31 August 2012

ALL STARS GUEST POST - Filofax Pro & Con's from Thoughts & Exploration

Hello everyone, here is a lovely blog post from Deborah from Thoughts & Exploration, I hope you enjoy it!!! I am so excited for this post, AND I WANT HER OSTRICH... PLEASE

I'm very happy to be a guest writer, as part of the Philofaxy All Stars Tour, on Imy's wonderful blog! Thank you, Imy! I've been following Imy's blog for quite a while now and love to read her posts and watch her YouTube videos. So I'm honored to be featured here!

Imy asked me to write about my Filofax collection and discuss why I purchased each one, the pros and cons of each, and if I had any buyer's remorse. After avoiding the counting exercise for months and months, I finally did an official count of how many FFs I actually have: 12. They are:


              • Classic in Personal and A5
              • Malden in Personal
              • Finsbury in Personal
              • Aston in A5
              • Kendal in Personal and Pocket
              • Amazona in Personal
              • Holborn in Personal
              • Deco in Personal (x2)
              • Ostrich in Personal

As you can see, my favorite size is the Personal (9 out of 12). The two A5s are used for work, although I'm going to start using one of them as my home Filo. In this post I only show a picture of the front of each. Pictures of the insides can be found all over the internet. I didn't want this post to get too picture heavy.


The Classics. These were my first two Filofaxes. Those were the days…I was just learning about Filofax and decided to give them a try. I had no obsession for FFs in particular, although I've always had a love for planners. Little did I know that with these first two, I was sowing the seeds for a Filofax obsession. Ah well, those were the days. I bought the black Personal with the intent to use it as my personal organizer that I'd carry around in my purse. I did just that for a couple of months and had/have no regrets about this purchase. The black A5 was a gift from my wonderful husband. He bought it for me days before his infantry unit was deployed to Iraq. I wanted an A5 for work and the Classic was a gift that let me think of him all day long while I was at work. I have a very strong sentimental attachment to this A5 Classic and will NEVER get rid of it. It is going to become my home fax.


- beautiful Italian leather, nice feel to the leather, a long zippered pocket, nice ring size, classic/streamlined professional look, doesn't scratch easily, structured

Cons - doesn't lay flat, simple layout (6 CC pockets, 3 larger pockets), small pen loop


- same beautiful Italian leather, looks professional, 6 cc slots and two slightly larger slots and 3 long pockets (incl. a zippered pocket), slot for a writing pad, 2 pen loops, doesn't scratch easily, nice ring size, lays almost completely flat, structured, was a sentimental gift from my husband before he left for Iraq

Cons - small/tight pen loops


The Malden. I purchased a crimson Personal and a grey Pocket because there was so much chatter on Philofaxy about the Maldens. I simply had to try them out. I had no special purpose for the Personal one…it would just become another personal in-purse Filo that I could switch to. I have recently sold the Pocket that was originally purchased to be my wallet. No regrets with the crimson Personal but the grey Pocket just didn't completely work for me. I found that I never really used it as a planner. At one point I took out the planning pages and just had lined paper in it to jot notes down but the rings were so large (for a pocket being used as a wallet, in my opinion) I ended up not doing that either.

Pocket (recently sold)

- nice color grey, lovely little brushed metal popper with "Filofax" written on it, nice small zippered pocket for change, long & large outside back pocket for paper currency

Cons - 1 small pen loop, not enough pockets for CCs and receipts and for odd bits of papers & notes I tend to collect during the day, the ring size just doesn't seem to work for me and I end up not using the ring feature at all


Pros - beautiful color and leather, nice brushed metal popper, all of the same pros as the pocket (minus the long outside back pocket), nice amount of pockets (4 dedicated CC slots, 3 long pockets, zippered pocket, 1 slot pocket for a note pad), nice ring size, lays flat

