I got interested in bullet journalling just over a year ago. I should have realised that when your OCD friend introduces you to something it is going to be VERY organised. VERY.
Well, not only was it organised (which, believe me, I NEED!), but the groups that I ended up joining we so crammed full of beautifully illustrated journals that my own paltry offering palled into nothingness and I ended up really quite stressed at all the bells and whistles that people use when journalling - tape, ribbons, elastics, printables, stickers and charms *hyperventilates just thinking about it*.
My mum says that BUYING art supplies and USING art supplies are two entirely different hobbies, and so it is with bullet journalling, I think. Surely the act of creation of many of these magnificent journals is a hobby in itself?
I ended up leaving most of the groups and feeling quite bummed out about the whole thing. Which is a shame because, as I said, it's all about being organised.
Cut to January of this year *does the wavery hands time shift thing* and I decided to give it another bash. This time on MY terms. And those terms, dear reader, involved a black biro (I know - PERFIDY!) a fountain pen and a ruler.
And guess what? I've been bullet journalling since January 2017 like this (with the odd - temporary - foray into washi tape and coloured pencils) and it is absolutely the best way to keep track of my life!
I got a couple of TN inserts from Rob at Personalised Stationery in unlined and dot grid and have been using them to record all sorts of things. Mostly quotes from Senecca at the moment, if I'm honest. And some terrible sketches in the unlined one .... which I'm absolutely not sharing.
Rob's paper is just GREAT for fountain pen use as I've mentioned before and I have been throwing one or other of the notebooks into my handbag for use on the ferry or whenever I've got something that I want to keep a note of (it's amazing how often the Muse strikes when you've actually got a pen and something to record in!)
However, there's no getting away from it - without a cover, your journal can get dog-eared pretty quickly.
I went on the hunt for a cover for my TNs.
There are lots of lovely leather covers out there - usually with one elastic fitted down the spine to allow you to slot in your TN and with an elastic that slides around the belly, to hold the whole thing closed in your handbag or knapsack.
I get a bit antsy when it comes to buying leather things from countries where I don't know too much about their animal welfare, so I knew that I was looking for a British company. I know. I'm pathetic. I am a shit vegetarian who loves leather. Although I have not tasted bacon for 18 months now, so am quietly proud of that.
I also wanted more than one elastic in my journal cover - I can't imagine me and a leather bradawl without also picturing a jaunt to A&E ...
And I also wanted something that felt ... kinda broken in ... with a no-nonsense aesthetic.
Now, enter stage left, Start Bay's beautiful journals and the delights of a Traveller's Notebook. I'm sticking with the 'Traveller' not 'Traveler' because: Scottish, not American. These journals are abbreviated to TN (avoids all transatlantic fall-outs over spelling for a start) and they are my New Best Friend.
This Start Bay cover will make a classy gift to someone special.
It arrives in a lovely little unbleached cotton bag ....
decorated with the Start Bay Notebooks logo in leather
And voila! The TN sized notebook cover. Start Bay offer lots of different sized notebooks with different finished and even different colours of closing elastics (this one is the 'original dark brown' option).
Accept no imitations
the logo should also be stamped into the leather on the rear.
The journal cover comes with one notebook to get you started.
It has four elastics to hold your TNs in place.
BTW - if you want something more personalised - feel free to add charms! Start Bay have a lovely selection of charms that begin at a quid - aeroplanes, dragonflies, skull and crossbones etc. AND pen loops for £3.50. AND self-adhesive pockets (perfect for storing receipts and tickets) at £3.50 for three.
But it can comfortably take quite a few.
I think that they recommend a bundle of inserts up to 20mm
in depth. But why stop there, is what I say!
I loved this Start Bay Journal Cover so much that I bought my brother one for his Christmas - and yes, there was a light-bulb charm, a receipt holder and a couple of Personalised Statonery inserts for it!
It's beautiful and it's British!
It's beautiful and it's British!