The Re:Mark: I'm in (paper) love
Notebooks, pens, highlighters. Post-Its, folders, staplers, paper clips, scissors...you name it, I have it on my desk. To be honest, I do most of my creative writing on my phone – so why is it that I’m still completely obsessed and can’t walk past a stationery store without getting sucked in? What is it about stationery that has us all lusting after a new notebook season after season? Maybe for me it's because new stationery's more interesting than the latest reality show – writing excites me more than anything!
Stationery takes me right back to school, when a new year meant brand-new shoes, a new schoolbag, and – most importantly – new notebooks. It was something that was mine and not school property: I could write in it and graffiti the front cover as much as I wanted without getting into trouble. Plus I could doodle hearts dedicated to my latest crush while yawning my way through math.
Fast forward to today, and I still love picking a new notebook and deciding what I’m going to use it for. There’s major nostalgia involved here. And although some of us
obsess love it more than others, I have a hard time thinking of anyone who hates stationery.
So even though I spend all day looking at a screen and writing in a Word doc, I still have to take pen and paper into all my meetings. I think what I really like is feeling organized: taking notes and planning my schedule on paper to give me a ready-made map of the week ahead. And the to-do lists! Let’s not forget about the love of making a to-do list! I still get a kick out of checking things off my list at the end of the day – Every. Single. Time. Who’s with me?
However. Outside of work, you’ll find me making all of my shopping lists on my phone. I even write my column on my phone on the train commute (I worry that a spark of inspiration might disappear if I don’t get it down there and then).
There have been so many times that I’ve thought of a great feature/column/chapter idea and SWORE I’d never forget it, because it’s just SO good... Then an hour later I’m totally kicking myself because it's gone! My phone's always on me, so I really have no excuse...
But back to paper: like carrying a fave magazine in your hand and lovingly flicking though its pages, there’s the same emotional connection to hugging a notepad to your chest on the way to a meeting. The world may be digital, but there's still space for things you can touch, right? I know I’m not the only one to have a monogrammed notebook (the adult version of writing your name in White-Out on your school pencil case, BTW). Lucky for our style, we've moved on!
I’m not sure that writing notes on a tablet ever really took off. I def know taking pics with one didn’t – anyone who’s been stuck behind a tablet picture-taker at Fashion Week will know why – but our smartphones are different. Easy to hold. Always in your bag or pocket. Lets you multitask, taking notes while listening to music – and answering calls and sending texts. An urbanite's dream, and a total life necessity! Luckily you can also use it to listen to a mediation app at the end of the day... Namaste.
There's something romantic about putting pen to paper and writing down your innermost thoughts, whether for a journal, brainstorming or just a travel planner. You’re not just organizing your life in a notebook: you’re confiding in it too.
One thing that def never gets old? The feeling you get when someone gives you a handwritten note or sends you a letter in the mail – you know they took the time to write it especially for you, so it means a lot more than a Facebook message or a text. Is that back-to-school feeling we all love just us longing for control and independence? Maybe...and I’ll take it! I may be a control freak, but I’ll probs be doing it with an oh-so-chic monogrammed notebook and a fab pen!