A very modern notepad

I've thought a lot recently about the way that technology is beginning to take the place of my much-loved notepads. Invariably I have noted things down on paper, but then forgotten the details of the accompanying image that compelled me to record the name or phone number of something; or sketched drawings of design details that I've seen, but failed to capture the true loveliness of the original garment and have been left pondering over what it might actually have looked like. The other problem that has arisen is that I work my way through notepads at an alarming rate and always feel as though I am throwing away so many potential avenues of ideas and inspiration when I file a filled book onto a shelf or consign it to a drawer, knowing that I will rarely revisit the pages.

But in the last year or so, since purchasing an iPhone, I've increasingly used the inbuilt camera to record snapshots of dresses from magazines, to preserve recipes from newspapers, to capture design details from clothes that I've tried on in changing rooms and to memorise potential choices when shopping for materials or wallpapers.

I'm an indecisive purchaser, so it's also been a way of remembering an item of clothing that I've liked but been unsure of. Having fallen in love with the fabric, but not the style, I later bought this top, unpicked the shirring and turned it into a loose fitting vest for summer...I recently saw this top on someone else and regretted unpicking the shirring a little though...but at least I still have a photo of what I could have had if I'd kept my sewing shears in their drawer.

When the cut of a piece of clothing has been unflattering or just not quite right, I've consoled myself by taking a quick photo of it and promising myself that at some point I will work a favourite element of its design into one of my own clothing patterns at a later date. This was the purpose of the below photo of this shirt from White Stuff which was just a bit too big all over - I loved the soft material and the way the pintucks fell away to nothing. I was just about to link to it for you (just in case you like this detail too) and saw that they've introduced a size 6 to their range! This shirt may be mine after all! Unfortunately their shoe range still doesn't include a size 3.....

My photo roll has become my own reference library for when I'm out an about, an offline version of Pinterest.

It's liberating and makes for a lighter handbag to no longer need to preserve pages torn from magazines read during train journeys bearing an image of a dress or the name of a shop I'd like to investigate. And oddly, sometimes just having recorded an image of something you like is enough...the need to actually own it lessens. Surely a good thing.

How have you unexpectedly integrated new technology into your life? Do you use any fantastic apps for ordering all this information?

Modern notepadding aside, this week has been a busy one - I'm just finishing writing a new pattern, which should appear early next week. I've also been using a bolster and hammer to split bricks in half (don't worry, this activity bears no relation to the forthcoming sewing pattern)...such fun that I almost wondered whether I should swap my sewing tools for building ones. Until I remembered that the weather is about to turn cooler. And that really I don't actually like getting my hands dirty.

Florence x


  1. You are so right when you say the need to own something lessens once you have a picture of it in your personal collection.

    My yearning for an iPhone grows stronger and stronger. Hope my birthday provides!!

  2. I'm in the transition stage of phone and notepads LOL! Lots of notes/photos on my phone, plus a notepad with my longer scribblings & cuttings in. Good job I have a v large handbag :-) x

  3. I agree with the visual aspect of iPhones (and had to clear out my camera roll recently just so it would load in under five minutes) but I can't relegate notebooks entirely. I'm currently running two notebooks and two moleskine diaries, which is excessive, but I'm addicted, and I love going through old ones, if only to see how little my preoccupations change with time.

  4. I find Evernote really useful for this - http://www.evernote.com

    You can have linked notebooks that sync across your phone, web account and desktop computer so you have access to all your snaps and notes at any point. I use it for a wine journal, craft to-dos, notes for the novel I'm working on, snaps of posters I want to check out further, books I see mentioned somewhere I'd like to read... and so much lighter than the notebook I used to carry!

  5. I still have a notebook but I love my iphone and couldn't be without it. It wakes me up, entertains me and keeps me in touch with everyone and the world. I also use the camera and photo library as a memory bank and I currently have almost 3,000 pictures in it. The best thing being I have all the photos of my scales going down (I'm on a diet!)


  6. I do the same thing with my iPhone!

    And I just downloaded the Pinterest iPhone app this week and discovered that it has a feature where you can take or upload a photo from your phone. So now when I snap an "idea" photo, I quickly add it to my Pinterest and it's right there with all my other online finds.

    I still like to use notepads for brainstorming and sketching, but then I record everything using my phone (using Pinterest or Evernote) and toss the old pages as I go.

  7. What a great post! I don't own any up to date technology but I've just got a printer and camera (rather than relying on my mobile!) and I don't know how I managed without them!!

  8. I too completely love my (second hand from my husband as he has an iPhone 4 *jealous*) iPhone 3GS!!! I use it for everything and anything. I too have taken pictures in changing rooms, snapshots of magazines, scanned in QR codes, done my weekly shop!!


Post a Comment

Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a message - it's always really lovely to hear from people.

I now tend to reply within the comments section, so please do check back if you've asked a question or wish to chat.

Florence x