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Archive | January, 2013

Smooth Like Butter: Discover the Best Writing Implements in Every Style

30 Jan

Shop all Pens & Pencils on EuropeanPaper.com and discover the best in writing

Moleskine Click Rollerball Pen
The perfect companion to every Moleskine notebook, the Moleskine Click Rollerball Pen has a matte black finish and retractable point for quick and easy use. With proprietary ink matched perfectly to Moleskine paper, we guarantee you’ll find no better Moleskine accessory.

Palomino Graphite HB Eraser Tipped Pencils (12 ct.) (Blue)
Life’s too short to use a cheap pencil. Made of genuine incense-cedar, the Palomino Graphite HB Pencil provides a smooth writing, sketching or drawing experience. Command attention & inspire with the brilliant blue Palomino pencils.

Lamy Safari Fountain Pen
Whether you’ve never written with a fountain pen or you have a daily carry of multiple fountain pens, the Lamy Safari Fountain Pen is loved by all. Exquisite quality + great value = the perfect introductory fountain pen that writes right out of the box.

Monday Notebook, Pen, & Ink Review Round-up

28 Jan

Notebook/Planner Reviews

Well Appointed Desk: Clairefontaine Crok Book Plain Notebook

Leigh Reyes: Moleskine Evernote Smart Notebook

Office Supplies Junkie: Mara-Mi 12 Month Notebook Set

Life Imitates Doodles: Part II-Review of the Leuchtturm Pocket Hard Cover Ruled Notebook 

Ethereal Voices: Quo Vadis Scholar Basic Calendar

Ink Of Me Fondly: Moleskine Green Lego Pocket Plain Notebook

FPGeeks: Clairefontaine Classic Side Wirebound Review

EdJelley: Rhodia No. 16 Graph Notepad

Pen/Pencil Reviews

Palimpsest: The Flying Scotsman Pen  and TomBow Oceanic Mechanical Pencil

From the Pen Cup: Faber-Castell e-motion Fountain Pen and Lamy Safari Apple Green 2012 Limited Edition

FPGeeks: Delta Fusion 82 Fountain Pen – The Awesome Review

Built From Ink & Tea: A Review of the Lamy Safari

FPQuest: Sailor Pro Gear Imperial Black Pen

Inktronics: Sheaffer Intensity Carbon Fiber Fountain Pen

Pentorium: Pelikan Souveran M400 Review

Well Appointed Desk: Pilot Varsity Fountain Pen

Economy Pens: Pilot Razor Point II

East, West, Everywhere: Sailor Clear Candy

Does This Pen Make Me Look Fat: Edison Herald: the pen I hated to love

A Penchant for Paper: Sakura Gelly Rolls Gold Shadow & Silver Shadow

Ink Reviews

Inkdependence: Noodler’s Antietam InkDe Atramentis Steel Blue, and De Atramentis Gandhi

Peaceable Writer: Revisiting Namiki Blue

Built From Ink & Tea: Noodler’s Baystate Blue Ink

EdJelley: Diamine Majestic Purple

FPQuest: Noodler’s Walnut

Misc. Reviews

Simplicity Embellished: Kuretake Little Red Gift Set

Recording Thoughts: Drawing versus writing pencils

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Have a review you’d like included in the round-up? Post the link and title in the comments and we’ll add it here! Note that our comments are moderated, so if it doesn’t show immediately we’ll get to it soon.

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A Handful of Tools & Tips To Help You Organize Your Office

26 Jan

Organize Your Office with the best of the best at EuropeanPaper.com

1) Moleskine Folio Professional Filers (Set of 3) (12 x 9.5)
2) Exacompta Exacard Wirebound Business Card Holder (8 x 6)
3) Blackwing Luxury Large Notebook & Folio Cover (7.5 x 10)
4) Exacompta Exaboard (9.25 x 13.25) (Rhodia pad included)
5) 2013 Planner Sale (with savings up to 35% off!)

Tip #1: Label EVERYTHING!

