Gift: Back to School

The summer-trailing-off-school-ramping-up transition feels less like a calendar event and more like a micro-season. The sun is slowing after its August sprint, the breeze seems wistful and there is a faint trace of pencil dust and assignment-notebook newness in the air. Can you smell it?

We’re not on a school schedule at our house yet, but I feel its pull to get organized, sit up straighter, pay attention and re-stock supplies. As a list maker, that means notebooks. It’s always a thoughtful, useful gift.  So here’s a round up of interesting notebooks for the scribblers, doodlers and list makers in your life.

These trim, glam (and sometimes cheeky) Smythson Wafer Notebooks are a total splurge. As a happy recipient of two of these beauties, I can assure that they make an excellent gift.

Mix and match these perfectly pocket sized journals made by hand from Paper Jayne.

Forget decorating a Trapper Keeper––graduate to making your own notebook. This Japanese Shashiko inspired notebook is one of four DIY Embroidery Pocket Notebook designs from Curious Doodles.

This pretty letterpress spiral notebook from 1canoe2 Letterpress remind me of patterns for grade school friendship bracelets.

You can never have enough classic, versatile Moleskine notebooks. And they’re so reasonable you can pick one up in every bright new color. 

Gift: Calendar

One of my favorite things about the new year is the package that my best pal sends with the latest calendar from Nikki McClure. Yes, I’m aware that this is the electronic age, but I’ll take my address book, hand scribbled to-do lists and Moleskine date book over any electronic devise designed to keep me organized.

More than just a way to mark the days, McClure’s meticulous papercut images and sincere thoughts help shape intentions for the month, or just the moment. Not too long ago we measured, counted out days and consulted charts in the hopes of a baby. McClure’s graceful calendar that year helped ease the disappointments and mark the tiny victories that are inevitably part of the journey to pregnancy. And, when I was successfully pregnant after many a flip of the page, this image appeared:

You just never know what the next month will bring. So, in defiance of the Mayans and their gloomy predictions, I encourage all to pick up something lovely to mark the coming days as a gift to yourself or others.

A few more ideas….

Screen printed desk calendar fromCurious Doodles.

Linda & Harriet‘s sublime letterpress calendar doubles as postcards.

Find a place on the wall for this retro print poster from yumalum.

Discover an intriguing new Polaroid a every day with the Poladarium tear-off calendar.