Cons - only 1 pen loop that is not elasticized


The Finsbury. I bought this aqua Personal-sized one simply because I was reading that the color was discontinued and because I'd read on Philofaxy that quite a few people have Finsburys. Why not give it a try? I have never used this one. I've had it for months! And once I decided to give it a try, I noticed that when turning pages the bottom ring snags the paper a little bit. I know this is fixable but I haven't done anything to fix it. The rings don't look bad but there is a very slight misalignment with a couple of the rings. And really, I just couldn't bring myself to move into it because I like all of my other ones better. So it is brand new and I am more than happy to sell it to someone who will appreciate and use it. {hint hint :-) Let me know if you are interested. I'm happy to send pics to whomever is interested}.

Pros - gorgeous color, nice texture, has a zippered pocket

Cons - stiff leather, doesn't lay flat, simple layout (6 CC slots and 2 larger pockets), slight misalignment on some of the rings


The Aston. This black A5 binder is wonderful. I bought it from Adspot specifically for the purpose of switching it off and on with the A5 Classic as my work binder. No regrets at all!

Pros - pretty yet simple outside design, nice soft leather, looks professional, great ring size, plenty of pockets for my work use (3 large pockets - incl one zipped, slot for a notepad, 3 dedicated CC slots, 3 other slots that can be used for biz cards, etc), structured yet still malleable, elasticized pen loop

Cons - only one pen loop


The Kendals. I bought these because I saw a YouTube video by Josh LaPorte and instantly fell in love. Plus, I believe that these are discontinued so I had to snatch up not only a brown Pocket but also a brown Personal. I'm embarrassed to say that I've never, ever used either of these. Still, I will one day…and yes, I'll give the Pocket one a try just because it is so beautiful.


Pros - beautiful leather, zippered pocket for coins, outside back pocket for receipts and/or cash, elasticized pen loop, small ring size (good for me since I just can't seem to make use of the rings in the pockets when used as a wallet)

Cons - only one pen loop, only 3 CC slots, overall not enough pockets/slots to be ideal, doesn't lay flat


Pros - oh so beautiful leather, 2 elasticized pen loops, nice outside pocket on the back

Cons - same as the Pocket's cons


The Amazona. I love this Personal black binder! This is one that I'll never sell or give away. I bought this one to try out as my personal in-purse organizer and really love it. I had a really hard time moving out of this one because of all of the pros. No regrets here!!! Even with the cons…I still love this binder. This was the longest used one before I purchased and moved into my current one, the Ostrich.

Pros - gorgeous croc embossed leather, has a nice patent leather sheen to it, looks sophisticated, feels great to hold, two pen loops, nice ring size, pretty pretty pretty, zippered pocket, pretty pretty pretty

Cons - pen loops not elasticized, overall could use more pockets (one zippered and one "pocket flap" and only five CC slots)


The Holborn. Another one of my favorites. I purchased this black Personal binder after hearing about all of the pockets. I'm a sucker for pockets and slots. This planner doesn't disappoint! No regrets with this purchase. I was using this one right before I bought my Ostrich binder and was really enjoying the Holborn.

Pros - pockets pockets pockets, really lovely soft leather, easy to make lay flat, zippered pocket, elasticized pen loop, nice ring size, nice looking binder

Cons - none!


The Decos. I first bought the ruby Personal Deco to, again, have another option for switching my personal organizer…you don't wear the same pair of shoes with every outfit, right?? And I love all things deco so it was a given that I'd eventually buy this. After buying the ruby I decided to buy the ivory one when someone on Adspot decided to sell hers. No regrets with either purchase.

Pros - really distinct leather design…pretty, fabulous closure mechanism - unlike any other Filo, nice contrasting of materials used on the inside, zippered pocket, elasticized pen loop, "accordion" pocket in the back, classic, lays flat

Cons - only one pen loop, would like a couple of more pockets…I'm a pocket gal


The Ostrich. This is my current Filofax and I'm not planning on moving out of this beauty any time soon. I adore this one because it's so luxurious and different and classic. It is unique and a pleasure to use every day. I've done a review of my Personal Ostrich in buttercup here and I did a post of my set-up on my blog, Thoughts & Exploration. Regrets? HECK NO! Since purchasing the ostrich I have had no desire to purchase another Filofax.