You know that feeling when you first get a label-maker and you just can’t put it down? Revitalize your office and give yourself an energy boost by picking it up again. Go through old folders that can be re-purposed, finally stick a label on that junk-box you threw together on the top shelf, and label the spines or covers of your notebooks for easy reference.

Tip #2: Start Nesting

Sounds odd, right? Nesting is basically the act of purging the things that distract you and clutter your office, while finding homes for the necessary items like your pens and pencils, folders and notebooks, and other office items. Putting things in their rightful place on a daily or weekly basis will keep your office tidy and you’ll finally remember where you put that darn business card of a friend you’ve been meaning to contact.

Tip #3: Add a Pop of Color

Whether it’s a nice, bright file folder, or the funky lamp in the corner of your office, remember to have a couple vivid hues surrounding you to brighten your mood. Try to keep all the colors cohesive though, as we’re not suggesting you work in an office decorated like Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (unless you’re an avid fan). If you work inside the majority of the day, color will remind you to smile from time to time. (And don’t forget to actually pop out for a walk around the block a couple times a day – nothing is better than exercise and a bit of fresh air.)

Have a quick tip for office organization? Add it in the comments below!

Perfect Productivity Tools: Rhodia A4 4-Color Notebook (Organize by Color)

25 Jan

Productivity Tools for Everyday Life brought to you by EuropeanPaper.com

Rhodia Side Spiralbound A4 4-Color Book (8.25 x 11.75) on EuropeanPaper.com

7 Ways to Celebrate National Handwriting Day

23 Jan

celebrate national handwriting day with EuropeanPaper.com!

Celebrate handwriting with EuropeanPaper.com on Instagram – follow us @EuroPaper

1) Practice your penmanship. No, seriously. The small things in today’s world have such an increased focus on them, that you’ll appreciate having nice handwriting when the time comes to write a thank you letter, sympathy note, or love letter.

2) Start a new journal if you don’t already have one in rotation. Need inspiration? Check out our blog post: 10 Ideas for a Journaling Jump Start (or just start writing about National Handwriting Day)!

3) If you have more than one notebook you journal in currently, go through each one and write a paragraph about this day/week.

4) Volunteer at your local elementary or middle school and help teach children how to improve their handwriting–and why it’s important! Check out Campaign for Cursive for more information. (h/t Canon-McmillanPatch)

5) Take your time, sit down with your favorite stationery or note card, and write that thank you letter you’ve been avoiding since the holidays. Here’s how: How to Write a Thank You Letter.

6) Did you know National Handwriting Day was created on the birthday of Declaration of Independence signer John Hancock? See his beautiful signature on Wikipedia and see if you can recreate it freehand

7) Never used a fountain pen before? Today’s the day! Learn how to write with a fountain pen!

Need more inspiration? Check out our blogroll for amazing snail mailers, pen & pencil aficionados, and writers galore HERE

And that’s just scratching the surface. What are some of your suggestions for celebrating National Handwriting Day? Leave them in the comments below!

 

The Not-So-Elusive Key to an Organized 2013

21 Jan

This time of year, every venue offers you tips to organize your life, improve your situation, save money, save time, lose weight and be happier. Most advice involves buying more, doing more, or finding time and labor-intensive ways to do more with less. Let me offer another option … LESS.

Period. Own less. Do less. Be responsible for less. Enjoy life more. 

Collectors vs. Hoarders

Organizational fanatics usually collect lots of things, but they keep everything organized, so they fool themselves it’s somehow better than hoarding. I still struggle with organizational delusions. That stopped when I started to notice how much of my life was being absorbed by organizing, maintaining, and handling all my many “things.”

Now, I’m taking action.

Baby Steps

I’m creating a better 2013 for myself by eliminating things. I’ll always write long-hand in addition to my digital creations. I will always swoon at the smell of ink and paper, run my hand over sheaves of nice stationery, and want to take every writing utensil I see for a test drive. I know this about myself, so I’m learning to work with it instead of against it.

Being a writer and a tech geek means I collect more “stuff” than most. Paper, pens, pencils, desk supplies, cords, chargers, accessories and ways to carry, store, and organize it all thrills me! It is my biggest hurdle. Once I started paying attention, I realized I always reach for the rollerball in my purse when jotting notes and I always reach for my special fountain pen when I’m at my desk. All my other handwriting implements remain untouched.

