back to school for grown-ups: Modern & Stylish Office Supplies

My obsession with school supplies dates back to…well, the introduction of the trapper keeper?

The Husband learned about my issue in college when I would return from the Student Union Bookstore armed with dozens of pens, highlighters, binders, dividers, and reams of notebook paper in different rule (because sometimes you want to write big and sometimes you want to write small, right?).

With September here, I have decided to once again upgrade my school supplies and my logic is this:  Why should the kids get to have all the fun?  Here is what I am using for my “work” these days.


A vintage coffee cup from my days at the KKG house holds my favorite writing utensils.  The black pens are LePen.  Made in Japan, they are smoother than a fine point sharpie and are a nice substitute for my previous stand-by the bic flair.

The colored pens are Staedtler triplus fineliners, made in Germany.  I also keep my Mont Blanc in the cup.  It was a goodbye gift when I left the world of finance and serves as a reminder of my days there.

The vintage letter opener and scissors were my grandmothers.  Both pieces were made in Germany – the letter opener is Solingen and the scissors are Grasoli.  Just looking at them helps me remember that even the smallest, dullest task of sorting mail can become a beautiful routine.


mon-carnet-de-poche-notebookI love to buy new paper journals.  I have a dresser full of journals and moleskine notebooks.  This Mon Carnet de Poche (translation: My Pocket Notebook) will become my new at home journal (yes, I also have traveling journals – I told you I have issues).


My favorite back-to-school investment from last year is a Campo Marzio Japanese Document case and coordinating pen case.  The document case seems silly, but remember those traveling journals I told you about?  Well, I am picky and don’t like dog-eared corners on my journals.  This case protects those journals and the pen case limits me to carrying only a few pens at a time instead of the entire cup.



This year, I have decided to try writing again with pencils.  The Palomino Blackwing  are a cult favorite among sketch artists and drafters, of which I am neither, but I love the flat eraser and can’t wait to start writing with them!



Back to school means a required reading list.  I love my Monocle subscription and learn something from every issue.  I am a little behind on my reading, so I am considering these back-issues my fall assignment!



While researching Made in America products, I found Marie Turnor handbags.  This lunch sack leather handbag made me smile!  I don’t need to pack my lunch, but I think this idea is so smart and chic, it deserves a spot on the back-to-school list!



Finally, I think you need three more things for your back-to-school supply list.

First, you will need candy!  Peach Buds remind me of my college cramming days.  The candy brand, Butterfields was established in 1924 and was recently reintroduced.  The company is based in Nash, NC, making it another great comeback story for an iconic American Brand.

Second, flowers and some sort of inspiration to keep you motivated.

Third, although you may not have to burn the midnight oil the same way we did in school, a nice candle always seem to make me type a little faster and feel a little happier.  I love the Rewined candles.  Poured in recycled wine bottles, with scents inspired by the flavors of wine, Rewined has quickly grown from a company of one to a company of 30 employees based in Charleston, SC.

So, that is my back-to-school list for my office.  I am all set up and feeling just as motivated as I always did on the first day of class.  Here’s to keeping that motivation going throughout the year!