It’s almost Christmas so I thought I would do a gift guide where I share some of the best stationery items to give as presents. I may have stretched the definition of ‘stationery’ for a few of these items. But I wanted to mention related items which could make good gifts for someone who likes stationery.
If you’re wanting to avoid online shopping this year I would highly recommend you take a look in Paperchase and Cass Art. Local farm shops also seem to be good for stocking interesting stationery items which you don’t normally find on the high street.
The items I’ve mentioned in this post are just what I think would make good gifts. There are a huge number of different stationery items which would make great gifts. I didn’t even try to recommend pens or pencils because that could have been a whole post on its own.
A Christmas Stationery Gift Guide
If you’re buying a gift for a stationery fan you can’t go wrong with a nice notebook. I have written many posts over the years on how much I love the Leuchtturm1917 and MD Paper notebooks. But its almost Christmas so we need to look at something more special.
It’s entirely possible to find notebooks even nicer than the Leuchtturm. The Nunna branded notebooks for example. These are what I would call high-end notebooks, with an A5 notebook costing around £20. However, these are extremely well-made notebooks. With a thick cover and smooth paper which is nice to write on.
We could probably have a whole argument on not gifting nice notebooks because then no one would want to use them. This is an entirely different problem which I can’t fix. But if you want to give a notebook which is more special than a regular A5 notebook this is a great choice. The Nunna notebooks can be found on Amazon and in some Paperchase stores.
Ceramic Paint Pallets
Okay, you might argue that paint palettes aren’t a stationery item. And you would be right. But I want to talk about paint pallets anyway because I recently discovered handmade ceramic paint palettes and fell in love with them.
If you’re buying a gift for someone who loves bullet journaling there is a chance that person might have some artist inclinations. Finding the right paint palette is much harder than you might realise. Most paint palettes sold in art store are made out of plastic. This isn’t great for the environment and depending on the medium you use it will stain the pallet.
For a few years now I’ve been using plates as paint palettes. They are much easier to clean compared to the plastic counterparts. There is also the added advantage that I didn’t have to go out and buy a pallet. No joke, one of the plates I’m currently using was part of a set given to my parents for their wedding 30 years ago.
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So yes, paint palettes can be improvised using whatever you have close to hand. But if you’re wanting to give something really special as a gift you could also look into handmade ceramic paint pallets on Etsy. The actual design of the pallet will depend on the seller.
You can get more traditional palettes with space for paint. Or you could choose something more interesting. My monstera pallet was bought from LikePalitra on Etsy. At £25 they are quite a bit more expensive compared to a plastic paint pallet but they will last far longer.
Kartotek Stationery Packs
Kartotek is a Danish stationery brand which I discovered this year. They make some nice minimally designed stationery. One of my favourite things about Kartotek is their stationery packs. This is a selection of different stationery pieces which one can use.
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These packs have been designed for different needs. I bought a back-to-school set which included a paper pad, notebook, weekly planner and pencil. Most of us aren’t thinking about back to school time right now. But Kartotek also has many other sets to choose from. If you like stationery with a minimal aesthetic this is one company to look at.
If you’re in the UK you may want to make an order sooner rather than later. Orders within the EU pay much less for shipping compared to without.
The Midori Traveller’s Journal is an extremely popular notebook system for travel journaling. The journal is made up of a piece of leather, held together with elastic bands which also hold notebooks in the journal. This means the traveller’s journal will last for years and all you have to do is buy replacement notebooks for the journal.
Midori Traveller’s Journal is slightly more expensive compared to a regular notebook. I bought an A6 journal which cost me around £40. You also have much less choice when it comes to the journal sizes. Currently, you can buy the traveller’s journal in A6 passport size and the original vertical notebook size.
The traveller’s journals are a really lovely gift to give. These journals will last a long time and are made very well. However, like I said you don’t have much choice when it comes to size. If you like the idea of a traveller’s journal its a good idea to check Etsy.
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On Etsy, you will be able to find lots of seller’s making traveller’s journals in many different sizes. You can get journals to fit A5, A6, Field Notes and many other sizes. It is important to research which seller you are buying a traveller’s journal from. Some sellers are better than others. The one I would recommend is EternalLeatherGoods. The thing I love about buying a traveller’s journal on Etsy is that I had far more control over the colours and size of my traveller’s journal.
I could choose the colour of leather and elastic in my traveller’s journal. But I was also able to get something which would fit and A5 notebook with extra space so I could keep multiple notebooks in my traveller’s journal. These tend to cost around the same as the original Midori Traveller’s Journal. But the exact price depends on the seller and custom options you want.
Hogwarts Replica Exercise Book
If you’re buying a present for a Harry Potter fan you can’t go wrong with something from Minalima. I’ve written a whole post on buying gifts for Harry Potter fans but today we’re talking about stationery. MinaLima is a design studio ran by Miraphora Mina And Eduardo Lima. They are probably most well known for being the graphic designers on the Harry Potter films.
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If you’re ever in London you should check out The House of MinaLima where you can buy most of their merchandise like postcards, original prints and books. As well as pencils, pens and other paper goods. MinaLima sells a range of A4-ish notebooks which are designed to look like exercise books from the Potter films.
These notebooks have been well designed with a super smooth paper. They are slightly more expensive at £12.95 for one notebook. But they make a fantastic gift for any stationery obsessed Harry Potter fans in your life.
