We understand technology has made the humble pen and pad unnecessary. You have apps and sites to handle all your to-dos and reminders. Should you choose, you could go the rest of your life without ever scribbling something down. Our opinion? Don’t. Writing things down not only helps you remember them better, but it gives you a hard copy unconcerned with battery level and WiFi access. But don’t just grab some printer paper and a Bic, get a decent notebook and a writing instrument that will stand the test of time. Here are some we suggest.


Tanner Goods Memori Pen

We’ve long trusted Tanner Goods when it comes to leather. Belts. Wallets. Dog leashes. They’ve been churning out durable, attractive leather goods for years. Recently, however, they’ve delved into new products for your EDC that aren’t crafted from leather but still boast the same Tanner Goods quality. Everything they make will stand the test of time. That’s why we love the Memori Pen. Built from Brass, the Memori Pen is an everyday object meant to last every day. It takes a number of cartridges and is ready to serve you for years to come. Pick one up now and you’ll never need another pen.



The Panobook is a notebook actually designed for your desk. Okay, that doesn’t sound that crazy, but think about all the places other notebooks must operate—in your hand, tucked in a bag, cradled against your forearm while you’re squished in a train. With a panoramic design, Panobook site nicely on your desk, mimicking the look of your keyboard. Visually, it fits. You can use it that way when you need to draw action plans, storyboards, or just doodle. When you need to make a list, flip Panobook around and you have a large, reporter-style notebook at the ready. It’s as much a desk accessory as it is a notebook.


Felix Gray Computer Glasses

PARTNER Working in front of a computer all day is doing a number on your eyes. Felix Gray wants to alleviate the strain and the headaches that come with looking at a screen, and they want to do it with a pair of good-looking glasses. Yup, all you need is a pair of attractive glasses and you’ll start feeling better. Felix Gray non-Rx eyewear is designed to combat digital eye strain. Thanks to proprietary blue light filters, the lenses filter out most of the harmful wavelengths coming from your computer or your phone and even eliminate glare. No ugly yellow coating and no distorting the colors you’re seeing. The lenses are complemented by handcrafted Italian acetate frames that feel light and are sure to turn heads.


Baron Fig Work/Play II

After launching with some clean notebooks, recognizable by their pale blue covers and bright yellow bookmarks, Baron Fig quickly expanded their line to include other types of pads. One of the more recent additions is the Work/Play II, a notebook that boasts a dot grid on the left and a blank page on the right. It’s the perfect blend for anyone whose job requires sketching along with note-taking. Plus, like the classic Baron Fig Confidant notebook, the Work/Play II opens flat and offers 12 perforated pages, which are both positives in our book.


Cross Peerless TrackR Quartz Blue Ballpoint Pen

Cross was the fancy pen brand before you knew anything about fancy pens, the brand you saw in that pen store in the mall that sold wooden bookends and desktop magnifying glasses. Well, Cross has evolved since that time. The Peerless TrackR Quartz Blue Ballpoint Pen is a stunning writing instrument that also happens to be the world’s first trackable pen. Yup, the pen connects via Bluetooth so you never lose track of it. Hey, if you’re going to drop the cash on a seriously nice pen, you probably don’t want to lose it in a week. And when you consider how many pens you’ve lost in your life, well, it just makes sense.


Leuchtturm1917 Medium Sized Hardcover Notebook

The Leuchtturm1917 tagline is “Details make all the difference.” Guess what? They’re right. This notebook gets everything correct, and that’s the reason it’s long been our go-to. It opens flat, comes with stickers for labeling and archiving, has numbered pages and a blank table of contents so you can stay organized, and it offers acid-free and ink-proof paper. You can choose from lined (our preference), blank, a bullet journal, and other options, all with the same next-level quality.


Lamy aion

Lamy has long been known as the brand that makes fountain pens for the masses. Whether you want a fountain pen or not, the new Lamy aion is worth taking a look at. With an aluminum body that boasts an attractive brushed finish, the glossy nib and clip shine on the writing instrument designed by Jasper Morrison. Available as either a fountain pen, ballpoint pen, or rollerball, the Lamy aion ships this month worldwide. If you’re looking for a writing device that blends sophistication with industrial design, you’d be hard-pressed to do better.


Write Notepads & Co. Pocket Ledger

A reporter’s notebook is the perfect desktop note-taking pad. Why? Well, because it’s top-bound, it flips open and stays open on your desk. Instead of using one hand to keep your notebook unfurled, you can see your notes at a glance at all times. A good option is this Pocket Ledger from Write Notepads & Co. Made in Baltimore, Maryland, the notebook contains 120 pages, a durable rubber band closure to keep loose sheets tucked inside, and paper that has been developed to perform best with most writing instruments. Keep it on your desk and toss it in your breast pocket when the whistle sounds.


Ti Pocket Pro

How many times have you needed to write something down only to find you didn’t have a pen on you? It’s happened to us enough that we’ve resigned to keeping a pocket-sized writing device with us at all times. And if you’re going to carry around a pen, might as well make it one as attractive and durable as the Ti Pocket Pro. The clever pen telescopes to accept over 80 different refills. That means no more guessing if it’s the right refill for your pen or not. Available in Stonewashed Titanium or Antique Black.


First Draft Co. Hardcover Notebook

With a braided elastic band that holds your notebook closed and your pencil tight, the Hardcover Notebook from upstart First Draft Co. ensures you’re never without a writing instrument. The 224-page notebook is hardbound and boasts a cloth cover that feels good in the hand. Lay flat binding and thick paper just add to the luxurious touches. Made in the USA and ready to handle all your meeting notes.


Rocketbook Wave Smart Notebook

We can safely say this is the only notebook that requires your break room to have a microwave. Yup, a microwave. Here’s how it works. Write your notes in the Rocketbook Wave and use the company’s app to send your notes to Google Drive, Dropbox, or another cloud-based storage service. Then, when you’re ready to acquire some clean pages, simply pop this bad boy in the microwave and zap it. You can microwave it five times, so you’re, in a sense, getting five notebooks in one. Just hope your coworkers weren’t reheating fish before you go to erase your pages.


Word. BYOB 10-Pack

We started Word. to help organize our life. From to-do lists to packing lists, the pocket notebooks are designed to keep tabs on all you need to do. That means they’re perfect for the litany of assignments any career brings. Why not bring a few back to the office this fall? Our BYOB 10-Pack allows you to select only the covers you love most. Drop one in your back pocket, in your travel bag, and in your desk drawer, and always have reinforcements on hand.

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