The Boston Binder by Franklin Covey

30 November 2012

Now, before anyone bombards me with any questions, please, let me explain myself...

It's not what you think. I am not cheating on my Filofax. You see, a friend of mine recently purchased this compact sized, Boston Binder from Franklin Covey as a late birthday present for herself but, upon receiving it, decided it didn't meet her expectations. Rather than go through the ordeal of returning it, she figured she'd hold onto it in hopes of finding some use for it.

Unless, you want to, you know, give her a go?, she asks me over the phone one day. And, if you end up liking her, I can sell her to you for cheap. I know how much you like planners. Hmm, tempting. I sometimes hate that she knows me so well!

I thought, well, my friend needs my help. What kind of friend would I be if I turned her down? And haven't I always wanted a green planner? Besides, it's not like I've committed to buying the planner from her (yet). I was merely "giving her a go".

Anyway, after much deliberation, I soon had the Boston binder in my hands. Want to know my initial thought? "Eh, she's...A'IGHT."

This is a compact sized binder which would be equivalent to Filofax's personal size. However, FC binders run much wider than the Filofax as shown in the photo below. Much too wide for my liking, actually. However, this might be a good "in-between" as far as planner sizes go for some people. Not too big, not too small.

Side-by-side with Ms. Holborn. I have failed yet again to capture the Boston's true color which is a shade darker than pictured.

You'd think that, during the months since I've switched over from Franklin Covey to a Filofax, the people at FC would do something different with their binders. But, no. Although pretty in its overall appearance, the Boston binder is just another typical FC planner to me. Nothing to really "ooh" and "aah" about (and, trust me, I've seen/used a lot of FC planners in my day).

The Bostons color is more of a hunter green as opposed to the Emerald shade depicted on the Franklin Covey website (and in my photos). The leather is pebbled but smooth to the touch. The buckle clasp detail on the snap closure is nice (and adjustable!) but, again, nothing new there, and it has no problem laying flat when opened. This binder boasts 1 1/8" rings and inside there are many pockets and slots. But, what I found most interesting, was the two (TWO!), large pen loops. So much so that I spent a good portion of my time with her, trying out different sized pens in each, in and out, in and out (get your mind out of the gutter, now!) and was amazed at how spacious the pen loops were. The lack of a decent sized pen loop is (*looks over shoulder*), I'm afraid to say this should I hurt anyone's feelings, (*whispering*) is probably the one thing the Holborn is missing. Question is, were these pen loops enough to win me over?

Front Interior

Back Interior

Well, after more planner petting, poking, and prodding, I came to two conclusions: 1.) there really isn't much that I miss about the FC binders and 2.) I am very much still in love with my Filofax.

The Boston binder will be going back to my friend. If this is the binder for you, you should know that it also comes in FC's classic size (similar to Filofax's A5) and in the colors black, and teal. I, on the other hand, will continue planning my days with my beloved, Ms. Holborn and, perhaps, still keep an eye out for a green planner. Maybe Ms. Holborn won't mind a little Ménage à trois, yes?


22 November 2012

To those who are celebrating this day of thanks, here's a big


From my family to yours, here's wishing your day be filled with lots of love, happiness, and tons of yummy goodness!

A Week With Ms. Holborn

16 November 2012

It's Friday here, yet again. I hope everyone had a splendid week!

I've finally moved into my new personal Holborn and I have to say, I am loving everything about her. She has this sophisticated beauty that no planner I've ever owned can match. I smile every time I open her up and see that all my things--cards, stubs, random papers--all have a proper place of their own inside of all of the little compartments. There are so many pockets that I haven't even used all of them!

Anyway, I was going to do a post loaded with photos on my current set-up but, instead, I've decided to just do a summarize of what's inside. However, you could still see plenty of Ms. Holborn on my Flickr page, as well as a more detailed description as to how I've put everything together.

My handsome Milk Monster :)

Upon opening my Filofax, I am greeted by the ever-so-charming Milk Monster. Isn't he adorable? I put this little collage together many planners ago because I wanted to see something bright and cheerful when I began planning my days. Nothing makes me more happy than seeing my sons smiling face.

Since switching over to a Filofax, I've been trying to familiarize myself with all of the inserts. For the longest time, I couldn't decide on which diary format I wanted to use. I originally started with a Week On Two Pages (because it's what I'm used to and because it's what my Filofax came with). But, I also liked the idea of the Week Per Page set up and the Week Per Page + Notes and decided to try them both. I am now back to the Week On Two Pages.

Weekly section with Week On Two Pages + flyleaf "dashboard" (for random notes/stickies).

Like every one else, I tried making my own dividers. I may have forgotten that I'm a bit of a perfectionist and was frustrated that they weren't coming out as nice as I wanted them to be. So, I decided to go with these dividers I found at a local Japanese shop. They are made of a thin plastic material which I prefer over the paper ones. They're simple and clean looking, easy to set up, and (hopefully) long lasting. I like them so much that I purchased several of them just in case.

My sections are as follows: Monthly, Weekly, Get Done (To-do's), Reference (for important information/lists), Blogs (for ideas and drafts), and Notes (where note paper and other miscellany are filed).

