A planner pad and a notebook in a collage

Sustainable ‘back-to-school’ stationery for an eco-friendly September reset

Posted by for Home and interiors

All products on this page have been selected by the editorial team, however Stylist may make commission on some products purchased through affiliate links in this article

Enjoy the satisfaction of buying new stationery while still being friendly to the planet with the help of this sustainable edit.

Although the weather outside may suggest otherwise, September is here – a time of the year often associated with fresh starts and the chance to ‘reset’ ahead of the winter months. And with many returning to the office for the first time now that coronavirus restrictions have lifted, those vibes are stronger than ever.

While there are plenty of ways to embrace a fresh start this September, one tried-and-tested way of ‘resetting’ your life is investing in some new stationery. It may seem small, but for many people, the experience of buying new pens, notebooks and office products brings back memories of the back-to-school period – a time very much associated with new beginnings.

And not only that, but investing in new stationery can provide you with the motivation you need to get and stay organised – helping you to feel more in control in the busier winter months. Plus, there’s nothing more satisfying than writing on the first page of a new notebook, is there? 

The only problem with stationery is that it can be quite wasteful; many plastic pens, for example, are designed to be single-use, and many notebooks use unrecycled paper. There are ways around this – many companies now use FSC-approved paper, which means the forests used to produce the product are managed in an environmentally responsible way – but that doesn’t negate the fact that shopping for stationery can be harmful.

That is, if you don’t know where to look. Nowadays, there are plenty of eco-friendly, sustainable stationery products on offer which are good for you and the planet – so you can get organised and support businesses which are doing their bit for the environment. Keep reading to check out our edit of the best sustainable stationery to shop this September. 

  • Martha Brook Personalised Recycled Coffee Cup Notebook

    Personalised Recycled Coffee Cup Notebook from Martha Brook.
    Sustainable stationery: Personalised Recycled Coffee Cup Notebook from Martha Brook.

    Martha Brook is known for its collection of beautiful, personalised stationery products, and this eco-friendly twist on its traditional offering is extra special.

    Not only is the cover of this lovely notebook made fully from recycled coffee cups using a special process that extracts the paper, but the inside is also filled with fully recycled FSC-approved paper – what’s not to love? 

    Shop Martha Brook Personalised Recycled Coffee Cup Notebook at Not On The High Street, £16.95

  • Vent For Change Recycled Drinks Bottle Pens

    Recycled Drinks Bottle Pens from Vent For Change
    Sustainable stationery: Recycled Drinks Bottle Pens from Vent For Change.

    These colourful pens from Vent For Change aren’t just pretty to look at: they’re made out of recycled old drinks bottles and can be refilled once their ink runs out, so they’re super sustainable and allow you to reduce your amount of plastic waste.

    Plus, 10% from every purchase from Vent For Change goes to education projects worldwide to help children affected by war and conflict, natural disasters and extreme poverty to get back into school, so your purchase will be doing good all round. 

    Shop Vent For Change Recycled Drinks Bottle Pens in Yellow at Not On The High Street, £3.99

  • The Completist Smudge Mix A5 Notepad

    Smudge Mix A5 Notepad from The Completist.
    Sustainable stationery: Smudge Mix A5 Notepad from The Completist.

    This colourful desk pad from The Completist is perfect for jotting down any to-do lists or daily reminders to help you stay organised throughout the working day.

    Although the paper used in this desk pad isn’t recycled, it is FSC certified and has recycled cardboard backing, so it’s still pretty eco-friendly. Plus, it’s printed using vegetable inks and packed in a biodegradable film bag, so you don’t have to worry about any hidden environmental impacts, either. 

    Shop The Completist Smudge Mix A5 Notepad at Papersmiths, £6.50

  • Once Upon A Tuesday Abstract Rainbow Weekly Planner Pad

    Planner Pad
    Sustainable stationery: Leopard Print Weekly Planner Pad from Once Upon A Tuesday.

    If you often find yourself juggling a myriad of projects, tasks and responsibilities, this handy desk pad from Once Upon A Tuesday could help you to feel more in control. As well as having spots for every day of the week, it also has a habit tracker and a weekly to-do list, so you can stay on top of your goals and routines, too.

    Sustainability wise, it’s made with 100% recycled paper without the use of optical brightening agents, and printed using both 80% renewable energy and vegetable-based inks.  

    Shop Abstract Rainbow Weekly Planner Pad at Once Upon A Tuesday, £12.50

  • Heart & Parcel Star Burst Dots Print Magazine File

    Star Burst Dots Print Magazine File from Heart & Parcel.
    Sustainable stationery: Star Burst Dots Print Magazine File from Heart & Parcel.

    Get rid of those dreaded loose paper piles with the help of this adorable magazine file from Heart & Parcel.

    Perfect for storing important documents and notebooks in a tidy fashion, these files are made with 100% recycled cotton and hand screen printed using eco-friendly dyes – so they’re just as good for the planet as they are helpful for you and your home. 

    Shop Heart & Parcel Star Burst Dots Print Magazine File at Not On The High Street, £15.95

  • Port West Recycled Notebook

    Port West Recycled Notebook
    Sustainable stationery: Recycled Notebook from Port West.

    If a non-personalised notebook is more your style, this minimalist rust-coloured notebook from Port West could be just what you’re looking for. This sleek and sophisticated design comes in three styles – blank, dot-grid and ruled – so you can choose one which suits your work style.

    Besides looking great, this notebook is super sustainable, too – its inner-pages are made from FSC recycled paper, and its cover is made from FSC-certified natural dyed paperboard. Plus, all carbon emissions released in the production of the notebook’s paper are offset after its finished. 

    Shop Port West Recycled Notebook at Wearth London, £6.49

  • Paper High Recycled Newspaper Pencils

    Recycled Newspaper Pencils from Paper High.
    Sustainable stationery: Recycled Newspaper Pencils from Paper High.

    These unique pencils from Paper High are perfect for jotting down any quick notes or sketching out your latest ideas.

    Plus, because they’re wood free and handmade from eco-friendly recycled newspaper, these pencils also help to reduce the amount of unwanted global waste and cut down on usage of unsustainable resources. 

    Shop Paper High Recycled Newspaper Pencils at Not On The High Street, £4.95

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Lauren Geall

As Stylist’s digital writer, Lauren Geall writes on topics including mental health, wellbeing and work. She’s also a big fan of houseplants and likes to dabble in film and TV from time-to-time.