Ten of the best antique iPads.

My notebook is my baby – sad but true. Yes, I have an organiser and a calendar on my phone, sticky notepads stuck to my laptop screen and a calendar hanging off my mirror (a failed attempt to make myself look at it daily, then realised I don’t look in the mirror daily), but it’s in my little notebook of scribbles that I’ll actually look. I trust it to give me the right information and to dismiss the need for emailing on the go, phoning people or asking where the nearest tube is.

It is my Bible, but my Bible is on its way out.

So, with three naked little pages to go, it’s time to find a successor (notice I do not say replacement) and as each book lasts me about three months and is the gatekeeper to my entire life, I’m happy to invest a bit. I like to make sure that my little square of paper and card is one that I’ll be proud to hoik out of my bag on trains, in meetings, at press views and, most importantly, that’s nice looking enough to make writing an article whilst half-frozen on the District Line an endurable experience.

It’s also got to be hardy, with narrow lines and no fabric – I’m a writer, not making namby pamby lists of shells I found on the beach.

So, on that nautical note, I’ve trawled through the internet and fished up ten of the best – as varied as Birmingham’s seafood markets but without the stench or slimy catcalling. Enjoy!Image

LIFE notebook from Cyd, director of The Sweetest Occassion, on her Keep profile – the pinterest for shopaholics. Simple, inoffensive, and if this were my notebook it would certainly do what it says on the tin.

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Six Continent notebooks from Christian Lacroix for Libretto; it’s a worldwide fashion show in six parts, unfortunately I’m not sure if I’d be able to pick one (after much deliberation having to post a photo of all of them I couldn’t make my mind up!)

They’re enough arty enough to be interesting, yet demure enough to be sophisticated.Image

These Personalised Leather Bound Notebooks from Hope House Press mean that even when you’re snowed under with work 1. you won’t forget your name, and 2. even if you forget your notebook, hopefully a friendly colleague will pick it up for you. They’re soft leather and come in three warm shades, perfect for presents or just to treat yourself!

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I love this cheery book from Peony and Thistle. It makes me far more optimistic about being a very busy bee, and the tough hardback cover is great for writing on the move – no more balancing on one leg whist leaning awkwardly on a lifted up knee!Image

When talking about notebooks, you can’t ignore the big fat elephant in the room…or mole. I’m not much of a moleskine fan, usually thinking of them as good quality but overpriced and dull – but alas, that’s all changed thanks to new series from a brilliant artist who’s inspired me repeatedly over the years. Ricardo Cabral’s cover art is simple and bold, and the books come in packs of two, both filled with neat squared paper like an old maths book – and I for one can remember the obsessive satisfaction gained from carefully fitting words into those squares. Hello tidy new life!

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This steampunk notebook from IdeaObscura of Zazzle can take you out of that grubby tube carriage and up up up into clear blue skies.

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Third of my top three on this page is this upcycled book made with vintage book cover and even interspersed with pages of the original text. Stories and Divinations has all sorts to pick from and each is one of a kind, some for sketching, some for notes but all completely unique.Image

Number two of my top three is this very simple vintage map covered journal: skilfully made by Heather Dewick for Folksy, it’s thick, well bound, has a little page marker (I’m always writing on random pages in a hurry, then losing my notes) and a tough but pretty pastel cover. Each one is made from a real London map so also may come in handy if your iPhone dies, they are rather old maps but still probably not much more unreliable than Googlemaps.

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In first place are these ...I Met And Liked... books from Archie Grand. They’re funny, fresh and super cheap! The eighty styles range from Blondes I Met and Liked to Communists I Met and Liked, but personally the Gallerists, Excuses and Faux Pas pieces are most suited to my topsy turvy life – with Artists I Met and Liked being the clear winner. I do tend to write about artists who seem like genuinely hard working craftsmen, rather than pretentious successes – and I know which of the two I’d rather meet for a drink.

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Finally, I had to put this one in. It’s not the illustrative wonder that I’d usually go for – but it could be the motivating factor I need at times. Perhaps not particularly conducive to the the cool, calm, collected persona I try to portray, but truthful at least!

Right, I really have gotta get done so I’m off! Have a nice day everyone, and write things by pen not printer once in a while –  it’s good for the soul.

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