Love these dividers! Wish they came in other colors.

Unlike the colorful Franklin Covey inserts that I'm used to, Filofax inserts are quite, well, boring. But, this means I get to use all sorts of fun stickers and pretty washi tape (washi tape!) to customize my planner as I please. FUN! However, this also means I'm going broke from buying said fun stickers and pretty washi tape. Not so fun.

I keep all of my plastic inserts (zip pocket, card holder, etc.) at the very back. Like I said, I haven't found use for all of Ms. Holborn's pockets yet. The back, inner full-length pocket, outer full-length pocket, and hidden zipper pocket are all empty at the moment. She's not quite fully stuffed yet (I like me a fatty-fat planner!), but that just means there's room for growth.

Empty pockets = room for growth.

Right now, I'm using 3 different writing utensils--a 2mm mechanical pencil which fits perfectly in the Leuchtturm1917 pen loop I've adhered to one of my Day-Timer plastic pocket dividers, a Bic four-in-one, and a Pilot G-2 07 gel pen. I'm no pen expert, and really could care less what I use to write but, I wouldn't mind upgrading to a good multi-pen someday just to avoid the need for these extra pen loops. This, or a magical pen that promises to turn my ugly chicken scratch into penmanship perfection. Whichever comes first. For now, the Leuchtturm will have to do. I also found another nifty little pen loop online which I'll have to share next time.

And, there you have it, folks! As a planner obsessed individual, these "set up" blogs/videos/photos have always been helpful and entertaining for me so, I hope this has been both helpful/entertaining for you. Again, if you're interested, you can see more of my set up here. Until next time, toodles!

First Impressions: Personal Holborn in Wine

09 November 2012

It's here, it's here, it's HERE! My personal Holborn in Wine arrived this week. My face was all aglow upon seeing my husband bring in the mail, with a small, white package tucked under his arm. It took everything in me to refrain from snatching it out of his hands like a mad woman. Thanks, Pens and Leather, for the speedy delivery! I made sure to take my time and savor the moment, rather than tear open the package like I really wanted to. In a matter of seconds, I was down to the final layer of packaging and I could already see the infamous black Filofax box peeking out. Never has a box ever made me so happy!

The notorious "black box" :)

But, it's not the box that I was interested in (although, it is a lovely box). No. It was what was inside it that I had been so patiently waiting for for what seems like years. I was so excited. I hastily slipped off the lid, gently unfolded the tissue paper, and there she was--the lovely Ms. Holborn. I tried my best to capture her true color--which is a really rich shade of red--but, my photos don't do her justice.

So lovely!

My first impressions? She's so PRETTY! I just love the color. Just like wine, it is a deep red with more purple tones as opposed to, say, orange. I'm no color expert though. Just sayin'. The Buffalo leather is soft and much smoother than the Malden which, I noticed, feels grainier (I had to do a side-by-side touch and feel test for this). This is probably due to the fact that the Malden wears all her leather's natural imperfections proudly, whereas the finish of the Holborn appears more polished and lustrous. Grainy still, but just a tad. And, oh the smell! The lovely, new leather smell. Simply yummy. Anyway, what I love the most about this Filofax is the amount of storage it has. I'm more excited about all the things I could stuff into this planner than anything else. The possibilities!

Front pockets.

Pockets, pockets everywhere! Plus, thumbs up to whoever thought of the hidden zip compartment in the very back (which, I've forgotten to take a photo of) and adding an elastic pen loop. Still doesn't make quite a difference as far as being able to fit in a bigger writing utensil in there though. But, good enough. Almost, Filofax, almost.

Back pockets.

I haven't quite moved my things out yet from the Malden where they have been held captive while I waited for Ms. Holborns arrival. We had a brief fling, Malden and I. But, that was because I had no other planner to use and I couldn't just not have a planner, couldn't I? I haven't tested out my new friend yet so, I can't really say but, I have a feeling that I may just have found my One True Filofax. I love everything about this planner so far. I'll give her a go and see.

In Search of "The One": A Filofax ♥ Story

02 November 2012

I've always had a thing for planners/organizers and have experimented with many different brands. For years now, I have been using the Franklin Covey planning system. They have lovely binders, and inserts. Recently though, I've decided to switch over to a Filofax. You know, to try something new.

I am, and have always been, a one planner girl. Like my bags, I might switch it up a bit by color, style, or brand. But, I don't find the need to have a planner for every facet of my life. That just seems too much to handle to me. I find it much more convenient to have everything in one place. So, since finding out about this wonderful world of the Filofax, I have been on the lookout for The One True Filofax. The one planner to trump all planners.

Finding the right planner is like shopping for shoes. You might have to try on several pairs in order to find the perfect pair that fits. In the past several months, I have been through a total of four different Filofax planners already (not too bad, right? Right?). All seemed very promising and lovely in their own way but neither were perfect enough to be The One True Filofax.

