Lilac and Vintage off to Ireland

lilac postal notebook for Cara

I’ve finally completed the lilac Moleskine Messages Postal Notebook featured in my snailmail process video! I did minimal decorating on the front because I wanted the stamps to be the art: beautiful landscapes, birds and my only Pegasus constellation stamp.

lilac postal notebook: inside cover

The first pocket was created with ink and houses vintage ephemera from the Deep South: recipes and garden pages.

lilac postal notebook: page 1 detail

One of the best additions is this old Day Runner page from 1994. I couldn’t believe I found one of these!

lilac postal notebook vintage page detail lilac postal notebook: vintage page detail 2

lilac postal notebook: stamps lilac postal notebook: textured paper lilac postal notebook: envelope + stickers lilac postal notebook: mini postcards lilac postal notebook: signature sketch lilac postal notebook: last pages of vintage ephemera


Moleskine Flip

I actually filmed this a few days ago and forgot to post it! This sketchbook was completed over the course of November and December 2014. ❤ Of course, the feeling of finishing an old notebook and starting a new one is unspeakable, and I’m so excited that this is right in time for the New Year! I’m making a fucktonne of personal changes in 2015, and you’ll be seeing me way more on YouTube. I plan on chronicling my obsessions with notebooks and stationery as well as embracing online communities and vlogging as a self-help tool. I ordered a Kikki K personal planner in gold (been eyeing these since early 2014), and I plan on using it as an art journal, database, therapist, time management tool, wallet, personal assistant, travel journal and commonplace book/brain dump all in one lovely gold package.

A Box Full of Notebooks

Bari's Box of Notebooks

All of my babies were scattered around the house. I honestly wasn’t sure how many I had out of storage and which types. Well, I found this old box I painted Chinese characters on as a child and decided it’d be perfect. Unfortunately, all the notebooks I already had more than filled it, so I already need another box, hoho.

Bari's Box of Notebooks 2

From Midori refills to cheap spiral bound notebooks to a notebook that was purchased for me in Russia, I felt like I was playing Tetris when I stacked them all in there.

Bari's Owl Notebook

I have two leather journals in my collection (aside from my Midori’s cover which is leather of course), and this owl notebook was the first in my collection even before the MTN.

leather covers

I have been eyeing that thick little dark brown book with the circular metal piece in the front for literally about two or three years. I finally picked it up since I had a coupon and have yet to decide what to do with it. I’ll probably hoard it for another year or so. XD I love its form: thick like an old occultist’s grimoire, heavy as a brick and full of nearly square blank pages. I wanna live in this thing. ❤

a book that's a box of its ownlokta journal 1

Above is my notebook of lokta paper with a lokta leaf in its cover. It’s the journal I keep a lot of birding studies in, so I drew birds all over it. In addition to that mountain bluebird, there’s phainopepla and a ruby-throated hummingbird on the back, which are all species I saw in California. It has the most beautiful green accents.

lokta journal 2 fabric covered sketchbookMidori and refills

Of course, here’s my Midori and all of its refills. Obviously, it is well-loved despite not currently in my “in-use” stack.

long, thin watercolor sketchbook with linen cover

I absolutely had to pick this linen-covered watercolor notebook up over the weekend. If it was half its height, I’d be thoroughly unimpressed, but just look at the shape of this thing! The paper feels quite lovely, and it is very portable and light. Below, I had to photograph my Moleskine Japanese album which is over four years old. :X Bahahahahahaha!
Moleskine Japanese album

stone paper notebook

This stone paper notebook was another impulse buy, but I had never heard of stone paper and the notebook was surprisingly cheap. It turns out that stone paper is made from marble waste (or other types of stone waste) which means that not a single plant died for this notebook, not even a lokta plant. XD Because the paper is technically made of rocks, it’s very heavy, but it feels awesome. The paper is creamy smooth and slick as well as waterproof like advertised. It’s also extremely rip resistant, but I’ve yet to test how well certain inks work with it.

stone paper

Blue Parakeet

Of course, I’ve spent the past few days absorbing everything I can about parakeets with occasional visits to observe them at local petstores. Today I saw a beautiful young one that will probably grow up to look like this. ❤ I also discovered some awesome water-based acrylic paint markers that dry super quick and have awesome coverage. Here, I used two to play with a background since I blow at those. This was done in my Moleskine sketchbook. I love this thing so fucking much. Ahem.

blue parakeet


I’m playing around with some ideas for a photograph in my head, and this is my first experiment with it. I plan on hanging the pendulum diagonally in the frame with far better lighting conditions and a strong bokeh in greens for the background.

