Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Following my dreams with a Smythson Panama notebook.

A girl can never have too many notebooks. Especially not a girl who loves to write as much as I do. 

And whilst I'm often found tapping away on the Notes apps on my iPhone and iPad, nothing beats putting pen to paper. I always have a notebook in my bag, and it's safe to say I get through a fair amount of them. 

I particularly love notebooks for list-making, especially for lists that are going to be a bit more permanent (so probably not your shopping or weekly homework lists.)

A stylish notebook really inspires me to write too. Not only to write, but to dream, to use my imagination, and to think. 

Such has been the case with my latest acquisition, this beauty from Smythson: the Panama notebook.

As one would expect from Smythson, it’s frightfully well-made and oozes quality.

At first I was slightly perplexed by the pale blue shade of the paper, but then I read the story in the back of the notebook – it turns out Smythson notebooks and diaries contain ‘Featherweight’ Paper, copyrighted by Frank Smythson in 1916, who had a vision to create the world’s first practical, lightweight, portable diary.

My notebook is certainly practical, lightweight and portable, so well done, Frank!

Furthermore, Featherweight Paper is half the thickness and weight of normal paper so you can squeeze lots of pages into a slim book. The paper’s also rigorously tested to ensure it can hold ink from a fountain pen. I kinda wish I had a quill to be honest with you.

Featherweight Paper is also pale blue in colour (although I don’t know why.)

Paper aside, the Panama notebooks are bound in crossgrain leather and can even be rolled up or squashed – they improve with age. There’s nothing like the slightly-worn look of a well-loved notebook, is there?

The notebook bindings are handmade with stitched spines and gilt-edged pages, which certainly add a luxurious feel in my opinion.

After the notebook was first launched in 1908, it was affectionately nicknamed ‘the Panama hat of books’ (hence the name) due to its ground-breaking design.

The bright colour certainly fits in with the colour scheme of my life
It's too pretty for random scribbles, and I don't want to get through this notebook quickly so am only going to write down my absolute best musings in it. 

I'm thinking my favourite quotes, inspirational ideas and bucket-lists. It's so beautiful a notebook it deserves only the best notes!

I'm also feeling pressurised to do my best handwriting. God forbid I make a spelling error! *hyperventilates at prospect*

It's the perfect size for keeping in your handbag (lightweight and small but not stupidly so), but even if inspiration strikes and I find myself sans Symthson notebook, I plan to scribble down my brainwave elsewhere and write it up in my notebook of beauty later.

Hopefully, a few years down the line, I'll have a little book full of inspiration, ideas and memories to look back on. 

You know those books of motivational, witty and deep quotes? Well, I plan on turning my beautiful Smythson notebook into something of a personalised one. You never know, maybe it'll be published one day and you'll be able to buy my musings in Waterstones (or download it to your watch/glasses that work as fully-functioning computers.) (It probably won't.)

I personally think writing, taking time to reflect and pausing for a moment to collect your thoughts is super important, and in this fast-paced, technological world in which we live, it's more important than ever. I need to do more of that anyway, and it turns out a pretty notebook can be just the impetus you need. 

Simply taking a few moments to stop and think about your blessings, something you've heard and want to take on board, or a kind gesture you witnessed and want to remember - and noting it down - can be really therapeutic. 

Smythson Panama notebooks have for a long time been popular with distinguished writers, journalists and travellers – the type of people I long to become – so it’s pleasing to read that “over many generations, [Smythson Panama notebooks] have been called a ‘secret social passport’.”

I see my new notebook and can't help but smile. A little reminder to follow your dreams never hurt anyone either.

This is a sponsored post by Smythson - they very kindly offered me my Panama notebook, but I truly love it and the above blog post contains only my honest opinion.


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