So…I have been away. Am I back now? Perhaps.
Why did I disappear? I could give a very valid excuse and say I have been busy. It is true. If you read through my 2015 posts, I ‘faded out’ after January, I stopped bullet journaling in April and then became crazy productive from August to October. It does work out that my heaviest workloads tend to come during that period of time. Ironically, I have been busy writing for work, so I had to neglect writing for this blog.
But, if I were being very honest, I got disillusioned with the whole stationery / planner / journaling scene early this year. I refused to admit it to myself, because I loved this whole community and hobby scene. But I found myself rolling my eyes oh-so-often, and stopping youtube videos after the first 15 seconds.
Then I came across this post, and boom! My disillusionment got up and punched me in the face and said, you feel exactly the same, admit it! To Filofancy, you don’t know me, but thank you for slapping me and waking me up, figuratively speaking of course. 🙂
I was so much into the scene last year, that I started following all the Midori Traveller Notebooks, Hobonichi Techo and even Filofax groups on Facebook I could find. I was watching planner / stationery / washi tape / journal hauls and journal setup videos on Youtube every single day.
But when too many people are following those few influential ones, every video started having the exact same content, all the Hobonichi unboxing videos were EXACTLY the same, every other journal setup copied someone elses’, planner pages were washi-taped to death, everything was pink, every other Etsy shop sold ‘hand-made’ over-priced planner supplies and my friends’ posts on Facebook got drowned out by yet another photo of a crazy-expensive Hobonichi Techo or all-pink journal supplies haul.
People started making copies of originals or buying cheap supplies (I know because I buy from the cheap source) and putting them up for sale on Etsy shops, while over-charging outrageously (my opinion but I am cheap) because they were ‘hand-made’. Everything got pinker by the minute too. Pink filofaxes, pink journals, pink planners, pink stickers, and oh dear mother, pink traveller journals.
The worst part for me was reading posts from enthusiasts who thought nothing of spending hundreds of dollars on journals, planners, supplies and especially the Hobonichi Techo (it is freaking expensive!), ‘just to try it out’, only to set them aside or give them (S$50 planners!) to a 7-year-old due to disliking some obscure, easily-worked-around design detail, and then to spend more money buying something else!
Of course, it is your money and you
throw it away spend it the way you want to. I try my best not to judge, but I was just appalled at how much money people could throw away for the sake of a hobby that could be either permanent or temporary. I am all for encouraging kids to start journaling at a young age, but still, there are so many underprivileged communities in the world without schools or books or even paper and pencil to scribble with, and this what we do with what we have.
Admittedly, I was the same. I love stickers and washi tapes, and hauled them with some vengeance, it is true. The only defence I have is I definitely tried hauling from budget places. Etsy shops were never in my consideration, despite the items being ‘hand-made’. I considered long and hard about the 2016 Hobonichi Techo, I really did. But ultimately, spending almost S$100 on a planner and a fabric cover simply felt wrong. As a single income person caring for my parent, it was just WRONG to spend a week’s food expenses on some minimalist paper and piece of cloth. All this, while I was looking at videos of people who thought nothing of dropping a few hundred dollars per haul.
I am not referring to anybody in particular and I definitely don’t want to hurt anyone with this rant. As I said, it is your money, your right and your privilege to do what you want. I still love this community, and everything going on in it. Please don’t kick me out. The disillusionment, and this rant, is much more a personal issue rather than one against the community in general.
Where am I getting to here? I think I’ve lost myself. But for those of you who have read my rant up to this point, wow, I’m sorry and thank you!
Over the last few months, I have stopped following many groups and instagram feeds, and unsubscribed from many youtube channels, and that has been a whole lot of relief for me. I have tried to keep up with my journaling, at least I did until June. After that, I just got drowned by work and had to set that aside. I have also been thinking longingly of this little blog, but truth to be told, I haven’t been buying stationery for months, so there is nothing to
show off review.
I definitely want to come back and do something here, make something of this little place. To those who have come in on accident during your internet travels, welcome! To the three of you who come back semi-regularly, thank you! Do stay on and expect something more. It may not be much, and it may not be regular, but I definitely want to continue this.
But first, I need to catch up on my journaling and I am also looking into *drum roll* 2017 planners! Yay! Yup, it is the time of the year to ask the question of the year! Stay tuned.