Nahe Art Case
It may sound a little boring, and something more suited to back-to-school season. But pencil cases are extremely useful and are a great option if you want to give a small gift. Pencil cases seem to be far more interesting now compared to when I was a child. I grew up using a metal tin as a pencil case.
Now you can buy pencil cases in all sorts of different designs and colours. If the person you’re buying for is artistic you could even look into pencil wraps which have been specially designed for art tools.
The one pencil case I am going to recommend is the Nahe Art Case. These can be found in London Graphics Centre and online through Amazon. I love these cases, currently, I own two of them. The Nahe cases come in several different sizes. Starting at A4 they go down to a typical pencil case size.
The larger cases are great for storing documents in as well as any stationery supplies. They have internal pockets which make it easy to keep your stationery items organised. The cases are made out of thick plastic which means they will last a long time. The small pencil case doesn’t fit quite as many pens inside compared to something like my Paperchase pencil case. But it is perfect if you have a small selection of tools you need to carry around with you.
MT Washi Tape Set
I love washi tape and I use it all the time. I’m not one of those people who buys decorative washi and is precious about it. I use washi all the time. It is a fantastic alternative to masking tape. I use it when painting and to hold pages in place. Washi isn’t quite as sticky compared to masking tape. This makes it a great choice if you’re working with paper which is prone to ripping.
There are a huge number of different types of washi tape to choose from. You can buy decorative tapes, tapes with metallic patterns. But I like having a plain coloured tape. And the best brand which makes this type of tape is MT Paper. This company makes a range of decorative tapes as well as plain ones.
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The kind of tape you buy depends on how you will use it. Do you use it to mask areas when painting or as a decoration in your bullet journal? The MT Paper tapes can be bought individually in Cass Art and Paperchase. But you can also buy sets on Amazon. These sets are great because they are made up of different colours and patterns which work together.
365 Day Journal
The 365-day journal is a great introduction to the world of journaling. There are so many different types of 365 journals but they all have the same concept. You have 365 pages, one for every day of the year. Each day you write one or two sentences about your day.
These journals have space for more than one year on a page. This means as you continue to use the journal and fill up the pages you can see what you were doing on the same day over the previous years.
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The number of years these 365 journals last for really just depends on which you choose. You can get 3 or 5-year versions of the same journal. The particular version I recommend is the One Line A Day: 5 Year Memory book. I love this journal, particularly because it’s well made but also quite small. This makes it less intimidating to someone just getting started with memory keeping.
Desk Planner Pad
Desk pads are a great thing if you spend a lot of time working on your computer. Especially if you just have to write stuff down by hand. Desk pads come in all sorts of shapes, sizes and uses. Some are just a place to keep notes, others can be used as a weekly planner. The particular desk pad you choose just depends on what you need.
When it comes to planner pads I love the monthly undated calendars from FranNerd. However, this may be more something you want to keep on a wall instead. Moglea makes a weekly undated pad which is the perfect size to keep right by your hand. However, these can be tricky to find if you’re in the UK.
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Paperchase sells several different desk pads. Both planner styles and plain pads for note-taking. On Amazon, you can find even more desk pads. The A3 ’day of the week pad’ is perfect if you need lots of space for writing.
A stationery subscription box such as Papergang is the perfect gift to give a stationery lover. You can buy a single months subscription, but you can also buy 3 or 12 months subscriptions. This means its a gift which keeps on giving.
There are several different stationery subscription boxes to choose from. If you’re in the UK Papergang is one of the best to choose because it’s based in the UK, which means no extra delivery fees. And at £11 it is relatively cheap.
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I’ve reviewed several Papergang boxes over the last few years. The quality of some boxes has been better than others. But overall Papergang is a great stationery subscription for the price. You get some unique pieces of stationer each month, most of these can’t be bought anywhere else. And if you gift a subscription its nice that it continues long after Christmas is over.
Similarly to the ceramic palette, I don’t know where I would be without ceramic jars and other kitchen wear. We are so lucky now that handmade ceramic kitchenware is becoming fashionable. This means it’s possible to buy mugs and bowls and all sorts of other things unique items.
I tend to buy ceramic jars if I need any sort of storage item for my art supplies. They are much easier to clean and last far longer than the plastic alternatives. There is also the bonus that they have multiple uses. If you buy a ceramic pot it could be used for plants, or to keep food in, or as a place to store pens or paintbrushes. I would highly recommend looking in local shops, usually you can find ceramics made by local artists which is a nice way to support small artists. .
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If you’re looking for ceramic kitchen goods it’s better to shop local. But places like IKEA always have a good selection of kitchenware. My favourite artist who makes handmade jars is Emma McDowall, a Grey’s School of Art graduate who works in Edinburgh making paperweights, vases and all sorts of other items using concrete.
And there we have it. I hope you liked my christmas gift guide for stationery lovers. Eleven examples of stationery items you could give as a gift this Christmas. I know I did get a notebook in there, but I’ve tried to come up with some ideas that are more interesting than just a notebook.
I know that in some cases my definition of stationery has been stretched slightly. But if you know someone who is really into their bullet journal there is a chance they may be artistic too. This means something like the ceramic paint palette could be very useful. You have the added advantage that it’s a practical gift as well as aesthetically pleasing.
But what stationery items are you wishing for this Christmas? Is it something on this list or is there a must-have stationery good that I haven’t included. Let me know in the comments.