Trialling “The Little Black Book”

Good Morning Everyone!

So, I succumbed to the charms of the Moleskine Notebook.

Traveler’s Notebook and Filofax users, please don’t be disheartened – I haven’t left you! I’m just trying new ways to streamline things.  See, this is the problem.  I want EVERYTHING together – my calendar, my bills information, my cash envelope system, a place to keep receipts, my passwords, my cards, my notes, my spending tracker… it’s proving to be rather difficult!

The Midori Regular was perhaps the closest I could get to what I wanted. But it was NOT streamlining at all, it was heavier, bulkier, and I couldn’t even fit my notes notebook into the elastics as it was so full!

Next was the Midori Passport – which was actually perfect… for my cash envelope system, and as a basic purse/wallet function.  But I couldn ‘t carry my notebooks with me.  I got a lot of compliments on the Passport whenever I went to stores – nobody had ever seen a purse/wallet like it.  I’d hold up the queues explaining the brand and that it was primarily used as a notebook but you could switch up the inserts and completely customise to meet your requirements.

I was browsing Pinterest for more information on the Traveler’s Notebooks and how others utilized their Traveler’s Notebooks – call me curious, but I get so many ideas from others, and I customize them to suit my needs. One thing that had been grabbing my attention for a while was this thing called a Moleskine.  Sure, I’d seen these overpriced notebooks in the likes of Paperchase, WHSmith and Waterstones, but I just couldn’t justify spending over £10 on a notebook.  Sure, they have diaries, but they also have blank, sketch, lined, dot and grid paper too.  The things some of the more creative people had done with their Moleskines had me lost for words.  There are many, many talented people out there.  I wanted in!

I thought long and hard, and came across a web page documenting how to create credit card inserts to place on a page in a Moleskine (or any other notebook). I wondered if I could do a similar thing but over 2 pages of a pocket size, to create the cash envelope system.  But I’m a very curious cat… so instead of thinking very long, I bit the bullet, jumped in my car and shot over to my local shopping centre.

I purchased my pocket blank notebook for £9.99 in Waterstones. I decided on the blank because it meant that I could use the book for anything I wanted – I could create a calendar, I could doodle, write notes, create templates, glue things in… basically I could freestyle whatever I needed to.

I had also read that the “unofficial” pen of the Moleskine was the Pilot G2, which I found in Paperchase also. In fact, I found the mini/pocket size.  I purchased a black and blue.

Getting back home, I sat at my table and looked a bit daunted at the prospect of having to completely begin from scratch.

The first thing I wanted was to put the cash envelope system to use. I cut the back of my required amount of envelopes off and left a little lip to glue onto the pages, staggering each one slightly lower until they filled the pages.

Next, I needed a pen loop. I ripped an elasticated pen loop from and old La-De-Dah scrapbook that I’d never used and pretty much just taped it into the back of the book.

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I placed a 2016 year overview calendar, a pocket size printable taken from Wendaful Designs printed out and glued into the book.

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Then I started working on the calendar. I decided I only wanted one for the next few months, as who knows, by the new year I might be using something else, or I may have stuck to the Moleskine, loved it so much and need a new one!

In the calendar, I wrote my monthly bills in the dates they were due to come out of my account, I wrote any social events, holiday days, days my manager was not in the office, appointments and general things to remember. I colour code highlighting these events.

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After the calendar, I glued my monthly bills excel tracker in. Then I added tabs using labels that I’d got left over.  Got a sharpie marker and coloured the labels in black, then used a white gel pen to draw tiny little symbols to notify me what section is where.

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After all of that, I felt that the book was a little too “serious” still, and needed to inject a bit of colour, a bit of “me” into the whole thing.

So, this is where my Pinterest and Google searches came in handy. I’m a lover of anything vintage inspired, or anything whimsical, dreamy, bohemian.  They are my favorite type of photographs I love searching for, looking at and wishing I could take a photograph just as fantastic.

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I printed out a lot of photographs found mostly on google, creating photo collages and printing on normal printer paper to keep the book thin, and then cutting out and affixing to the pages using corner adhesives I’d purchased from Paperchase. I also used a photograph on the front of the notebook to give it a more personal touch.

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I’m not finished with the set up yet – I need to create an template and an area for writing out my spending and tabbing out dedicated sections for that and my notes etc…

All in all, I’m really happy with the notebook so far – it’s small, it’s thin, it’s portable, it’s sleek, it looks pretty cool, it holds almost everything I need (I just need to find somewhere to hold my cards still as I’m unsure that the Moleskine will still be as neat with 10+ cards in…)

The paper feels sublime, very smooth and easy to write on – I love the cream colour of the pages, and the cover feels soft and slightly grained, very tactile! I chose the non-hard cover as I wanted the cover to be able to mould to the shape of the book and get that thumbed through, weathered appearance rather than it being rigid.

