While there are many, many reasons to buy paper goods, sometimes you need to get back to the basics, and amass an arsenal of supplies that will take you from list-making to desk-organizing to birthday-card-sending without having to run to the store every five minutes. It’s Everyday Stationery with a twist, and here’s what you need:
- Muji B5 Spiral bound notebook first off, I think B5 is the perfect size paper. It’s large enough to hold a decent amount of notes and information, but small enough that said lists don’t become overwhelming. The cover is in a plain dark charcoal/black, which means you can leave it simple, or personalize it with stickers and labels.
- Dandelion Paperweight I think desk accessories are a nice way to make a bit of a statement on a utilitarian desk. Hafod Grange’s line of botanical globe weights are not only substantial (they’ll get the job done) but très elegant. And yes, gorgeous.
- Uniball Signo Gel Ink Pen I cycle through favorite pens with regularity. My current fave, from Uniball, is comfortable to hold, and its slim .38 nib makes my printing a bit more presentable — even, dare I say, artistic. Which of course, I appreciate.
- Muji B5 White Lined Notepad with PP Cover at £1.25, Muji does it again. I use these notepads for everything: grocery lists, blog ideas, to-do lists, doodles. They were out of stock for months this winter and I anxiously anticipated their return to the shelves so I could run in and stock up.
- Spring Once More Screen-Printed Occasions Card in order for a greeting card to be considered “everyday”, it has to be cool enough to speak to the design-lover in me, yet appeal to a wide range of recipients. I found these Spring Once More typographic cards (available in a range of greetings) last fall at Choosing Keeping, and months later, they are still a favorite.
- MT Washi Tape late to the game, I am now a huge proponent of washi tape. Functional but pretty, I used the tape extensively at Christmas: attaching gift tags to presents, adhering school photos to cards, and for everyday, I use it to turn any paper note into an insta-post-it. I stick to solid colors: pink and grey, to be exact. (suprise!)
- Owl Paper Clip every desk needs a paper clip, and while the ubiquitous gem will do the job, why not choose the slightly quirky — yet still functional — option? These attractive Japanese owl-shaped clips will sate your need for design and keep your tear sheets perfectly organized.
layout and type by jane potrykus. image credits: 1. muji.com 2. matomeno.in 3. jetpens.com 4. muji.com 5. springoncemore.com 6. cutetape.com 7. lion-jimiuki.co.jp
Centrally located, and an easy walk from the Baker Street and Bond Street Tube stations, the charming village of Marylebone could easily be my favorite place in London to explore. At the very least, it is where I choose to spend most of my free time, and thus is the perfect spot to launch a new series: SimplePretty Travel Guides.
In these guides, I’ll be highlighting my favorite spots in a neighborhood or city to give you a flavor of what makes the location special to me.
For a visit to Marylebone, I suggest you:
- La Pâtisserie des Rêves a pastry lover’s dream: madeleines, tartes, éclairs + more displayed under scientific-looking glass cloches like works of art. (43 Marylebone High Street // @LPDR_London)
- La Fromagerie whether you pop-in to shop its well-known cheese room, contemplate your fresh fruit and vegetable options, or simply want to sit and enjoy some charcuterie and a glass of wine, La Fromagerie is the unpretentious foodie’s place to be. (2-6 Moxon Street // @LaFromagerieUK)
- Monocle Cafe a quick stroll from the Lilliputian Monocle Shop (on George Street), I prefer the more open space at the Monocle Cafe. You can peruse (and purchase) the current issue of the magazine over a coffee and cardamom bun, or for something more substantial, come for lunch — I suggest the grilled-cheese sandwich. (18 Chiltern Street)
- Roots & Bulbs cold-pressed juice is hot hot hot right now in London. Roots & Bulbs has a comprehensive (and beautifully packaged) range of juices, but my go-to is their organic chicken + rice meal in a box. So good and good for you. (5 Thayer Street // @Rootsandbulbs)
- The Conran Shop a fantastic array of merchandise, ranging from furniture to tabletop to books to all things gifty. Conran’s buying team knows just what I want + the shop’s displays make me want it all, right now. There’s even a cafe at the back of the shop — don’t miss it! (55-57 Marylebone High Street // @TheConranShop)
- Daunt Books London is home to a bevy of top-notch book shops, and Daunt’s Marylebone location is a great bookshop to get lost in. The building has impressive book-world credentials as the site originally housed Francis Edwards, a antiquarian bookshop (ca. 1912). Daunt’s travel section is extensive, the cookbook section (my favorite) is full of enticing titles, and the shop is well-known for its author events series: I was fortunate enough to catch Adam Gopnik’s talk at Daunt over Thanksgiving 2011. (83 Marylebone High Street // @Dauntbooks)
