There’s nothing quite like enthusiastically beginning a project only to discover that you don't have the needed tools at hand. Your journaling practice is no different; you'll enjoy the experience more fully if you have the best resources selected and ready to use.
At its simplest, journaling requires only pen and paper, and strictly speaking, any will do. However, investing in a few quality tools will boost your happiness with the project and help your journal age better over time as well.
You’ll want to select your paper based upon the scope of your project, while also taking into consideration your writing implements (more on that below). For most uses, you’ll want a paper weight of 80gsm (grams per square meter) or higher. Be sure to find something that is acid free, sometimes also labeled “archival quality.” This will prevent your paper from yellowing and becoming brittle with age.
Some excellent options are available on Amazon, such as Rhodia’s Webnotebook. You’ll find that Rhodia paper is gorgeously smooth, a bright and clean white.
Also reliable is the dot-grid Rhodiarama which is available in a wide range of colors. The dot grid format is excellent for combining traditional writing with the option to draw, doodle, or create separate sections on a page. Both options from Rhodia come in 90gsm, an ideal paper weight for these purposes.
The Leuchtturm1917 and Scribbles That Matter notebooks are a popular choice, especially in the bullet journaling community. They're available in a wide array of colors and paper layouts, and include the added benefit of numbered pages and a table of contents at the front.
If you’re more interested in an artist notebook, the Canson ONE Hardbound Art Book is an excellent value. The pure white paper is 100gsm and acid free, a perfect blank slate for your creativity.
Finally, Taroko Design's Tomoe River notebooks are highly favored in the writing community. This Japanese paper comes in both cream and white, and a variety of page styles, and is regarded as one of best papers available anywhere for fountain pen writing.
Orchid Paper is fountain pen friendly as well, and with its extra thickness, it's suitable also for art journaling, including light washes of watercolor.
Now we come to pens. And chances are, if you’ve set your mind to journaling, you've realized that no two pens are created equal, and quite possibly you already have your own list of favorites. We’ll touch on various styles and their individual benefits.
Using an art pen is an affordable place to begin. Faber-Castell’s PITT Artist Pensare readily available and very affordable. These pens come in a variety of tip sizes and colors, so you can select the pen that best suits your personality and needs.
Sakura’s Pigma Micron Pens are another artist and journaling favorite. In addition to Amazon, you can easily find these pens at your local arts and crafts store.
If you’re ready to invest a tad more effort, it’s time to investigate the world of fountain pens. Here you have the option to choose a pen you love, and from there on out, fill it with an infinite variety of inks.
The options are endless in the world of fountain pens, as one quickly discovers with a visit to Goulet Pens. In addition to offering an extremely well stocked online shop, Brian Goulet has produced a video tutorial series designed especially for the fountain pen novice.
An ideal and affordable place to begin with fountain pens is the Pilot Metropolitan. These pens are easy for fountain pen beginners to use and come in a wide variety of nib sizes and fun body colors.
For a more traditional-looking pen, comfortable to hold and appropriate for use in any professional setting, the TWSBI Classic is an outstanding option.
There's an infinite variety of inks available to fill your new fountain pen, and the absolute best way to get started is with ink samples. Once you've tried a few colors and brands, you'll be much better equipped to knowledgeably invest in full bottles.
Remember that, even with the endless options available for writing tools, all you truly need for a beneficial journaling practice is paper and pen. So experiment to find the ones that work best for you, sit yourself down, and begin to write.
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A love of reading is often discovered at a young age and is a tremendous asset for anyone; readers have an entire world available to them that non-readers don’t benefit from. They can learn skills, entertain themselves, glean wisdom from history, and find inspiration for self-improvement using nothing but a (free!) public library. Yet sometimes, though children can read, they see it more as required work than a privilege and miss out on the joy that the habit can bring.