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Inside Stationery (Pt. 04): Beate Mangrig – Roterfaden Taschenbegleiter

Inside Stationery - series background (click to expand)
I have been doing stationery reviews for a few years now. While I will continue making these, I sometimes feel that the focus on the products and their specs tends to take over.

Although the artefacts of stationery are the products we buy and use, hence there is a rightful interest in their goods and bads, there is more to stationery than the artefact.

The purpose of the ‘Inside Stationery’-series is to illuminate stationery beyond the artefact – and talk to the interesting makers, designers, and founders behind all the pens, notebooks, and inks.

I hope you enjoy reading the interviews as much as I enjoy talking to all these people!



with Beate Mangrig 

Part I: Beate Mangrig & Roterfaden Taschenbegleiter

Scrively: A few words about yourself: What is your background and what is it that you are doing?

BM: I developed the organiser called TASCHENBEGLEITER (»bag companion«), first booklets, and the corporate design for the brand ROTERFADEN as my design diploma in 2006.

I got an award and very good feedback. My diploma faded over to the start-up of the company. After 14 years, ROTERFADEN became a stable brand. 

Magazine_Roterfaden Taschenbegleiter

Scrively: Can you tell me how and why you decided to start making ROTERFADEN TASCHENBEGLEITER? What were the thoughts behind that?

BM: During my diploma, I figured that the users of analog calendars, calendar systems, and sketchbooks want individual freedom. I started to search for solutions to allow people to use and combine any refills (bought or self-made) they loved and needed. The refills should be easy to change and all loose papers should work as well.

Animation_Roterfaden Taschenbegleiter

Scrively: Looking back at how ROTERFADEN TASCHENBEGLEITER started and where you are now – what do you think/feel? 

BM: I enjoy that ROTERFADEN is a hub in a network of german manufactories. Together we produce high quality, long-lasting goods. The design is part of that quality. We support our customers individuality and we are thankful that ROTERFADEN users recommend the brand.

ROTERFADEN listens to the customers and learns from their suggestions, wishes, and critic. For instance around the question of which products we should be carrying in the assortment. We are producing for and speaking to a wide range of occupational groups. Because the clip mechanism allows all kinds of bound booklets, we sell worldwide. We want to find more customers and retailers worldwide, sharing our values .

Part II: Beate Mangrig & Stationery

Scrively: What meaning does stationery and (analogue) writing/note-taking/journaling have for you personally?    

on the train_Roterfaden Taschenbegleiter

BM: I know about the effects of handwriting and I enjoy the beauty of it. The aspect of »companionship« is part of the product’s name. My analog BEGLEITER / COMPANION is filling time-slots in the train, in the waiting room, till the kids come home, before going to bed. It can be helpful to plan your life and to observe personal behavior!

I wish for everybody to do more analog writing instead of wasting time on social media. It is important for me that the analog calendar can be stored on the bookshelf, which the digital can not. My analog calendar and my note booklets are filled with beautiful little drawings of my kids or pictures – this is very hard to experience in a similar way in the digital world.

Scrively: What is your personal favourite pen or stationery item?

BM: I do not own much stuff. I enjoy the companionship of quality handmade goods. I still use the leather pencil case I had in school. I prefer pens that I can refill. My favourite stationery item, of course, is my TASCHENBEGLEITER.

Scrively: May I glance at your desk? What’s on there/what do we see there? Please go ahead and describe a little!

BM: My desk is out of natural wood. I love it, but I need a »ROTERFADEN desk mat« to write on. Feels great! I use a »MacBook Air«, covered in the »ROTERFADEN Mac Book Cover«. The cover stays permanent around the device, which is easy and secure. It is important to me to protect it because I want to use the devices as long a possible. I proudly own a big second monitor. Big thank you to the person who pushed me to buy it some years ago.

Beates desk_Roterfaden Taschenbegleiter

As I said, I love to go on to use the leather pencil case I got in high school. Why should I need a new one? I carry it with me, therefore I keep it slim. One important pen I always have with me is the »Faber Castell perfect pencil«.

Pens for the office stay inside a »ROTERFADEN pencil tray« on the desk.

My TASCHENBEGLEITER lays open on the desk. It includes the weekly calendar, a notebook (with notes or sketches I want to keep), and a notepad (tasks I do not have to store).

Links: Deep dive, if you like

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