- Green’s along with bakeries, newsstands will always have a place of honor on any SimplePretty travel guide. Green’s stocks a wide variety of UK and international titles, including a good selection from the US to allay my twinges of homesickness. And bonus: they sell flowers, too. (17 Marylebone High Street)
- Le Labo my entire fragrance wardrobe revolves around Le Labo + its sublime selection of scents. Stop in and stock up on my favorite, Rose 31, or sample the London exclusive fragrance, Poivre 23. (28A Devonshire Street // @lelabofragrances**)
- Mouki Mou if I were to open a boutique, it would look a lot like Mouki Mou. A bit of utilitarian luxe® fashion (from the likes of Crippen, Arts & Science + more) some simple jewelry from 10,000 things, and a smattering of objets and accessories to obsess over. (29 Chiltern Street // @moukimoulondon**)
- Plain English Design Plain English bespoke kitchens are perfection in my book, and the company’s Marylebone showroom is an oasis of design serenity and beauty. I’m kind of embarrassed to admit how often I walk by (and sometimes am brave enough to pop in) and dream of the day when I own a house again, because I want my kitchen to look very Plain English-y. (28 Blandford Street)
- Paddington Street Gardens a bit of green space is always a welcome sight in a city. Paddington Street Gardens graciously welcomes you in for a stroll among the flowers. Or, simply relax and watch the world go by from one of the many benches that line the park. (ps: there are public toilets, too.)
note: “@” addresses denote twitter account names, with the exception of ** which indicates an instagram handle.
map layout, design & type by jane potrykus
My family spent a February holiday weekend in Munich, and while we had a great time walking all over the city, I must confess that in my planning I was most excited about finally having the chance to visit Papierladen, the retail outlet for the utmost in utilitarian luxe® stationery, Carta Pura. Papierladen is a meticulously curated boutique, replete with beautiful papers for gift wrapping, book binding, and writing as well as the perfect minimalist planner, practical-yet-gorgeous office and desk supplies, and an eclectic range of ephemera. The shop packs a lot of visual stimulation into a relatively small space — there is an entire wall devoted to their range of Carta Varese papers, and it commands your attention while you contemplate the merits of the various patterns. Vera Schwamborn, a long-time employee who serves as Carta Pura’s wholesale and public relations liaison, graciously gave me a tour of the shop: after years of exchanging emails, it was lovely to finally meet her in person! After our chat, I spent a bit of time poking through the displays and shelves, carefully considering which little treasures would make the trip home to London. Once I’d decided, my assortment of goodies was carefully wrapped, my bill calculated and documented – on a gorgeous handwritten receipt, naturally — and I was ready to take on Munich, paper souvenirs in hand. A sampling of my “take”, including Carta Pura’s business card and receipt, is pictured below. You’ll notice, glassine envelopes are my weakness at the moment, but I must confess, I also bought some ribbon to add to my ever-growing collection: it was simply too pretty, and special, to pass up.
paper sample packets
some of the treats i brought home
carta pura’s iconic green till
all photos by jane potrykus, with the exception of the green till photo, which is courtesy of (and copyrights to) carta pura. for a set of larger pictures from my visit to carta pura, see my flickr set.
Paperless Post continues to impress with its smart assortment of designs for every greeting-sending occasion. With wedding season fast approaching, I took a gander through their save the date options + picked out a few that, if I were getting married — again — would definitely be on my short list. Love this clever option: send a Paperless save the date, and request your guest’s mailing address via the online reply card! Browse all of the styles, and find your favorite, at paperlesspost.com.
images from paperlesspost.com
Happy April! We spent the weekend in Paris, drinking in the beauty, and the flowers, and the food. (Can’t wait to go back — this was our first visit since moving to London and it needs to become a regular “thing”.)
If you’re in need of a jolt of pretty to start off spring on the right foot, have a click through my favorite photos from Flickr and Instagram during March:
- Watercolor snowdrops
- DSC 08091
- One size fits all.
- Work in progress.
- Letterpressed rabbit liners ….
- oh margarita.
- We are freaking out ….
- A fine night for a @citybike ride to Brooklyn.
Happy Spring! Hope you’re inspired to find and follow your bliss.
photo at top: “poissons d’avril”, a french april 1 tradition i am more than happy to adopt.