Currently In-Use Notebooks

The title of this post could also be “A Thinly Veiled Excuse to Post Notebook Porn”. XD

my notebooks in use nov 2014

These are my currently in-use notebooks and sketchbooks. From bottom to top, they are an extra large plain softcover Moleskine, a large silver filigree Paperblanks (lined if you’re curious), large Moleskine sketchbook and a large ruled Moleskine with a delightful purple cover. The Paperblanks and Moleskine sketchbook are the oldest and thus the thickest. ❤

pairs of notebooksEach one has its own loose purpose though I try not to be too hard on myself about organization or any kind of rules whatsoever–for me, these tend to take over and stifle the creative process. Why think about where to write something anyways? It can always be rewritten, cut out, pasted or whatever. These things tend to make my journal feel more alive and tactile anyways. I can’t tell you how much I love the feel of different tapes and stickers and bits of just paper stuff all around my jottings. I could get lost in them just flipping through pages and running my fingers over the words.

open notebooks

Here are all of the lovely notebooks opened up. The leftmost notebook is my Moleskine sketchbook which houses studies, serious art endeavors, color and composition play and experiments for future fine art pieces. I do a fair amount of portrait studies in it too, and this is one in colored pencil, Sakura Gelly Roll and Sharpie of a photograph by the insanely talented Ruby James (known as akimuby on Instagram). Moving clockwise to the top, you can see my Paperblanks open on a sci-fi themed collage. Collage is extremely fascinating to me, but I’m admittedly awful at it so I practice in this journal; it’s a great inspirational warm-up before sketching and writing too. To the rightmost is the extra large softcover Moleskine. This is truly my “art journal”: a place for my brain to dump all its shit in whatever way it sees fit. The pages are big enough to house leaflets and pamphlets and sketches and scribbles, but it’s flexible. Because of the soft cover, I can stuff its back pocket unfairly full. XD And stuff I do. Lastly and in the middle-ish is the large ruled Moleskine with a purple polkadotted cover. Truthfully, where my art journal is a place for me to dump anything (ends up mostly in the form of weird doodles and daily ephemera), this is a place for me to simply write words of any kind. It doesn’t matter if it’s fiction, poetry, prose, notes on parakeets, daily journaling or an idea: my goal is simply to fill this thing with lovely (or not) words. Over the past few years, I’ve been afflicted by a culminating of mental illnesses in which adulthood brought their full onset. Because of this, I’ve found it extremely difficult to simply write as I once did. No longer can I escape the world into my mind’s fantasy land: I have convinced myself that everything is futile and useless in this reality. Such conclusions are the product of years of sad, philosophically-motivated overthinking, so this journal is a therapy tool of sorts to retrain myself into simply enjoying the act of daydreaming, of going places in one’s mind again, to simply let go and wander. ❤

Polkadots and Gemstones for Black Friday

purple Moleskine and necklace

My lover and I have been meaning to hit the Black Friday sales for a couple of years. We finally did it this year and found some awesome deals. This lovely purple polkadotted Moleskine was on sale for 50%, and I got the necklace for free after buying another for a penpal. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg! Even more exciting, we’ve decided to add a parakeet to our little family–now it’s just James, me, Major Tom and Cake. I’m confident that my knowledge of cat psychology will provide success in getting everyone comfortable with each other and of course safe and sound. My past experiences with cats and birds living together was neutral, and those cats did not see me as part of their pack nor did they respect my authority at all. I have a list of precautions and preparations that will last several months so that the parakeet is comfortable around me first and foremost and the cats understand and accept the bird as under my protection (and then as a part of our pack). I’m so happy for this new little friend that I will spoil rotten just like Cake, ahaha. ❤