When on the road, I reach for the best no-tangle charge cord for my phone/tablet and the small, most powerful charger block – so why do I sort through the dozen or so that collect in my computer bag and purse? I always grab one tech bag … so why do I own a slew of them? Some girls have shoe collections; mine are books, writing implements and tech gadgets. I own two laptops and a desktop, but always grab the same light-weight ultrabook, even when I’m working at home.

Rather than having a dozen notebooks and journals, I’ve trimmed it back to a small stock of excellent quality composition books and a luxury leather cover to make using these workhorse notebooks a pure visual and tactile delight.

The more things I have, the less I appreciate each individual thing.

Stuff = Time

Stuff requires time: YOUR time. First you must determine what you want, then locate it, make the money to buy it, mentally justify the purchase, deal with the packaging it comes in, find a place to store it, and begin feeling a grain of guilt when it sits there unused. It’s a huge responsibility. Pretty soon, the grains pile up and you find yourself in a buried. 

Purging Toward Freedom

The best part of an elimination purge is tossing projects that have been around, unfinished, for years. I realized the things I wanted to do in my 20s no longer really fit the “me” of today. Give yourself permission to change your mind about projects, hobbies, and pursuits. I don’t feel guilty for old unfinished projects now. I tossed them out. Instant relief.

I’ve discarded books (BOOKS for goodness sake!) in my “to read” pile. If I’ve not read those stacks in the last few years, it’s probably because I really prefer the ones I actually have read. More guilt gone.

Despite my love of the printed word and actual ink on paper, I read ebooks more often, especially those I will only read once. That eliminates physical clutter and I can keep a huge library of books on a variety of topics without dusting, storing, or organizing them. My physical library has been reduced to my leather-bound classics and reference books.

I’ve had art supplies for years that I want to use, but never did because I was busy managing all the other obligations in my life (many of them the result of juggling too much stuff). I’ve sorted and pruned my art implements and now have the time to use them. It’s nice!

Take the plunge!

Life is too short to spend all your time dealing with things that don’t matter, aren’t perfect, or you don’t enjoy. If you decide to take a purging approach to your new year, let me advise you to keep only the best quality of the things you really love. If that means tossing a dozen so-so items and buying one awesome one, do it!

It’s difficult to purge, but you will love the results! I promise. I’m living proof.

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Meet the Writer: Angela Allen has been creating online content for small business clients since 1999, when she had to use a painfully slow dial-up connection. Now, she specializes in real estate topics and organic content marketing for entrepreneurs on a gloriously high-speed connection. When she’s not writing for WickedWriter.com clients, she enjoys the discipline of living small in her high-tech cabin deep in the woods of Kentucky, blogging on WickedBlog, and enjoying the pure tactile titillation of going “old-school” and writing with a fountain pen on luxury paper.

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Don’t Miss Out on Big Datebook Savings

19 Jan

We know how hectic the holidays and the New Year can become. Whether you’ve already bought a 2013 planner and aren’t happy with it, you’ve totally forgot to get your 2013 datebook yet (it’s only mid-January, right?), or you’re a planner extraordinaire and love a second or third datebook, have we got a datebook sale for you! All 2013 datebooks and refills have been discounted and prices are marked on the product page.

See the full selection here >> 2013 Datebook Sale

Save up to 35% on all 2013 Datebooks on EuropeanPaper.com - Don't miss out, shop now!

Link Love: Productivity Tips & Resolutions Help for the New Year

18 Jan

We could all use a bit of a boost this time of the month. Resolutions were made, and perhaps are not as present in your mind as they were right after New Year’s, so take a moment to peruse the links for inspiration, motivation, and a brief moment to relax and read!

