pen to paper: part 3

penpaper3A few weeks ago (before I had a huge stack of school work to finish), I began the ‘Pen to Paper’ series. I am passionate about writing and wanted to share why and how I journal. Part 1 explained how I got started and my journey of developing how and why I write. Part 2 explained different formats or styles I use when I’m writing and what kind of tone I use. Today I’d like go into detail on the tools I use for journaling.



Full list of pens

  1. Uniball Signo DX .38
  2. Pilot G2 .38
  3. Staetler Fine Tip
  4. Lamy Safari Extra Fine Nib
  5. Delfonics Ballpoint
  6. Le Pen
  7. Pilot Hi Tec C .3
  8. Sharpie Pen

My two current favorites are the Pilot Hi Tec C and Pilot G2.


For my creative journal, I use a black dot grid Rhodia notebook. Bruce introduced me to this notebook, and then we began to carry them in Chirps & Cheers! I snagged this black one a few months ago because I filled my previous creative journal, a thin Rifle Paper Co. journal. The dot grid is perfect for writing, small or large, and doodling how I want to layout an image or post. The elastic closing band keeps loose paper in and can be used diagnoally across the journal to hold a pen on the side too! Also, there is a folder in the back cover, which I have found is perfect for holding little notes from Bruce. In my creative journals I take notes on content ideas, notes of inspiration from my favorite bloggers, quotes, tricks or tips to help me with design, fonts I’ve found and want to use, and colors I love including their RGB codes. Special note to my friend Patty here because when I mentioned I had taken note of my favorite colors she thought I literally had a page where I had written ‘blue, green, red…’ to remind myself of colors I liked. I will always giggle about this, Patty!

For a day planner, I use the Russell + Hazel mini-smartdate system. I love the weekly pages and the the month tabs. I keep filler paper in the back to write notes, journal entries, or random doddles and lettering. I’ve used this system for the last two years, but now that I am no longer in school I may be switching to something new. YAY new planners!


On-the-go, I use a variety of apps that do exactly what I need. In the photo above, I am using Drafts. This app allows you to jot something quickly or write a lengthy post, sync it to iCloud or Dropbox, or send it to any number of my other favorite apps. (I went into more detail here!)

Other apps I use are Day One (which I described in a previous post and Byword. I enjoy using Byword to write the first drafts of my blog posts. It syncs my writing to Dropbox; so no matter where I start writing, I can always pick up where I left off from any one of my Apple devices.

Happy Summer and happy journaling!