We are so excited to share that we have established a new BK-retailer shop in the UK: MiSOpaper! This Love for Analogue Story is an interview with Barbara, curater and owner of MiSOpaper. We hope you enjoy getting to know more about the shop, her background, and her infectious love for all things analogue!
Baum-kuchen: Could you please briefly introduce yourself? Where are you from? What are the many different hats you wear in life?
Barbara: Hi! I’m Barbara and I live in the United Kingdom. I was born and raised in Italy and moved here in 2014. I live in the Essex countryside with my husband and our fluffy cat, Pompom. My main passion in life is running MiSO Paper, which I do single-handedly, making it a very much full time job! When I can I love to travel and learn new languages, my favourite destination by far being Japan. To relax I love drawing and journaling, going to concerts and taking long walks to enjoy the beautiful Essex countryside.
Baum-kuchen: What was your life before MiSOpaper? Were you always involved with analogue artifacts?
Barbara: I was looking for a business name that incorporated both my love for analogue and for Japan. Miso is a Japanese cooking ingredient of course, but in English it takes a double meaning (“me so paper”) which is a statement of my passion for all things analogue.
Baum-kuchen: How did your love for specialty stationery start? Is there a particular story or moment?
Barbara: Before creating MiSO Paper, I worked as an architect for more than decade, firstly in Italy and then in London. I always had a passion for analogue items; Since starting school, the annual event I looked forward to the most was choosing new stationery and planner items for the start of the new school year. In my teenage years my love for Japan grew through reading manga and books by Japanese authors, leading me to discover and fall in love with the quality and uniqueness of Japanese stationery.
Barbara: I think social media and particularly Instagram has made independent designers and small businesses much easier to discover. A key driver for starting MiSO Paper was to bring some of the brands and creators I had been discovering and buying for myself to the UK and European market. This is the whole ethos of MiSO Paper and I’m always searching for new designers and unique products to bring into the shop. I love to find premium items that are not mass produced, thereby helping out independent designers supporting their creative work.
Baum-kuchen: If you were creating a journaling kit for someone, which of your favorite analogue tools would you include?
Barbara: I think I’d start with a Classiky Desk box, which is a great starting item to hold the most used analogue tools. Then a Traveler’s Notebook with blank and grid inserts. The Classiky box would then be filled with Yohaku tapes, MU print-on stickers and various stamps by some of my favourite independent designers.
Baum-kuchen: What do your daily analogue must-haves look like?
Baum-kuchen: What is your favorite part of your job/role and MiSOpaper?
Barbara: My Hobonichi Cousin for daily journaling, Hobonichi Weeks for work and life planning and Traveler’s Notebook for memory keeping. I like to write small snippets about my day in my Traveler’s Notebook, which I then use as a reminder when I have time to journal more in the Cousin, usually a few evenings per week. My favourite pens are the Twsbi Eco fountain pen extra fine and Uni Jetstream ballpoint pen in 0.38mm. I have a soft spot for very fine nibs/tips.
Baum-kuchen: If you could create any dream analogue item what would it be?
Barbara: The thing I love the most about my job is connecting with fellow analogue lovers and sharing my passion. When I receive messages from customers letting me know how receiving their order made their day, it makes me so happy. Stationery and analogue items bring me great happiness and it’s fulfilling to know that I’m helping other people feel the same. Spreading a little happiness around, one stationery item at a time!
Baum-kuchen: Where do you see yourself and Misopaper in the distant future?
Barbara: I’d love to be able to stick to using one journal only, an EDC (Every Day Carry) where to journal and plan my life/work, all in one book. I wish there was a Traveler’s Notebook size planner containing the whole year in one volume with monthly, weekly and daily pages, on Tomoe River Paper, that would be my ultimate dream!
Barbara: I’m hoping to keep bringing more hard-to-find, high quality analogue items to the shop. I’d like to become a main point of reference for analogue lovers, a place where they know they can find their must-haves and also discover the latest unique products.
Baum-kuchen: What are your words of wisdom/timeless quote you see yourself referring back to?
"To live a creative life, we must lose our fear of being wrong.” - Joseph Chilton Pearce
“It’s never too late to be whoever you want to be.” - F. Scott Fitzgerald
Where to find Barbara:
Bk Artifacts featured: