Monthly Archives: September 2017

  • 8 Uses for Mark's Travelife Turnclips


    Mark's Tokyo Edge is a Japanese brand - no stranger to Bureau customers. I would even go as far as calling it a classic :)

    Designed and made in Japan, the Mark’s stationery places an emphasis not only on contemporary clean design but also on added functionality.  Mark's notebooks are a hit all year around, diaries season is blooming too, but today I want to talk about something else :) A very small piece of stationery which is so helpful that it deserves it's own blog post. Mark's Travelife Turnclips...

    There many uses for the clips, we found 8 creative and practical ways in which you can use Mark's Travelife Turnclips which you may or may not know about :)

    1. Clip is a clip

    Mark’s Travelife Turn Clips come in pack of 10 with 2 sizes and each size is numbered 1 to 5. They make perfect bookmarks, dividers and memo holders. I tend to use larger size for filing and smaller size for bullet journals. Ordinary application, I know – that’s why I love using some washi tape on these clips to make them my own.

    Click here to see our Washi tape collection


    2. Use with Buckle files as clipboard

    Buckle files are my go to for carrying pads, loose sheets of paper, calligraphy printouts etc. I am currently doing handwriting drills and this one clip means that I can get them done anywhere.

    Click here to see our Buckle file collection

    Mark's Travelife Turn Clips clipboard


    3. Make a pencil loop

    Always forgetting to take your writing tools with you? Clip to the inside cover and slide a pencil snuggly through the gap. Turn clips are probably too small for pens, but if your pen has a clip you can slot that in.

    Mark's Travelife Turn Clips pencil or pen holder


    4. Use as a mini picture holder

    Smaller photos, business cards and postcards can easily sit on your desk with this minimalist holder. Perfect for reminders too.

    Mark's Travelife Turn Clips card or photo holder


    5. Cable organizer

    Another category where Turn Clips and Washi tape team up. This works great, no more crawling under the desk trying to find the right cable. If the cable connection is too big to fit through the arms of the Turn clips you can just take them off, insert the cable and re-install again. After you are done, tag them with Washi tape to remind yourself what is what.

    Mark's Travelife Turn Clips cable management


    6. Headphones tidy

    One of the best hacks :) No more frustrating headphone tangles.

    Mark's Travelife Turn Clips earphone holder


    7. Keeping those crisps fresh

    Super useful in the kitchen. Fold the packet, clip it, done. Works for multiple packets too.

    Mark's Travelife Turn Clips keeping fresh


    8. Fidget toy

    There is something very satisfying about turning these clips and the sound the moving parts make...

    Mark's Travelife Turn Clips fidget toyMark's Travelife Turn Clips fidget toy


    So that’s it, eight interesting ways in which you can use Mark's Travelife Turnclips.  Although I'm sure there are many more out there.

    Let us know your own cool hacks in the comments (^_~)

  • Review: Kanken Laptop Backpack

    kanken laptop backpack - full of space

    Or How Much Weight Can My Fjallraven Kanken 17’ Laptop Backpack Carry?

    The Kanken backpack
    The Kanken backpack

    The new, bigger Kanken has arrived. After careful colour consideration, I went for the classic black and proceeded to put it to vigorous tests.

    Dutifully to its name, the 17" Laptop bag has a big pocket at the back for a laptop. My laptop is a 17-inch (the maximum size it can fit) and it fits perfectly, not being too loose and leaving room for the power cord, as well. The extra padding really gives the protection that I wished for, mostly for my long train rides and packed tube commuting when there is a high likelihood of dings and bumps. Perfect! Now all I need to worry about is trying not to whack the fellow passengers with, what is admittedly, quite a sizeable bag.

    There is a big main pocket and a little zipped pocket in the front where you can store your keys, oysters and bits and bobs. The zippers are study and quite loud so if anyone was trying to open the small pocket even in a loud place you’d be very likely to hear it, which for a Londoner is a plus!

