It's the first National Stationery Day - to mark its significance in my world I asked some stationery fans to share just why they love stationery....
Sarah Bates; my obsession …
Some people pray. Some exercise or meditate. My Nirvana is the stationery shop. Not one shop in particular – I have even been known to skip with glee in Tesco if they have a particular selection of coloured paperclips in a clear plastic box.
It started at an early age with me cosseting and saving ‘nice pencils’ and writing paper. I still have the Wombles’ writing paper I was bought as a child in pristine condition. I never actually completed my Doodle-art as I wanted to save the glorious felt tips that came with it. Yes, I still have them!
Working life bought more and the stationery cupboard opened its gleaming doors and I was immediately put in charge. From here I collected bright and big post-it notes, wonderful pens, paper clips of all shapes, colours and sizes and folders like I had never seen before. I would pore over the stationery catalogue and plan our orders with military precision.
Outside work, I would trawl stationery shops buying tiny versions of the hordes I had at home – rubbers, highlighters, staplers – you name it, I bought it.
My particular favourites are plain paper journals. I have a box under my bed and at the last count there were 35 unused journals and I still NEED more.
I am a freelance trainer so have plenty of opportunities to buy stationery for delegates to use. However, it makes me twitch when I see them screwing up post-it notes (the cheap ones not the ones ‘for best!). I have a particular purple flip chart pen that I guard with my life. They never get their hands on that!
But I am not alone. There is a small group of my friends who share this obsession. We are like magpies – hording our stash and whispering about what we have when we get together. One friend who I trained with about eight years ago had some gel pens. I cooed over them, held them and stared at them long enough for him to surrender them. It was a touching moment! I still have them (unused) and he still misses them.
Technology may move forward at speed but I will always covet my precious stationery and keep Paperchase in business!