You drink from a reusable bottle. You recycle. You even compost. But yet you still use standard highlighters? Make the switch to these Eco Highligther Pencils ($9). Available in all your favorite highlighter colors — yellow, green, orange, pink, and blue — they contain no plastics, ink solvents, or volatile organic compounds, and can be sharpened using a jumbo sharpener. Oh, and they won't bleed through the page — something that few traditional highlighters can claim.
Let's face it: in an age of online account management, email, Skype, IM, and other methods of near-instant communication and commerce, no one really likes buying postage stamps. So if you have to, you might as well make them as cool as possible. This Johnny Cash Postage Stamp (about $0.50) should certainly qualify. Meant to resemble a 45 rpm record sleeve, the stamp features a black-and-white portrait of Cash taken in 1963 during a Frank Bez photo shoot for Ring of Fire: The Best of Johnny Cash. And it's a Forever stamp, so 20 years from now when stamps cost $10 a piece, you can use it and be all "In yo face!" to the local postmaster.
We're huge fans of Field Notes' stylish notebooks, but most new editions have involved simple changes to the exterior. The Field Notes Expedition Notebook ($10/3-pack) changes all that. The result of months of development and testing, the Expedition is printed on Yupo Synthetic paper — made from extruded polypropylene pellets — making it both water- and tear-proof. Of course, they didn't forget about the outside, either, with a front cover in orange, a rear in black, and a topographic map of Antartica set into the varnish.
Serious note-takers know that keeping an archive of past penmanship is always a good idea. And for Field Notes enthusiasts — us included — there's no finer way to do so than with a Field Notes Archival Wooden Box ($35). Made in Brooklyn from American 5-Ply Birch, this sturdy container features a heat-branded sliding top, letterpressed Divider Tabs, and room for over 60 memo books.
Merge your real-life note taking and online workflow with the Livescribe Sky Smartpen ($170-$200). Available in 2GB and 4GB models, this multi-function pen sports a built-in mic and speaker for recording and playing back the audio that accompanies your notes — up to 200 or 400 hours of it, respectively. Thanks to built-in Wi-Fi, it automatically sends notes and audio to Evernote, and can also share notes directly to other services. Best of all, you can access your notes from nearly anywhere, including on a PC, Mac, iOS or Android device, or pretty much anything with a browser.
Add a touch of wild animal to your desk with one of these Jac Zagoory Staple Removers ($70). Made from heavy, durable pewter, these unique office helpers feature the visages of a number of animals, including a bear, t-rex, elephant, shark, donkey, lion, hippo, snake, gator, and gorilla, each intricately detailed and properly proportioned so the "teeth" of the tool match the teeth of the animal.
What's the main problem with pencils? The need to constantly sharpen them. Which is where the Graf von Faber-Castell Perfect Pencil ($260) excels. This premium pencil — made from Californian cedar — comes complete with a silver, platinum, or Sterling Silver-plated extender that also serves as a sharpener and a cap — complete with clip — for those times when you need to throw your pencil in your pocket and go. Sure, it's expensive, but who ever said perfection was cheap?
Relieve your unproductive meeting frustration without even leaving the meeting room with this Ping Pong Conference Table ($2,400). Made from stark, powder-coated white tubular steel, it features concealed drawers for holding ping pong essentials and/or meeting supplies, a color-coordinated net, and a pair of central panel inserts — one that's a net support, and one that does hide-away power and cable management. Matching paddles not included. [via]
Sitting is bad for you. The Focal Locus Workstation ($1,450) is not. It uses a specially designed seat that sits atop a pivoting leg and an angled footpad integrated into the base to allow you to rest somewhere between sitting and standing, encouraging movement as well as blood and oxygen flow. A matching desk angles down to complement the seat; aluminum, steel, hardwood laminate and polymer construction round out the feature set. [Scouted by Philip]
Whether you're running a small business and want to make things easier for your customers or just moving and want to make the unpacking process a little less painful, Rip Cord Tape ($TBA) can help. This new breed of packing tape has a small string running down the center, letting the opener simply pull the string to separate the tape into halves, and the included tape dispenser is made to leave a tab at the center — all of which allows for effortless access to the inside of the box.
Most premium pens are overpriced — and hacking their refills to fit your cheapo Bic isn't exactly a good solution. This Solid Titanium Pen + Stylus ($65), on the other hand, is. Made completely from TA4 titanium, it features a tension spring to allow it to work with refills from a host of great pen makers, including Cross, Pelikan, Pentel, Mont Blanc, MonteVerde, Zebra, and more — even including the aforementioned Bic. When the pen's not in use, the built-in clip will keep it in place in your bag or on your notebook, while the replaceable stylus tip means its good on more surfaces than just paper.
Add a small touch of class to your office by ditching your disposable for a Ti2 Pen ($55 and up). Based on the Pilot HITEC C pen system, the Ti2 is machined out of grade 2 titanium for strength, looks, and corrosion resistance, features four parts — a cap, main body tube, dual threaded front, and threaded endcap — and is available with your choice of color and size.