    So, after purchasing my long coveted Kanken, I’ve had some brilliant moments with it! I was caught in an absolutely drenching downpour without an umbrella with my laptop in my bag and obviously my biggest worry was the safety of my laptop. It was completely safe! There was no dampness inside the bag! What a relief!

    Only thing that I have to remember to do, is to pull the zip covers over the zips when it rains because the only part of the bag that isn’t fully waterproof are the zips, unfortunately.

    There is also a good size side-pocket on the side of the bag, which can fit a fairly slim water bottle or even better an umbrella!

    The Laptop Back bags are the only Kankens that have padded shoulder straps to make carrying heavier things like books and a laptop quite comfortable. Thus, the next thing I put to test was the durability of the straps: I managed to stuff the bag full of heavy books - about 35 kg (*see note below!) - and carried it home from the library with minimal discomfort!

    So all in all, I have been very happy in my Fjallraven Kanken, it is now my everyday bag and I can recommend it for anyone who needs a reliable and sturdy bag! I have no doubt that it will last for years to come! If you have a smaller laptop they also come in 15’ size and the Classic Kanken and even a Kanken Mini and if you’re planning to carry heavy stuff in the smaller bags there is also padding for the shoulder straps available to buy separately to maximise the comfort.

    * Weight alert - Armi orginally claimed 35 kilos but this was the source of much debate around the office. She was never able to bring a fully-laden bag in to verify this claim and it has been widely disputed. A figure of more like 20 kilos has been our agreed revised figure based on contents Armi has brought in since. If you have ever tried to carry 20 kilos in a backpack you will know this is not an insignificant weight to haul around!

  • Fountain Pen Nib Widths Guide

    This table provides a guide to the approximate nib widths of the different fountain pen brands we offer. Please note that this is intended as a guide rather than an exact measurement, useful in comparing the relative nib widths across different brands.

    Ultimately, the exact width of the pen stroke will depend on so many factors including the ink and paper used and the style of handwriting applied.

    J Herbin Compact Rollerballx
    TWSBI Extra Finex
    Kaweco Extra Finex
    Lamy Extra Finex
    TWSBI Finex
    Pilot Mediumx
    J Herbin Compact Fountain Penx
    Kaweco Finex
    Caran d'Ache Finex
    TWSBI Mediumx
    Lamy Finex
    J Herbin Plus Fountain Penx
    Kaweco Mediumx
    Lamy Mediumx
    Caran d'Ache Mediumx
    Kaweco Broadx
    Lamy Broadx
    TWSBI Broadx
    Kaweco Double Broadx
  • Q&A: What Is An Undated Diary?

    What is an undated diary?

    What is an undated diary?

    It might seem an odd question but it's not immediately obvious to everyone what an undated diary is. Whilst most people are familiar with a diary that has the days pre-printed for you, an undated diary simply follows the same format but just leaves the dates out. So regardless of whether the layout is a daily diary, weekly or even monthly it will be the same, with days of the week but no dates.

    Example layouts of undated diaries, showing daily, weekly and monthly formats

    What is the point?

    Whilst there is an obvious time-saving benefit to a diary with the dates already printed for you (not to mention the accuracy of having the right dates on the right days), a ‘normal’ diary also has a shelf-life. So your 2018 diary will be of no use until the day it starts, and of no use once the last day has passed. An undated diary frees you from needing to use it in that specific time-frame. So if you have a more relaxed approach to keeping time, or maybe don’t need a diary every week of the year then an undated diary will be ideal.

    What else can an undated diary do?

    Another great use is that if you need a diary outside of diary season then an undated diary is there, ready and waiting. Diary season means that frenzied couple of months towards the end of the year when diaries come and go very quickly, and come early January there’s nothing left. So if you decide in March you need a diary, you might well be waiting a long time.

    You can also let your creative self go free and customise the pages, unrestricted by the printed format already there. In fact, many diaries are so format-heavy that there is little room left to add appointments, but an undated diary tends to be less cluttered. Because it has no dates.

