This is my first Korean stationery haul. As you can see below I bought a lot of cute Korean stuff, but actually there was a lot of self-restraint involved.
I wanted to buy everything! Korean planners, and notebooks, and pens, and diaries, and markers… But I am proud to say I ended up buying only those supplies I really needed. Only one item was a total miss. Last time I talked about where I got Korean stationery (and explained why all of it is Morning Glory stationery) I promised to confess in this post what that fail was, so read on.
I have always been crazy about school supplies and Korean stationery is so tempting. Here’s a list of everything I ordered from South Korea:
1. Kind Word Book (진절한 다너장 2)
The little notepad is what I have used most often since I got all this stationery goodness. I wrote about how I use it in more detail when I talked about deciding to learn at least one Korean word per day. I’ve been using it every single day, and I’m very satisfied both in terms of quality and usefulness. If you want to know more click on the link above and you can read a detailed explanation there.
Next, Korean notebooks. The notebooks I picked have a very unusual grid, something I’ve never seen before. I searched a bit around and it seems like it’s used for Korean school children to practice Chinese characters, but I have other plans for them (the notebooks, not the children :) ). I love the paper quality, it’s acid-free so it won’t yellow and decay over time, just in case generations to come want to admire pages and pages of 저는 학생이에요 scribbles. The paper has “Eye Soft” color scheme to prevent strain on your eyes if you spend a long time staring at the notebook.
It’s a fancy way to say that paper in the notebooks is slightly creamy in color instead of bright white. Still the paper is not too dark, not too far off white, and I like that. Only gripe I have is that the grid is printed a tad too dark. I like there to be a good contrast between pen and paper with grid receding into the background so it’s not distracting. It’s not too bad, better than in most notebooks, but if I was being nitpicky that would be the main complaint I would have, especially since they already went through the trouble of using such nice paper.
2. Middle school spiral notebook Chinese characters (18), violet (중고 SP 한문 (18) 디자인 : 바이올렛)
This one is going to become a Korean study tracker. Due to my illness I started and stopped studying Korean something like a million times, and on top of that when starting again I usually start studying from a different source. My textbook, grammar book, online lessons, TTMIK podcasts…. there are so many I can’t even remember where I got to last time, so it’s either guessing and diving in at random place or starting all over again.
Well, no more.
Keeping a bullet-journal-style study log should put an end to that: I will know exactly where I left off and I think it will help with a sense of accomplishment and progress, which I desperately need.
Update: You can now see the progression of my Korean study tracker in the new post Is consistency really important when learning Korean?
3. Middle school spiral notebook Chinese characters (17), blue (중고 SP 한문 (17) 디자인 : 블루)
This spiral notebook is identical to the previous one on the inside, it just has more sheets and so is thicker. I will just use it as a regular notebook for language study. I ran out of space in my last Korean notebook which was just a regular lined notebook so it needed to be replaced, and I liked this traditional Korean design with Chinese brush calligraphy on the cover.
4. Middle school Chinese characters (16), black (중고 한문 (16) 디자인 : 블랙)
I want to study from a Korean novel. I know it’s crazy for a beginner to tackle a full-blown foreign language fiction book but I really want to read it. Like really, really.
It’s Korean bestseller book which K-drama was a later based on and I’ve seen it mentioned in many Korean language blogs, even came across it in a comment just several days ago, so I’m hoping it will serve me well too.
Since it’s a historic novel I chose the one with traditional pattern and without a spiral binding to have it look less modern. I have this whole idea that I’m going to slowly copy the novel into the right side of the notebook with pronunciation above each sentence and grammar explanation below, and the left side will be reserved for the new vocabulary that I don’t know.
I’m having trouble sitting up in bed and writing lately, but I will post about this method and how it’s working for me as soon as I can.