I’ve been using this system for almost a week, and while it’s early days, I get really excited when I have to pen an appointment in or take it out for “something”. The only thing I am a little more “shy” about is taking it out for my money at the cash registers.  There is every possibility that I may need to remove my envelope system back into my Mulberry purse/wallet…

The planner peace continues!

Have you ever used a Moleskine to plan/track/place notes/journal/as a purse (wallet) before?

Kel

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Trying out the Passport Midori Traveler’s Notebook as a Wallet/Purse

You can watch the video of my change HERE 

And this is how I made the Cash Envelope System into my Passport Midori Traveler’s Notebook:

Firstly, I gathered supplies. Traveler’s Notebook, Insert (to use as a measuring tool), envelopes that fit your cash, glue stick, tape, pen/pencil (for marking), siscors, something to create a label (be it a marker pen, excel labels, Dynamo Label maker) and a piece of card.


Firstly, take all of your envelopes and decide how many you want to use for your cash envelope system.


Fold them all so that the flap is facing inwards.


Glue the unflapped sides together, like so:


And it will look like a booklet when finished.


Next, open out all of your flaps:


Create your labels. I used excel, placed thick boarders around each one and made sure I had everything twice:


Once cut out, I then began to create the tabs, utilising the flaps of the envelopes.


The result looked like this:


Out of card, I traced around an insert and provided it around 5mm of spine.


I also created some little secretarial pockets from the envelopes to fit on the outsides of the booklet for receipts or tickets etc.

I then added tape to the edges of the envelopes to give them strength.


Then glued the first edge of the booklet onto the card, slid the notebook through the Midori Traveler’s Notebook Middle elastic and glued the other side down.


Pulled through my zipper pocket behind the elastic and voila!


Have you used your Passport Traveler’s Notebook as a Wallet/Purse/Cash Envelope System?

Kel

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Designing My Cash Envelope System in the Midori Traveler’s Notebook

Hello everyone!

After umming and ahhing and wondering about the Cash Envelope System, I took to thinking of how I would create the “booklet” to hold all of my cash.

I looked to YouTube and found this amazing video which gave me my idea of how to put my own spin on things. Here’s what I did:


Purchased lots of envelopes that just about fit a note of monetary value.


Stuck labels and sticky notes on them, the labels for designated areas that I will assign my cash to, the sticky notes to help keep a running total of what is in the envelope.

 

Cut card stock down to the exact size of an insert.


Stuck down the envelope to the cardstock.


Piled all on top of eachother and as per the video, worked from the middle page out to tape the opposing sides of the booklet together.

 

Then I binded them all together to create a booklet. Added embellishments and then cash🙂


I’ve had to remove my blank paper notes section for this area for the moment as its looking quite thick!! 


How is your traveler’s notebook experience so far?

Kel

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Midori as a Cash Envelope System?

Hello Everyone!

Well, bang goes our last Bank Holiday in the UK until Christmas! It’s all uphill from here.

I’m an Autumn Girl though, so my favourite season is almost upon us. I’m excited… I love the crunching of the leaves, the crisp air first thing in the morning, the fashion… Oh, the fashion is phenomenal… The colours, the chunky sweaters and chunky over the knee socks and boots and skinny jeans and fedoras and scarves… I’m in my element!

But anyway, I’m digressing.


Lately it been debating whether to utilise my Traveler’s Notebook as a purse (or wallet, to our American Friends🙂 ).

*Sidenote – can you see how different the leathers are on my Traveler’s Notebooks?  Both made by Midori, my Passport was my first purchase in from Amazon 2015, and from day 1 the leather felt smooth and almost shiny.  It’s almost impossible to scratch.  Whereas my Regular is made by Midori re-branded as Traveler’s Notebook purchased from The Journal Shop in May 2016 and right from the beginning it was dull, susceptible to dinks and scratches and felt slightly rougher and less pliable than my Passport.  I thought it was an aging thing but now I’ve used my Regular daily for the last 3 months and the oils of my hands not even providing any kind of patina to the leather yet,  I think I prefer the Regular though – I love the imperfections.  Does anyone else have 2 (or more!) notebooks by Midori that have completely different looks and feels that were completely different from day 1?  I know it’s leather and it will always vary etc, but these two are completely different colours and textures etc.

Anyway, no sooner as I’d wondered whether I would be able to utilise my Traveler’s Notebook as a purse, I wondered whether it ought to be in my Passport size so that I could bring that into play once again.

So last night, after doing some digging around, I came across a great series of videos on YouTube I absolutely loved…

Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
I was entranced. Amazed.  I watched the video’s a couple of times, making sense of them and wondering how I could manipulate the system to suit my needs.  I want £1000 in my Emergency Fund.  I want to pay off that pesky little Credit Card and my car.  I want to save 3-6 months expenses.  I want to invest 15% of household bills into a Pension.  I want to pay off my home early. I knew I needed this system in my life and to use it with my Traveler’s Notebook.  I’d seen photographs of tabbed envelopes on Pinterest and I’d been intrigued for some time, however I’d never really looked into it as I used my debit card way too much.