    How do I use one?

    Customise your undated diary
    Customise your undated diary as much as you want to - even use stamps to add the dates

    The quickest and easiest way is to just use a pen and write the dates in as you need them. The longer way is to go crazy with different pens, stamps and washi tape to make something quite unique. And then use it like you would use any diary. But just don’t feel you have to do every day or week. It’s your diary.

    Anything else I need to know?

    One more great advantage is that normally a diary gives you one shot. Mess it up with too many changed appointments or just spill you coffee on that page and you’ve got a problem. Undated diary? No problem as even in the worst case you just tear it out and start that week again.

  • Review - Taroko Breeze Notebook

    Taroko Breeze Notebook with Tomoe River paper


    The Breeze notebook from Taroko is a fairly new addition to our range and one we were very excited to receive. We had an extensive choice of the more basic slimline Taroko books, but we were really in need of a more ‘serious’ book, one that could go head to head with the Moleskine, Leuchtturm and Rhodia notebooks that dominate.

    When the Breeze was announced it seemed like Christmas had come early. So when my trusty Rhodia book ran out last week I grabbed a slightly damaged Breeze book as my daily book (well, the poor wee write-off needed a good home...). This is how I have got on a week in.


    The book scores well because although the cover is minimal, it does at least have a design on it which gives it a lift. The standard range of Taroko books look great but once out of the packet they are unmarked and somehow a bit lacking. The size is appealing - proper A5 and just about the right thickness. The black cover with its silver print is smart, a nice contrast to the usual notebook in this market. That said, it is a fairly understated notebook, nothing too ostentatious.

    Score: 8/10


    The Breeze notebook has a few extras, not as many as some rival notebooks but with some nice little differences up its sleeve. The book comes with numbered pages and an index which makes life so much easier when it comes to organising your notes. No fumbling around looking for that page where you know you wrote something. It also has several ink swatch pages, a nice way to record which ink you are using or for testing out some inks and keeping a proper record. Now this will likely only appeal to an ink-pen user which leads on to its most obvious feature - the Tomoe River paper.

    This Japanese marvel is incredibly thin - just 68gsm - yet handles ink better than almost any paper. This also means you can pack a lot more paper in for less bulk. 183 pages of notes to be precise.

    The book does lack some notable add-ons though, such as a page marker, a closure strap or an inside pocket. It's a shame as these are quite handy features.

    As for the card cover, that really depends on what you want. If you want a hard cover book then it won't work for you, but if you prefer a soft-cover book then this card cover has a nice flexible but stiff cover.

    Score: 7/10

    Taroko Breeze - Index to pages
    Taroko Breeze - Index to pages
    Taroko Breeze - Numbered pages
    Taroko Breeze - Numbered pages
    Taroko Breeze - Pages to record the inks you use
    Taroko Breeze - Pages to record the inks you use


    This is where the Breeze really comes into its own. The paper is a joy to write on, even if you are not using a fountain pen. It is so smooth and works well with a rollerball or even just a ballpoint pen. But with a fountain pen it stands out.

    The dot paper suits me perfectly and they are spot on (pun intended!) and it is a really nice size and weight for a notebook. Sounds a silly thing to say but it works for me.

    Score: 10/10

    Value for money

    At £19.95 it certainly isn't cheap and there are cheaper alternatives from Rhodia and Leuchtturm. It really comes down to the paper as this is the notebook's USP. If the paper tempts you then the book is worth the extra few quid, and if the paper leaves you cold then it isn't likely to have you shelling out that bit extra. Personally I think it is worth it but will

    Score: 8/10


    Overall it has served me well for the first week - it's a pelasure to write in and that is half the fun, surely? If you just want a purely functional notebook then go seek out the cheapest, flimsiest book in a supermarket. Assuming you have come to us looking for that extra bit of quality then this is well worth considering.

    A bit more pricey and lacking a few useful features, but with enough to compensate by way of the paper and the numbered pages.


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