Sainsbury’s Mini Haul

Sainsbury’s often have a few bits of stationary on sale. They seem to bring a new range of notebooks out every few months, and then sell the old ones off cheap, even though they’re the same as the new ones just a different design or colour.


So I picked up a three pack of A5 sized cardboardy covered thin notebooks for a pittance.The spine has contrasting coloured stitching to hold the pages in. Decent paper inside, not too thick so ideal for general notetaking etc.


I also picked up a couple of mechanical pencils. Not something I use really but they were super cheap. Not being able to decide between the 0.7 or 0.5, I decided to get both.

So, as always, it’s worth keeping ’em peeled in such places!

Sticky Keys

The Imperial Good Companion Model T

Keys Stuck Up – The Problem

I’d not used the typewriter for a while. I wanted to type an address label. But some of the keys on the left side wouldn’t press when I tapped them. I had to give them a good thump with my finger. Once freed they moved OK, but when left for a short while to problem returned.

So I did the usual, oiled everything. It didn’t help so I left it alone to see if the oil would seep in. It didn’t. So I summised the typewriter was gunked up, so I got some meths and cleaned around the sticky hammers. This seemed to work initially, but then it became apparent it hadn’t really.

Keys stuck Up – The Resolution

Then I realised the problem. It was where the hammers rested. The strip of foam wrapped in a black cloth tape had become sticky. So the hammers were stuck down which explained why they freed off with use, but stuck again when left.

Luckily the strip is designed to be easily removed, it just sits in a curved channel so it lifted out. I removed the tape and re-covered it with some tape I already had. The camouflage tape matches the green of the typewriter nicely I think, although you never really notice it.

So it’s now fixed and back to full working order!

Filofax diary insert vs WHSmith

Happy New Year! (Yeh, whatever!)

So this year I saved a whole pound (that’s the currency, not the weight) by buying WHSmith’s own Filofax personal week on two pages diary refill. The official Filofax insert is £9.20 in WHSmith and their own is £7, cleverly undercutting them there. But in Tesco, the official diary inserts are £8, so there’s not much in it, and no doubt you can get them cheaper elsewhere in store, and of course they’re cheaper online too if you can get free postage.


So what’s the difference? The only real difference is the one you can see above. Left is the Filofax insert, right is the WHSmith one. The Filofax pages have larger weekdays and then less space for the weekend, which makes sense if you use the diary mainly for work and don’t work much at weekends. In the WHSmith diary all the days have the same amount of space given to them, and there’s also an extra space after Sunday which you could use for other notes or general reminders.

I use my Filofax for noting down personal stuff like reminders, holidays and I also use it as a mini journal, just noting down anything I’ve done that day, so the extra space at weekends is most welcome, so I think I’ll stick the the WHSmith diary inserts from now on as they suit my needs better.

Legami A4 Plain Notebook

Another TKMaxx special from some time ago. It’s a hard cover with a soft feel to it. There’s an elastic closure to keep it, er, closed, as well as bookmark ribbon and elastic pen loop.


The 192 pages are nice quality paper. Rear pocket inside cover? Check!


It’s one of those books you could just scribble in but the overall quality makes you want to save it for something special, and hence it goes unused so far.


One thing that has started to annoy me since I’ve been collecting notebooks is those “inspirational messages” either on the cover or, in this case, inside the cover. “I have a dream”, yeh whatever. Maybe I don’t, maybe I just want to doodle, or maybe I do and it involves sitting on my arse playing GTA 5 all day whilst drinking tea and eating cheese based snacks. Don’t try to second guess me or assume I have any kind of emotional depth notebook, you’re way off!

Le Cahier

So one day, I was definitely *not* going to buy a notebook. I had enough, so no buying. Then I saw this.


I’ve seen other ‘Le Cahier’ notebooks before, but never one like this. Allow me to give you the tour.


Hardback, about the size of an old novel and about as thick, canvas covered, it feels like a special thing. So special I had it a year before I removed the shrinkwrap.


Inside there’s an inscription. Google translates it as “my daily life these days”, which you could reinterpret several ways I guess. “My daily journal”, “These are the days of my life”, or is that a song by Queen?


There’s a bookmark ribbon, simple lined pages and no rear pocket.

It’s the kind of book you want to keep for best, it’s not a ‘rough book’, or a ‘notes book’ or a ‘work in progress book’, no, this is for neatly written journal entries, or poems, or the first neat draft of your book. So maybe it’ll get used one day. Maybe.

What I Did Buy

So here’s what I did buy that day

It’s a notepad that not only looks like a 7″ single, but it’s also the same size, 7×7 inches!

There’s also a cut out in the center just like a real sleeve. And lifting the sleeve up reveals…

A second cover with a record print!

Even the spine is made to look like a small pile of singles.

Inside we have about 100 plain sheets of high quality tear out paper that’s glued at the top.
A splendid find and just £2.99!

What I Didn’t Buy Today

I bought one of 3 items today in TKMaxx. This might be a cheaper way of running this blog actually, but not as much fun for everyone. Anyway, I found three interesting items, here are the two I didn’t buy and explain why as we go along.

So this first find is a personal size Filofax. The cover is a weird feeling rubber, the grippy kind that will attract dirt and become grubby in no time. It folds over like the Domino Filofaxes. There was no price on it and I didn’t like the feel of the cover so I passed.

Travel Notebook 
This is a bit more interesting, it’s a notebook with a pad inside, pen loop and compartments to put tickets in etc. 


It’s a shame the notepad is bound at the top as its not really a travel journal, more of a thing to keep bits in and make notes, lists or write down your social media details to pass to cute boys/girls or however the kids of today communicate when not using Tinder.

I passed on this as it’s a bit girly colour wise, and I didn’t like the notepad.
So there you go, my next post will be about what I did buy, so stay tuned. Or in the style of click bait links, ‘He passed on these two purchases, what he did buy will make you want one more than your own life!’ Which it won’t of course.