Lost Coast Post: How To Complete a 365 Challenge

FastCompany: 11 Productivity Hacks From Super-Productive People

365 Letters: 2013 Letter Writing Topics

Forbes: Ten Resolutions The Most Successful People Make And Then Keep

Plannerisms: Fitting your Goals into your Schedule

Frugal Guidance: Use Evernote to Remember ANYTHING, Frugally

Recording Thoughts: Super Simple GTD Approach For Traveler’s Notebook

Lifehack: 10 Things You Need to Learn to Live a Super Happy Life (h/t Ms.Logica)

Kaizen Journaling: 45 Things You Can Write In Your Journal

A Penchant for Paper: My Productivity System

Perfect Productivity Tools: Rhodia A4 Meeting Book (All-in-one Efficiency)

16 Jan

Productivity Tools for Everyday Life brought to you by EuropeanPaper.com - Rhodia A4 Meeting Notebook

Rhodia Side Spiralbound A4 Meeting Book (9 x 11.75) on EuropeanPaper.com

‘Best of 2012′ Pen & Paper Community Link Love Edition

14 Jan

Image Sourced via Creative Commons User MaxxTraffic - click the image for more of his work2012 was such an amazing year for EuropeanPaper.com and we want to thank all of YOU, our readers and customers, who helped get us to where we are today.

  • We added multiple brands to the website that included Field Notes, Blackwing and Palomino, Lamy, Whitelines, and Stillman & Birn, among others.
  • Rhodia and Moleskine continued to lead the pack as our top selling brands, and we revamped our website toward the end of the year with easy-to-search product filters, integrated brand stories, and so much more!
  • Not to mention we added over 200 new blog posts throughout 2012, and our busiest day on the blog culminated in 1,500+ blog views!

And that’s just a taste of what’s to come in 2013 on EuropeanPaper.com! To start, we’ve got tons of blog posts with productivity tips to get your year started on the right foot, new brands and new offerings from current brands, and plenty of fun giveaways and contests to keep you delighted. We’ll keep you updated as we go, and if you ever have comments, requests, or questions, you can always leave a comment on our blog or email info@europeanpaper.com (and if you want to guest blog with us, email leah@europeanpaper.com specifically).

Cheers to a happy, healthy, and prosperous 2013 for everyone! And have some fun perusing the below ‘Best of 2012′ Pen & Paper Community Link Love Edition we pulled together.

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Inkophile: A Simple 2013 Fountain Pen Resolution
A Bunch Of Links Including Your Favorites And My Lists

A Penchant for Paper: Best of the Blog 2012

Kaizen Journaling: What I read in 2012 & KJ Book Awards

Leigh Reyes: 2012 Top Ten Pens & 2013 Fountain Pen Wallpaper

Plannerisms: Goal, Resolution, Project, Task: Definitions and Examples

52 Letters Project: Happy New Year from The 52 Letters Project!

Well Appointed Desk: Top Ten Most Popular Posts for 2012

Papered Thoughts: The Resolution

On Fountain Pens: Top 10 pens of 2012

Ink Circles: End of the World Remix

Letters from a (Someday) Editor: 30 Lessons 2012 Taught Me

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Did we miss your Best of 2012 blog post? Leave the link in a comment below and we’ll add it!

Small Business Expenses Solution: The Moleskine Daily Planner Set

11 Jan

I’m always trying to balance the digital part of my life with my penchant for low-tech, traditional paper and pen. As a freelance writer and web content marketer, that means I’ve tried just about every system coming and going – both digital and paper.

No matter what I do, I end up at the end of the year, sorting through receipts, checking all my notebooks for scribbles on mileage and lunch meetings, and scouring my email for automatic payments on business bills. It’s humbling, if not downright depressing. It also takes three or four days and I’m in such a foul mood everyone cuts me a HUGE path. For years, “I’m working on taxes” was the only thing I could say that would actually strike terror into my children and make them quiet and cautious.

For 2013, I’m taking a new path. I’m going to use the 2013 Moleskine Daily Planner Set.

Moleskine 2013 Daily Planner Box Set on EuropeanPaper.com

Moleskine 2013 Daily Planner Box Set on EuropeanPaper.com

More to Love; Less to Carry

I like keeping a notebook with me all the time to capture ideas, snippets of conversations, and general information I may need to reference later. The problem is, I usually go out without what I need because I don’t like to carry too much when I leave the house. The smaller size of a pocket planner solves that as it is small enough to fit in my purse (so I’ll always have it with me), yet big enough for my ideas to fill it up before returning it to the binder set.