Any that’s the problem…  when I’m throwing my card around, I tend to not track it as well as I should, and before I know it, my funds are cleared out!  The lady in the video mentioned she is a tactile person and I think that I am, too.  Cash is more valuable to me than a card.

I’ve recently changed jobs and have switched from weekly back to monthly pay (thank goodness!) but although I’m feeling relieved I’m back on monthly pay, I was on weekly pay for 2 1/2 years so there is a little adjustment still going on at the moment… to be expected!  However, I love the idea of being able to work on the Dave Ramsey System.

So before I start poking around… Does anyone have any advice on using the Cash Envelope System, and rather, how you set your Traveler’s Notebook up accordingly?

Much Love!

Kel

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Midori Traveler’s Notebook Flip Through

Hi everyone!

It’s been a few months since I moved back into my Traveler’s Notebook… And for a long time I left everything boring and just wrote notes/wrote in a diary/planned on a monthly spread… 

Life got in the way, I changed jobs, I was being a social creature, I didn’t know what I wanted to do with my inserts really… Until last night. I bought my watercolours out to play and fished out some old stamps… And got understatedly creative. 

As anyone that reads my blog regularly will know, I’m a huge huge lover of all things slightly bohemian or indie, so I really think this screams “me!”

Without further ado… Here is my flip through…

The first insert is my purple book (water coloured and stamped) which has my monthly spread, coded passwords and bills info:

Then I have a craft fileThe next booklet is the blue book, which is my journal:

Then the back of the craft file:

The next book is the green book, which has my freestyle notes… Whatever I feel or am want to find out more about goes in here: 

The back of the booklet, and the back of the clear wallet🙂

I know it’s still relatively bare, I just wanted to show how well the covers came out🙂

Cheers!

Kel

Xxx

Back to Midori/Travelers Notebook we go!

Hello everyone!

Perhaps there is something magical about seeing the sun shining after days and days and days of unpredictable weather here in the UK. As we look forward to the summer and slightly warmer weather (I say as I am still tucked under two goose feather and down heavy duvets and wearing a fleecy robe! In MAY!), most Britons begin to daydream of summer adventures, travel, holidays, festivals and yes… The beer garden.

For me, it awakens my whimsical bohemian spirit once again after laying dormant for months, cooped up inside and forced to endure dark, cold early mornings and equally dark, rainy evenings. As much as I adore Autumn and  the opportunity to parade around in knee high and thigh high boots (but only ever over jeans, I’ll have you know!), after the January and February slump I yearn for the long dreamy evenings on the patio drinking a glass of wine or two surrounded by fairy lights and family/friends. I yearn for the early Sunday morning road trips going Antique Shopping in quaint little villages. I yearn to see the sea, to feel sand beneath my toes, to feel the sun on my back, to shut the world out and lose myself to the songs on my iPod.

And most of all, I crave the summer romantic bohemian fashion. The delicate crochet waistcoats, the floaty long dresses, the gold bangles, the ethnic inspired prints, the Indian sandals, the beach hair, the sunkissed tan. The cross body vintage bags… Holding cameras and a journal.

The Travelers Notebook, to me, is the most bohemian journal – it’s so simple yet functional and doesn’t look out of place on a beach in Australia or in a coffee shop in the UK. Travelers Notebooks are so versatile: they hold what YOU want them to hold. The booklets, interchangeable, are able to be personalised as much as you like, through the use of your own doodles, or by use of stamps or stickers or washi tape. The sturdy cover, made of leather; held together by a simple elastic band, ages so perfectly, over time developing a beautiful patina along with scratches… And every scratch tells a story. It’s journey really does merge with your own.

So… I recall two years ago, I purchased my own travelers notebook, made by Ray Blake of the website My Life All In One Place but after a few weeks of using it, I moved back to Filofax because I’d been so used to the system, so used to the ease of being able rip out a page or insert a page should I need to, that I could not seem to get used to the “restrictive” booklet style. 

But I continued to be in awe of them, admiring them. It wasn’t until I was travelling last year that I pulled it out again, and enjoyed the system, the idea of keeping everything together, flight tickets, passports, insurance documentation, currencies, something to note everything about my adventures down and an area to stash momentos ready to incorporate into my journal. 

When I got back home to the UK I immediately hopped onto Amazon and ordered the passport size Midori Travelers Notebook, with a few accessories. I used the system on and off for a good few months, but something about the size bothered me. It was perhaps too small for me.

Fast forward to last Wednesday night, browsing The Journal Shop and realising they provide a discount with your first shop, making the TN cheaper than Amazon, I hit the checkout button faster than I could talk myself out of it. Even though I selected the free delivery (stated up to 7 days), the TN arrived on Friday morning, much to my very happy suprise (I was recovering from an ear infection). And so, I’d like to welcome you to my journey with my new TN…


Have you got a Travelers Notebook yet?

Catch you later!

Kel

Xxx