Stationery Hauling.

Stationery shopping beats clothes shopping any day. A controversial statement, but it’s guilt-free and chronically underrated. Even a trip to Reads is enough to excite me- colour coded card and matching roller-ball pens are a cheap and rather satisfying thrill.

That said, I’ll take designer stationery over an Aisling notebook any day. It might be too late for the traditional start-of-term shopping trip, but a new notebook might be just the thing to inspire you now that it’s dark and gloomy Autumn. Here are a few of my favorites:

Artbox is a Korean cartoon wonderland selling stationery, plushies and what they call ‘fancy goods’ (this means Moomin-branded tableware  and giant Tim Burton-themed onesies.

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By far the best way to do an Artbox haul is going for lots of little, delightful things that justify the £5 shipping fee (or just wait till your next London trip..). Best of the lot? We’re crushed out on these teensy-tiny animal erasers, pastel ‘chair’ copybooks and the £1.50 Monster notebooks

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Article sell ceramic pug statues, art books and lovely, long-burning haute candles that smell like expensive summer holidays with which I one day plan to fill the summer house I will one day own. One day. But until then, I can afford their stationary.

Look out for the Livework colour coded pens (‘Mayonnaise’, a weird creamy pale shade, is the creepiest and best) and  Paperways notebooks and planners in colours worthy of a Wes Anderson film. They also have a little box of sale items at the back, which are cheap and wonderful.

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Brutally simple and chic, Muji’s notebooks are the best remedy, I find, to a bad day. Buy a notebook, drink some coffee, make a list and start over. They also happen to be the cheapest and best-quality notebooks around- wafer-thin paper, finely ruled and bound in simple brown card for a wholly untroubling €2.

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Urban Outfitters mostly dabble in tacky slogan notebooks and novelty books, but now they’re catering to the 90’s children among us, stocking a range of stickers (though sadly no sticker books to put them in!). So what your teacher never cared enough to cover your homework with gold stars- who cares when you can cover your notebooks now in TINY ADORABLE FELT DOGS???!!! It’s like turning your notes into offline Buzzfeed! Not immature at all…

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Present and Correct have built a substantial, fanatical following through use of Twitter and Facebook. For stationery obsessives bored at work or in college, their photos of luscious designer stationery, some of it vintage, some stocked in their online shop, is a daily temptation. A near-fetishistic attention to detail (the ‘Ephemera’ section features vintage airmail stickers and ticket books from Finland) makes Present and Correct a shop unlike any other. Worth saving up for.

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Photos from Artbox, Muji, Urban Outfitters Present&Correct, Hach Paper & katy&june.

Words by Roisin Kiberd.

Twitter: @RoisinTheMirror 

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