Why This Will Work

The Moleskine Daily Planner Set meets my needs beautifully by giving me a new daily planner each month with a full page per day for jotting down mileage AS it’s HAPPENING in one place, automatic payments that hit my account, automatic withdrawals to pay bills, who I meet for a business lunch and what we discuss, and I can even record those little office supplies I pick up while I’m out doing personal shopping.

I only wish each month had the expandable pocket in the back to hold those pesky little receipts that are so easy to lose. Since they don’t come with one, I’ll be adding them to each volume myself.

Once the month is over, I’ll return the book to the binder and take out a new one. At the end of the year, I’ll have a complete set outlining my year in business in one convenient place. And I’ll have a written record should I ever get audited (without having to scour my computer system and pull together old files).

My income tracking is handled online (I use Cashboard and love it). I can pull a year-end report and have all the invoicing and payment information in a flash because I do all my billing through that one online system and all my clients pay online. It’s the little expenses here and there, the daily stuff, that make me crazy. I’m confident the Moleskine Daily Planner Set should solve the problem.

Why My Other Systems Didn’t Work

I like a paper version of bookkeeping records – it’s faster to jot down expenses than to power up a computer and open a program to do it – but never could remember to carry my record book with me everywhere (and didn’t want to, since it was so big). I’d also forget to log items when I returned to the office, meaning I’d lose business expenses deductions every year to my faulty system. It also means I always felt like I was playing “catch up.”

I’ve tried phone apps and tablet apps and computer apps. They were always too time-intensive to set up, too awkward to use on the run, or too focused in their application (meaning they would only track mileage and I’d have to open another app to do meals and another to do miscellaneous business expenses like office supplies, professional subscriptions and equipment). The few that showed promise invariably crashed and lost several months worth of data that cost me more time to recover and/or research all over again than they were worth. It also made my language get a little too colorful for comfort. Granted, today’s digital systems and “cloud” backups mean this happens less, but I’ve been burned too many times, now. No thank you.

What I need is a single, portable place to dump and store all my information. I love the fact that this page-a-day format will eliminate my need to write the date of each purchase. I know that’s a little thing, but it irks me. With these monthly volumes, I’ll jot down what it was, how much it was, and where I bought it – and list the project if it’s for a specific client – then slip the receipt in the (soon to be) homemade back pocket.

I Want a SIMPLE System

I can’t wait to get my set to begin my new system. It’s currently on order so I can start the year right – and of course the planner set will be the first items listed in my business expenses for January! I’m going to be so organized and efficient this year! (And I won’t have to lug around a huge book to accomplish it – just a single slender monthly volume.)

The ONLY thing that could make it better would be a built-in back pocket per notebook and access to a set that was varying shades of purple instead of rainbow colors … but that’s just me.

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Meet the Writer: Angela Allen has been creating online content for small business clients since 1999, when she had to use a painfully slow dial-up connection. Now, she specializes in real estate topics and organic content marketing for entrepreneurs on a gloriously high speed connection. When she’s not writing for WickedWriter.com clients, she enjoys the discipline of living small in her high-tech cabin deep in the woods of Kentucky, blogging on WickedBlog, and enjoying the pure tactile titillation of going “old-school” and writing with a fountain pen on luxury paper.

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Editor’s Note: Shopping for a 2013 Daily Planner? Discover all available 2013 day-per-page datebooks here. Prefer weekly or monthly formats? We’ve got those too for 2013: All Weekly 2013 Planners and All 2013 Monthly Planners.

Find Your Favorite: Shop Daily, Weekly, & Monthly Planners

9 Jan

Shop all Daily Planners and Datebooks from Moleskine and more on EuropeanPaper.com

Shop all Weekly Planners and Datebooks from Moleskine and more on EuropeanPaper.com

Shop all Monthly Planners and Datebooks from Moleskine and more on EuropeanPaper.com

Or need a planner refill? Shop all 2013 Datebook Refills here >>