It’s been almost a year since I threw myself into the A5 size planner life. At the time, I thought I had a pretty solid idea of how I’d kick off this system based around the T.S.L. Leather Zip Organizer (Blue) story, but how close did reality come to expectations? Let’s take it easy with a quick check-in and some photos on a brightly-lit desk.
In 2021, I wrote:
Here’s what my setup looks like at the moment. I’ve got a few pens on the left. Just below the pens, the passport-sized pocket fits my vaccine card and, well, a passport.
And here’s the setup today:
As planned, I did move into the MD Light Monthly you see tucked into the right hand pocket for my 2022 planning—and really enjoy it! Nowadays my pens are housed in a separate Yuruliku pouch, so their former pocket on the left usually holds only a few papers. Right now I’ve got a vintage San Francisco postcard tucked in there, for its cheerful colors as well as the motivation to finish a project related to the city that I’m working on. I also keep a TN ruler insert on call in larger pocket behind. This is what I use to draw straight lines to divide up the weekly spreads in my planner. The vaccine card has moved to a different small wallet, but the special “passport” stays.
[The MD Monthly Light] has a nice lightweight calendar, so I can continue my daily drawings if I want to. Of course, what really intrigues me is that luxurious field of white surrounding the grid. So clean, so spacious.
Although I have indeed continued doodling in the calendar boxes, it’s not at all daily—often I scribble down a memory or two only at the very end of the month. I began the year very determined to keep this area clean and restrained, making very few marks on the already-lovely MD paper. And yet, slowly but surely, with each turn of the calendar spread page, my horror vacuii crept back in. Now my calendars are once again festooned with color and line. This isn’t a bad thing, I’m just amused by how much effort it takes for me to not fill any given piece of paper. At least I haven’t drawn entire comics in that space yet. Nobody hold their breath, though. There’s still four months left in the year.
Before installing the MD, I was trying out a Perpanep Textured notebook. How did that go?
I’ll also be using a Perpanep book as a catch-all notebook for business, drafting, housekeeping and planning…the “Zarazara” should display the shadings and variations of the [fountain pen ink] colors beautifully. Not to mention the anticipated scritch scratch of the pen nib on the paper.
All of this turned out to be true. I have a hard time using normal pens even for the most mundane of lists in here now…the look and sound of the fountain pen ink is too satisfying.
Perpanep’s A5 size, so if you tuck the back cover into the right hand pocket of the organizer, it’ll just barely fit. The corners do bump into the zipper a little, but that doesn’t bother me.
False. It bothered me greatly. I was relieved to switch the Perpanep out for the much slimmer MD Light. I’ve heard that the newer versions of this leather organizer are a bit larger, so fitting planners inside is not such a tight squeeze anymore. Still, I’ve become attached to this one. I wouldn’t trade it away.
Overall, this year I feel a tension between really liking the spacious A5 size (and especially using the MD Light!), but still wanting to consolidate more notebooks/functions so I only have to flip through one or two places at a time. The dive into A5 has been fun, yet slippery—I can’t quite predict how the setup will evolve next. That’s fine, though. The fun of it is jumping again.
Text and photos by: A.C. Esguerra
Where to find A.C. : instagram @blueludebar
Read other stories by A.C. : Here
Bk Artifacts Featured:
- The Superior Labor Zip Organizer
- MD Monthly Light
- Yuruliku Flat Pen Case
- Perpanep Notebook / Textured A5
- Uni-Ball One / Gel Pen