Now, I know this concept of "the one" is different for everyone, depending on the organizational needs and personal preference of each individual. So, I'll tell you what my perfect Filofax would be like. Keep in mind that I'm fairly new to this stuff and so my Filofax knowledge might be limited. This is what I found out works best for me so far:

  • She would definitely be a personal sized Filofax. The Pocket and Mini Filos, though adorable, are way too small to meet my needs and the A5, though tempting (I've considered it many, many times), is just way too big.
  • The bigger the rings, the better. Therefore, the Slim and Compact models are simply out of the question.
  • She doesn't necessarily have to be made of real leather but, I do prefer the more softer planners. I think this helps with it being able to lay flat during use which is also a must.
  • I also look at inside features such as the number of pockets, pen loops, etc. Will the planner be able to hold everything I need it to?
  • "Prettiness", although not on top of the list, is also important. I figure a Filofax that's pleasing to the eye gets used more. I love me some color when it comes to my planners.

The very first Filofax I purchased was a Malden in Ochre. She was oh-so soft right out of the box. Just lovely. I couldn't stop touching her. But, after a month or so, I got bored and found myself ogling other planners on YouTube and on other blogs. I wanted something more vibrant. Something that screamed, "Look at me! Open me! USE me! You know you want to!" The Malden was, well, brown and, although I have nothing against the color, I wanted something different. The break up was quick. Straight back into the box she went and into one of my desk drawers. Save for the occasional peek, I haven't touched her since.

My next Filofax affair was with a bold Metropol in Kingfisher Blue. She was a lovely, deep aqua shade of blue. Definitely an eye-catcher. She had a fun little mesh pocket in the back and, not one, but TWO pen loops. However, she was not made of real leather and, although I was aware of this when I purchased her, I didn't realize at the time how much I would miss the leathery softness of the Malden. I especially missed how the leather of my Malden conformed itself around all the papers I stuffed into her whereas the Metropol did not. I had to let her go. Fortunately, I found a wonderful new home for her and made one 10-year-old quite happy. I may have also converted said 10-year-old into a planner lover. At least, I like to think so. You gotta start them off early, right?

My next Filofax was a red Finsbury. She was sassy and all F-U-N. I loved looking at her, sitting atop my desk in all her ruby red glory. I enjoyed planning my days with her and loved buying stuff to make her pretty or, rather, prettier. Her leather was definitely softer than the Metropol but not as soft as the Malden. I really thought she was the one until her clasp broke on me. Perhaps not her fault as I was the one who stuffed her, the poor thing. But, there I was, left with no planner.

Enter the Aston in Orchid, a beautiful purple-y-pinkish color with pretty contrast stitching and (finally!) soft, supple, leather. She looked, felt, and smelled divine. Same set up as my Finsbury with the pockets and all. I remember how excited I was as I transferred all my stuff from the Finsbury to, what I thought at the time, would be my One True Filofax. BUT (there's that "but" again), I just wasn't crazy about the Aston. With all my stuff moved in, I sat there, looking at her and I felt...nothing. There just wasn't that initial spark between owner and planner (planner heads, you know what I'm talking about). That immediate click, it just wasn't there. I wanted it to be there but it just wasn't. The Aston was actually sent right back to Filofax the very next day where I'm sure she'll find another home. Sadly, we were just not meant to be.

By this time I was just about ready to give up. I thought then, should I just go back to the Malden? Was she The One True Filofax that I had been searching for this whole time but just didn't realize it? Should I give up on the Filofax brand altogether and go with another? But where? With Who? I was just about to call it quits until I ran into this video and several similar posts from other blogs.

The Holborn in Wine boasted of beautiful soft buffalo leather, inside and out (much like the Malden). And pockets, pockets galore! And that color! That rich, deep, red color. So it wasn't an "in your face" kind of red like my Finsbury. Nothing loud or vibrant about it but a pretty color nonetheless. I watched this particular video over and over again along with several "what's in my Filofax" videos featuring the Holborn, all of them praising the awesome-ness of this Filofax (all enablers, these people!). Right there and then, my mind was made. I. WANT. THIS. FILOFAX. So, off to Pens and I went (because this is where I was informed they sold it in this particular color), my fingers tap, tap, tapping away on the keyboard, searching for this planner. Pocket, no. Compact, no. A5, Zipped, the Folder...ah-ha! In a matter of seconds, there she was, the Personal sized Holborn in Wine on my computer screen, smiling at me (yes, Filofaxes smile!). Perhaps, she's the one I've been looking for, I thought. The One True Filofax, perfect for me in every way. Or maybe she won't be. Maybe she'll disappoint me like all the others and I'll be back to square one or, worse, be done with Filofax altogether. Well, there was only one way to find out. With a click of my mouse, into the virtual shopping cart she went. I didn't want to miss out on this opportunity. Plus, hello, impulse shopper here! Besides, she was on sale. Surely that's a good sign. At 20% off the retail price plus an extra 10% off using a discount code, perhaps the Holborn and I were meant to be. Here's hoping!

Anyway, I have yet to find out as she has not yet arrived. The Holborn is making her way to me as we speak. I got the shipping confirmation from Pens and Leather this afternoon. I am all geeky excited! I guess we'll soon find out.