5. Moongs Twinkle Notepad (top spiral bound) orange (뭉스 트윙클 수첩(상철) 디자인 : 오렌지)
I used this one a lot already. The simple little cute notepad is stationed right next to me at all times because very often I come across a Korean word I want to know, or a sentence that I think is good for illustrating grammar rule I recently learned, and I just want to have a place to jot it down quickly and then later I can neatly copy it into the notebook or the vocabulary book.
6. – 9. Pocket color pen (double-sided) coco beige, lilac, peach pink, lovely pink (포켓칼라펜(양면))
Four Korean pastel markers swatches on Morning Glory index card, the highlighter side with a straight line and thin felt-tip side with a wavy line.
I wanted to get a highlighter pen. I’ve seen them recommended for Korean language study and I think it will be good for the aforementioned novel to track how (hopefully) I need to look up less and less unknown words.
My issue with highlighters is that they’re very glaring and overwhelming. That’s their original purpose – to highlight things, but my neurological condition makes it very difficult for me to ignore something so… neon. My eyes are drawn to it and I can’t do anything else except stare transfixed. Not good when you’re supposed to be focusing on actually learning the language.
Another issues is that I need high contrast to be able to read, and highlighters obscure the words too much for me.
These mild pastel markers. I was really excited when I saw these Korean pens because they have two sides. One is for highlighting and the other is for regular writing, and I think it will look good to have a pen that matches the highlighter and with these Pocket Color pens I get all that in just one pen body.
10. Pop-up index tape – slim 7 colors (팝업인덱스테이프-슬림7색)
Page marker flags are also something I have always used for language learning. They are great for marking a place in a textbook I didn’t understand well, or writing down a reference where I can look up more explanation of the grammar point.
I am trying to cut down on the use of plastics in my life so I wanted to try paper ones, but I couldn’t find any made by a reliable brand. Last time I got cheap paper ones they destroyed the book I used them on, so never again. Still, last marker flags I had lasted me for literally a decade, I just used the last one several days ago. I would always cut them in thinner strips to use less of them, so I was really happy to find such thin ones to begin with, plus with 7 different colors I can start color-coding different types of remarks which I never did before.
11. & 12. “I want to have my own pretty handwriting”, green light & bread 갖고싶은 나만의 손글씨2 디자인 : 그린라이트 & 브레드
I’m not sure if I translated the title correctly, but this is something I had been wanting for ages. Korean lettering workbooks!
First, my Hangul handwriting is an embarrassment. Some of it is just my inborn tendency to have bad handwriting, some of it is not having practiced writing Hangul while I was a developing kid, and some of it is hand tremor which came courtesy of my neurological illness.
Second, I’ve been envious of beautiful Hangul lettering on social media. Imagine how much more beautiful this blog will be with hand-lettered Hangul. Not gonna happen, haha.
Workbooks have various sections, some are for practicing lettering and doodling, some for Hangul, some for Latin alphabet, and some have examples of beautiful photographs with calligraphy on them.
I still haven’t tried them, on account of not being able to sit up in bed, but I will definitely write more in the future when I test them out.
13. Callibrush pen, black (캘리브러쉬펜 (흑))
A simple felt tip marker with black ink for lettering, to use in the workbooks above. I was pleasantly surprised at the difference of very thin up-strokes and thick down-strokes it was capable of making considering the price of this brush maker.
14. Aurora hardcover notebook with elastic band, emerald pink (오로라 밴딩 양장노트 디자인 :에메랄드 핑크)
It’s blue pink though.
It’s a simple lined notebook, hardcover and quite thick with elastic closure and one page for personal info in the back. I am using it to write down more permanent notes than I do in the notepad, something I know I’ll be referencing for next few years.
15. The Classic 100 days notebook (클래식백일노트 디자인 : 블랙)
This black beauty is a Korean diary for 100 days. Each page is beautifully decorated and you would have a hard time finding two pages that look the same. It also has the highest quality paper of all the notebooks I got so there’s no ghosting and bleed-through with the pens I use.