Pros - amazing ostrich full-quill leather, lovely color, unique, luxurious, plenty of pockets - very similar to the Holborn, zippered pocket, fabulous texture…it's great to hold and touch, very soft, lays flat

Cons - only one non-elasticized pen loop

All-in-all, I'm really happy with all of the binders in my collection. I think that some time in the very distant future I may move out of my ostrich to try out the Kendal since the Kendals are the only ones that I want to keep that have never been used. I can certainly see myself parting with the aqua Finsbury and maybe even the personal Classic (if anyone is interested!) but the others will stay under my care for a bit longer.

I hope you found this post interesting and useful (in case you are thinking of purchasing one of these models). Any questions? Fire away!

Thanks again, Imy, for featuring me on your blog!! It was a fun post to write!

Thank you ever so much Deborah, but PLEASE may I have your Ostrich as a form of payment…. Joking, but I WOULD LOVE AN OSTRICH, I think that is about all that I would take me out of my regency at the moment, as I feel the Regency is the POOR mans Ostrich as it is a similar pattern!

I have really enjoyed seeing your point of view with regards to each different Filofax!!!!

Thank you for this post I have very much enjoyed it!!!


  1. So jealous of the two Decos! I really want one in Ivory but I already have too many Filofax organisers and I think I already have 'the one' x

  2. Thank you, Imy! I was very happy to do it! As for the Ostrich....hmmm, not on your life, sister! :-) This one is a keeper for me. But if I'm invited to your dinner party that you're hosting over on my blog, I'll let you pet it and take a look at it!

  3. What a great post! Do try the Kendal someday, I love mine although agree, the pockets are inadequate. For my uses, I really find I need 30mm rings, at least 6 card slots, at least 2 long pockets, two pen loops, and ideally a secretarial flap in my personal size which severely limits my options.

    Since your Philofaxy review of the Ostrich, I keep looking at that one and the lovely Alligator model as well. Look ideal but don't have the second pen loop or the 30mm rings.

    1. Thank you, Josh! I will certainly be trying out the Kendals! As soon as my infatuation with the ostrich wanes a little bit, I'll move into the Kendal.

      The lack of a second pen loop is disappointing but I solved that by adding a Flex pen loop on the left. I slid it into one of the pockets. It is working perfectly.

      The ring size....unfortunately no fix there. The size has been working well for me though.

      I'll definitely do a review of the Kendal once I start using it! It's all due to you, Josh! ;-)

  4. Great collection - I'm sure it will be difficult to let go of some of them. I had the Holborn in my basket ready to purchase when I spied the Ostrich....

  5. Really good post, which I enjoyed, but, and here's where the philistine in me comes out because I have to say that I really feel that the Ostrich is just not for me. I'm a Scanda/Cuban sort of person, although I am very flexible when it comes to colours, Brown or Back, I don't mind :o)

  6. Hi Dem,

    I'm very interested in your beautiful Finsbury. Is there an email address which I can contact you at to discuss this?


  7. Hi John! Thanks for the comment. I was hesitant about getting it as I didn't know whether it would be to "weird of a leather" for me. When I first opened the box and actually got to see it in person and hold it, it took me a few minutes to get used to the uniqueness and actually really start to love it because of that. At first though, I wasn't sure. Now I love, love, love it!

    So I guess there are no reds in your future? Brown or black? lol!

  8. Hi Mel! You can email me at thoughtsexploration@gmail.com. Am happy to provide detailed pics, etc. Thanks!

  9. Hi Cloudberry! Thank you! It was nice to actually pull them all out at the same time. I'd never done that before. Ahhh the Holborn! Hmmm, don't you need a gardening Filo, Cloudberry?? ;-)