Smythson Panama Diary


I am so twenty nineteen.

A time traveller.

Have been for a while now. Well, about two weeks.

Don’t worry, I’ve not yet lost what is left of my mind.

Just that for about 6 weeks a year, I’m ahead. Full of the excitement that the new year brings. 

Hopeful personal promises and resolutions, all to be broken, but for now, mine, shining and winking like the wide open sky that greets me as I step outside of my house early on a crisp winter’s morning.


The Bond Street purveyors of stationery Smythson start each year’s diary in mid November.

This, I suspect is for highly sensible and practical reasons. I ignore these reasons, preferring to allow the early start to let me dream.

So in early November I take a confusing trip down Bond Street, as the store moved a couple of years back, and I still think it’s in the old location.

Cross the threshold, hello back to any greetings received and head to the back. Stare up at the wall of diaries, pretending to decide, already knowing I picked the colour out online an age ago. Find my colour, ignore the one on display and pick up diary two or three behind.

Walk over to the till & job done.

Well almost. I like to get it stamped. Just to remind me who I am. 

Whilst you may refer back to my previous personalisation article, and think I’m a hypocrite, I do think that there are some awful personalisation options out there. That said, Smythson personalisation manages to be among the best.

Always St. Germain btw. 

Palm crossed with silver, and initials volunteered, the diary wings its way all of 5 yards to be stamped. Normally there is a delay of an hour or two, but this time I watched mesmerised. 

As for the diary itself, I used to buy the Soho, but invariably by January I’d be back to buy a pocket friendly Panama. Now I start and finish with the Panama, in cross grain, although I have been known to be tempted by the deerskin.

’m told, there are wonderful app’s & programs which will keep track of my meetings & important social events, but, I’m pretty sure my Panama will beat them.

Because here is the thing, when it comes to diaries the Panama is king. Small enough to fit in pocket of my coat, yet, sturdy enough to be used all year and filled with that wonderful and seemingly indestructible featherweight paper, it contains everything I need to keep a track of, and nothing more.