I won’t use it for anything related to Korean language learning. My doctors recommended I keep track of symptoms and medical emergency to try to glean from it some pattern (there’s no freaking pattern). As a result, at the end of the year I had a notebook filled to the brim with the most horrible things that happened to me that year. To offset that I decided to employ a second one, where I will only write the most positive things that happened. My life is not that horrible. I think.
16. Luxury Envelope 2, purple (고급봉투 2 색상 : 보라)
Korean envelopes are most often vertical, not horizontal. This one seems to be designed as a thank-you note, but I am too selfish to give away such fancy stationery so I just keep them for storing slips of papers that I need to keep for several years for whatever reason. Sometimes it’s receipts, sometimes a love letter from a mysterious stranger.
Ok, fine it’s just receipts.
17. Vintage Garden mini book .B (빈티지가든미니북 .B)
And lastly the fail. I had big plans for this notebook, but it turns out I should have had tiny tiny plans. I completely misjudged the dimensions of this notebook. I was expecting a regular sized notebook, the same size as the black one, and when I open the package there it was, this mini tiny tiny micro notebook that I have no idea what to do with now.
It also has a quite dark pattern on the inside pages so I have some contrast issues. I knew this from the images on the product page, but since I thought it’s bigger I thought I’d be able to write larger letters so it wouldn’t have been such a problem. Does anyone have any suggestions on how I could use it?
I gotta admit it’s adorable because of its size, though 😆 Also a quite beautiful and well-made hardcover notebook, especially for people who like vintage design notebooks. It’s quite magical.
As you can see there are quite a few items. I tried to write short description for each, but feel free to ask me for any details in the comments below. You don’t have to log in, nor leave an e-mail address to comment. Just make sure you use an e-mail address if you want to subscribe.
That’s all for the Korean stationery haul. See you soon.
10 thoughts on “Korean stationery haul: 17 cute notebooks and language study supplies”
I love reading your blog, Luna! It’s really funny and interesting to read! And really motivating for a lazy girl like me haha (´-ω-`). I try to learn Korean but it usually lasts for 15 mins and then after few weeks I start again, it’s frustrating lol!
Keep going <33
ikr i feel you
Loved this post! I happened to me as well to be fooled about the actual size of a notebook when buying online – I also have pretty big handwriting so small pages really don’t work for me 😅 I’m dying to buy more Asian stationery but I’m currently on a shopping ban so I’ll have to make use of what I already have (which is a lot, honestly) 😆
I know what you mean. I also decided not to buy anything until I’ve used up everything I have, since I’ve been reading about what horrible effects overconsumption has on our planet and us.
But still, stationery is such a bright and positive part of my life, it really cheers me up every time I see it and use it.
So do you plan on throwing the notebooks away after you fill them up ??
Back when I could write more I would use scrap pieces of paper for practicing and put it into recycle bin immediately afterwards, but I would keep my grammar and vocabulary notes in a nicer notebook. So I will probably keep notebooks as nice as these for a while.
Do you throw away notebooks after you fill them up?
I don’t really use notebooks. I just personally am into danshari and I don’t want to become a hoarder
That’s admirable. I am practicing minimalism too, mostly because I worry a lot about climate change and consuming items (rather than knowledge, ideas and experiences) is one of the main drivers of climate change.
However, Korean has proven itself to be a very important part of my life for the last 6 or 7 years, it is obviously not something I will give up on easily, and I am not at all hesitant to equip myself with necessary tools.
I am bedridden, I don’t own items that normal people do. I have no shoes, no jacket, no hairbrush, no makeup, no umbrella, no bag, no desk….. But I do now have 4 notebooks for studying Korean. If that makes me a hoarder, so be it :)
Here is a suggestion for the last one. You could give it to your mom so she can make a list and carry it in her purse when running errands for you.
Mooooom! I already told you I’m not giving it to you :)