours which I have used with the Kaweco Sport fountain pens.

Podcasts

The Pen Addict Podcast - this podcast surely doesn’t need an introduction. I love hearing what Brad and Myke have to say each week and they have definitely been responsible for multiple purchases and also for me starting The Finer Point.

Art Supply Posse - I am not artist but I really enjoy listening to Ana and Heather discuss different art supply products. Art supplies is an area which really intrigues me and these guys are shedding light and helping me to learn.

Erasable - For your pencil fix this is the podcast for you. These guys know their stuff and I enjoying hearing their thoughts on different pencil and paper products.

Blogs

The London Parchment - I love Priya’s posts, reviews and especially her photography. There is always something fun here to read and enjoy so be sure to check this blog out.

Wonder Pens - I love the Wonder Pens blog. Not only do you learn lots about different stationery products but you also get some insight into the personal workings of a family stationery store. I am also a little bit in love with the new addition to the store, their adorable little kitten.

All Things Stationery - Tessas reviews and posts always catch my eye. The products reviewed are different to some of the standard stationery blogs out there and I am always envious of her photography. The stationery shops map has also proved very handy and useful, so be sure to check this out.

Three Staples - Jinnies posts on all things Field Notes have become well known within the stationery community. The links she makes between different editions are brilliant and again the photography is on point.

Paper Products

A number of different Baron Fig pocket (previously Apprentice) notebooks

A number of different Baron Fig pocket (previously Apprentice) notebooks

Baron Fig - I enjoy using the Baron Fig pocket notebooks and have been using at least one in my passport size Travelers Notebook for a while now.

Field Notes - another staple pocket notebook carry. These notebooks are great fun and have a great community of users. The colors limited edition notebooks push the boundaries of how a pocket notebook can be created and used. There is never a dull moment with a Field Notes pocket notebook, which is why they had to make my list.

Leuchtturm1917 - this is my Bullet Journal notebook of choice. This notebook is the perfect size, it comes in great colours and has a high quality paper stock.

Traveler’s Notebook - I have written a number of reviews on these notebooks which you can see here and here. They are my one stationery constant and I really enjoy using the Travelers Notebook and Midori branded paper.

YouTubers

Wei Taillandier - I love the watercolour tutorials on Wei’s YouTube channel. I find it fascinating to see her process. She also reviews a number of paper and notebook products which I have found informative and helpful.

Seaweed Kisses - There are some fantastic videos especially focused on the Travelers Notebook system on this channel. The set-ups videos are particularly interesting and have shaped the ways in which I use my own Travelers Notebook.

Boho Berry - essential viewing for any aspiring Bullet Journaler. Boho Berry shares how she Bullet Journals and her page designs give you some great ideas. This channel is definitely a rabbit hole, so be warned.

Froggies TN - I really enjoy watching these YouTube videos. I appreciate the subtitles and find the French accent of the YouTuber very relaxing.

StudioBAS - the videos on this channel are short and sweet. I like the format of each video and again have gained Bullet Journal inspiration from this channel.

Instagrammers

Eunice Roe - Eunice has great Travelers Notebook photos sharing her layouts and spreads on a regular basis. A lot of what she has done has inspired my own Travelers Notebook journaling.

Catherine Mi-Sook - I love the posts Catherine shares. I think I have liked every single photo! The calligraphy is gorgeous, the quotes insightful and the composition of the photos stunning.

I think this list says a lot about how I use stationery and what sort of things I enjoy using. If I have created this list 12 months ago it would not have looked very different, therefore I am sure over the next 12 months it will evolve and change as I discover new things.

New Things for 2016

For 2016 I decided to make a small, humble lists of things I want try, and in some cases develop, throughout the year. These aren't resolutions as I think that word just sets you up for failure. These are a list of things I want to do to develop and make my use of stationery more enjoyable.   

Incorporating a daily photo into my journaling 

My 2016 Hobonichi Techo

My 2016 Hobonichi Techo

One of my aims for the year is to take a photo every day. I have tried to do this in the past, a photo a day, or a photo at a specific time every day but I have always failed.

This year however by including the photo in my Hobonichi journaling I have been more aware of what I have done through the day and what photo depicts that day well. Because it is linked to my journaling I have found that I am sticking to it and conscious that I actually want to have that photo in my Hobonichi. In months to come I should be able to flick through my Hobonichi and see photographic reminders of what I have done.  

I have been saving a photo sized space in my Hobonichi Techo with an old photo being used as a handy spacer. At the end of every month I will print the photos I have taken each day from an online resource and then stick or washi these in. I have allocated a 'to print' folder in my Photos app on my phone which has a collection of the photos I have taken so far. At some point I will look at investing in an instant photo printer, but only if I stick to this new ritual.  

Learn to use watercolours

My small Winsor and Newton watercolour set

My small Winsor and Newton watercolour set

I am going to try and play around with watercolour paints this year. I definitely won't become an artist or landscape painter, but I would like to try and add some watercolours into my journaling and specifically into my Travelers Notebook. I have seen a few Instagrammers that do this and it looks great and is something I have wanted to try for some time. I have a Winsor and Newton small watercolour set that I picked up after Christmas that includes some basic colours to get me started.  

Instagram for nerdiness

This year I have set up a Instagram account for my blog and I will be posting all my stationery nerdiness there. I wanted to have a dedicated account where I could post photos of how I use my stationery and follow likeminded people. 

Play around with calligraphy 

I want to try and improve my handwriting this year. I like writing in cursive and I have tried using a dip pen a few times. I was inspired to try my hand at calligraphy when watching the Ink - written by hand video made by Ryan Couldrey (if you haven't watched this video, do it now. It's great!). I am a real novice by I love trying things out with the dip pen. I have done some lettering for a family member and really enjoyed it, so this year I want to improve and learn some more. 

Use more of the ink I own

A selection of my inks

A selection of my inks

I don't rotate my inks very well and therefore don't use the small collection that I own. So this year I want to ensure that I use more of what I own and re-ink my fountain pens regularly. This also ties in with the plan to practice calligraphy as I can use different colours with my dip pen. 

Do you have any stationery goals for 2016? If so I would love to hear about them. I will endeavour to post updates here that relate to my goals for this year, that way you can all keep track of my progress.  

Social Update - New Instagram Account

I recently created a dedicated Instagram account for The Finer Point to allow me to share all my geeky stationery goodness with likeminded people. 

You can find me on Instagram @thefinerpoint

I haven't posted too much there yet but I love using Instagram to see how people use their stationery tools. It's a great place to get inspiration and ideas and for 2016 I have decided that I will contribute and share how I use mine.