Hobonichi Techo 2018 9

It’s been extremely quiet on my blog recently as my day job has been keeping me overwhelmingly busy.

To prove that I’m still alive I thought I show you what the postman brought yesterday.

It has (again) been an expensive luxury: after import fees, import handling and shipping has been added the final bill was eye-watering. In the end the cost of the actual diary was nearly exactly 30% of the total cost of getting it from Japan to the UK.


How I use notebooks 8

After listening to last week’s Pen Addict podcast I thought I should really spend some time finding out more about bullet journalling. I have of course heard about it in the past, but never spend the time to learn about it.

The podcast made me think about how I use notebooks now and how I used to use them.

The Kompagnon image from my 2011 blog post

The index in a Field Notes Lunacy memo book

I used to think that I use them like everyone else, but I remember that the post about my Brunnen Kompagnon once had a pingback from a Russian website and when I used Google Translate back then, to see what it is about I saw that they commented that I use a specific system1. I just checked the pingback again, it’s mentioning a system called ‘superfocus’ – well, something else to read up on another day.

Well, here is how I used notebooks today

I usually leave the first page blank so that I can then create an index – I don’t always create the index,though. The picture on the right shows an example. I write what’s on the page and draw a line to the right. I will then mark the corresponding page at that spot to make it easy to access.


In terms of Hobonichi use: I will tick off tasks I have done. If I haven’t done a task I won’t tick it off or I will put a cross in the box. I only cross the date out (in the image below the 10 for 10th January) once all tasks are dealt with, but I do sometimes move tasks to a future date, indicated by putting an arrow to the right in the box.

By the way, I never got an English Hobonichi explanation with my orders, probably because I ordered the ‘avec’ version, which is only available in Japanese. When I ordered the Hobonichi cover on discount, mentioned in my last blog post, I got an English language explanation. Turns out their system is so well designed and intuitive that I used it the right way, i.e. using the space left of the vertical line on a page for appointments and the space on the right for notes (unless the appointments need too much space).


  1. which I wasn’t aware of []

My Harris Tweed Hobonichi Techo cover


Esplanade London's Harris Tweed Hobonichi Techo coverI still carry my Hobonichi Techo in the Galen Leather case, but I thought it would be nice to have a thinner alternative when I don’t want to carry ‘everything’ (phones etc) with me in one pack, so I ordered this Harris Tweed cover.


Too good looking to resist

..well, at least the point about it being thinner is my justification now. The truth is that I couldn’t resist ordering one after I saw how good looking this cover from Esplanade London is when I read Susan M. Pigott’s post at The Pen Addict. I’m not sure why there’s London in the name though, the cover seems to be from Kent. I guess London sounds good, especially for international buyers, but here in the North London doesn’t always conjure up the best associations.

Luckily I got one with a pen loop

Luckily I got one with a pen loop


Luckily Laura, the woman behind these covers, agreed to put a pen loop on the model I ordered. It normally doesn’t come with one.

Not much storage space

Not much storage space

Storage wise the case could be better. The ‘pocket’s on the outside are quite small – even too small for a Kaweco Sport or an Ohto Tasche. I guess you could put an eraser shield or a credit or loyalty card in there.

More storage space on the back, but not enough for a small pen

More storage space on the back, but not enough for a small pen

Harris Tweed

This is actually my third Harris Tweed item. Harris Tweed is wool cloth handwoven by islanders in their homes in the Outer Hebrides, an island chain in the North West of Scotland, about 100 miles North or Ireland1.

The cover and my rucksack/backpack

The cover and the rucksack/backpack


The coat

My first Hrris Tweed item was coat I got in 2014 (for my 40th birthday). Here’s a photo from that time. It was cheap, but the lining was poorly made, so I had to get it redone in my home town, but even with the cost of having the lining redone it was still good value for money. By the way: the little one’s hat was knitted by Shangching.

My second Harris Tweed item was a rucksack / backpack from Timberland. I was very lucky as a Timberland outlet store sold it for around £20, it was originally several times that price.


Esplanade London's Harris Tweed Hobonichi Techo cover


My third Harris Tweed item is this Hobonichi cover. I paid £29 (~$37; €34)  plus shipping. Royal Mail was rather slow and it took a week to arrive, but I finally got it. It is great and since I use the ‘Avec’ version of the Techo, the six months version, using this cover and the Techo makes for a really slim diary carrying solution compared to the leather cover.

Esplanade London's Harris Tweed Hobonichi Techo cover

I was originally tempted by a Scottish Lochcarron cover from Hobonichi, but import fees etc would have made it very expensive, so I’m happy I found this alternative thanks to Susan M. Pigott’s post at The Pen Addict

Esplanade London's Harris Tweed Hobonichi Techo cover

Price and exchange rates: July 2016.

Esplanade London's Harris Tweed Hobonichi Techo cover and my Timberland bag

  1. In the past I had fun looking around these islands on Google Maps. []