Product Review: The Love Layla Desk Calendar

I can already tell that 2018 is going to be a better, brighter year for me.

Partly because I’ve set the intention that it will be (proactivity FTW), partly because I’ve never reflected on a year and felt bad overall so far, and partly because I skimmed through my Love Layla Desk Calendar, and I am in for some motivational treats every single month.

The Love Layla Desk Calendar

Believe it or not, I’ve never had a desk calendar before, which is a ridiculous fact for me to type out right now.

I’ve done a degree, a masters, a PhD, started my own business, successfully maintained daily posts on that business for god knows how long, alongside charitable efforts, personal projects, holidays, and family commitments, and yet I’ve barely put pen-to-calendar for any major commitment in my life, let alone owned a desk calendar.

What the ever loving fuck Emmeline.

I’m looking at the above list of stuff (secretly knowing there’s more I could add to it) wondering how I haven’t just dropped dead from my unorganized workaholic habits yet and wanting to slap myself as if I were a Batman & Robin meme (and, no, not the Only Fools And Horses one).

But no more! For I now own a desk calendar.

Not just any desk calendar – The Love Layla Desk Calendar – and it rocks my socks more than a rainbow-coloured candy cane.

A previously unknown event.

The first important thing to note about this product (as of this review) is that it arrived very promptly, and this isn’t typical of my area. Post sent from Devon goes out speedy but comes in with all the swiftness of a hare racing a tortoise, and we all know how that ended.

This is going to be particularly important given how close we are to Xmas.

Given the current date, guaranteed Christmas shipping might be a lost hope depending on its destination ( the final cut-off date being the 21st by official recommendations), but you should get it in time for the New Year and that’s kind of what matters with a 2018 calendar. Besides, blagging that the irony of a Calendar arriving late was part of the joke of the gift could totally work if you’ve got the cool to pull it off.

In theory it should arrive, but I don’t want to make any promises I can’t keep (especially seeing as the speed at which you order this item will ultimately be in your hands).

But, anyway, on to appraising the calendar.

The calendar itself comes in at 190mm x 140mm, is a full coloured calendar, and is printed on 180gsm uncoated paper. This gives each page a thick, card-like sensation which is matte and actually feels lovely to the touch…not that I expect many of you to be stroking your calendars regularly or anything. But, c’mon, it’s nice to feel like the surface you’re writing on is receptive, easy to jot your notes on to, and sturdy enough not to allow them to leak through to the other side.

The Love Layla Desk Calendar ticks all of these boxes, which is a great first starting point for any calendar.

I’d love to say I can’t tell you how many calendars I’ve tried that have failed this test, but that would be a lie, because usually I only have wall calendars (as per my previous confession). These wall calendars have, however, varied in quality, and I have noticed that a bad calendar just makes me less inclined to use it (that’s my excuse and I’m sticking with it). So, to have a calendar that feels like it’s got my back, I’m already on board with giving it more of a try.

Due to the dimensions of the Love Layla Desk Calendar (and the fact that it is just a compact desk calendar, after all) you won’t be able to write out extensive daily agendas on this calendar. What you do get, however, is a reasonable amount of space to jot down one key event.

Note it down for November guys ;)

I didn’t know how to feel about this at first, desk calendar newbie that I am, but on reflection I think it’s a good thing. Primarily because it allows me to be succinct and keep the really big events close to my vision, without muddying it with any of the daily niggles that can go in my totally-used-and-never-neglect-no-sir annual diary.

Not only this, but if you really want there’s also another side to each Love Layla Desk Calendar page which just has a monthly block countdown of the current month and the month previous and proceeding. This allows you to circle any important dates so that, if needed, you can flip it, look to see if anything is highlighted, and then look in to those commitments further should you wish.

I really appreciate this feature but, what I appreciate more, is the visual/motivational/humor included with each month.

I amalgam all of these together because that’s pretty much what Love Layla does too. I mean, I wouldn’t be reviewing a calendar if it didn’t have some sexual undertones, some body love ones, and some just random British tomfoolery, and you’re pretty much guaranteed all of these with Love Layla.

As usual, Love Layla have picked a very appealing font have have illustrations that are simple but pleasing when it comes to aesthetic appeal. This is a clean, clear calendar that I am proud to have on my desk and rides the balance of being a little NSFW cheeky while still being totally SFW.

The sauciest of the months is probably May, but I admit that I have a soft spot for August, because fuck yeah to giving the middle finger to the ‘beach body’ mentality.

When I get a new calendar I always love to look at November and see what I might be in for (because, naturally, I’ll forget come the many months that proceed November, meaning I still get to re-experience the surprise) and, I’ve gotta admit, I dig how it’s oddly aligned with my eating disorder recovery. I also love how it’s told me that my Birthday next year falls on a Sunday, but I digress.

I etched my first big event (which may or may not be my Birthday) into the Love Layla Desk Calendar and was pleased to find that, even with the thick Papermate biro that I had heavily applied to the page, no indentation showed through on the next page, so success there.

Flipping each page of the calendar to skim through each month is also easy, without feeling flimsy, and the base of this calendar feels sturdy and seems like it will last the year.

And, of course, as a little nod to their own company, Love Layla have marked down all the important yearly events that you might want to buy a card from them for. Just a little wink-wink, nudge-nudge.

The website plug at the bottom of the calendar’s base is perhaps a bit more on the nose, and might be one of the bigger downsides depending on your work’s policy on external advertisement (some are very strict), or even your own feeling about blatant brand placement.

It doesn’t personally bother me, but then again Love Layla are one of my sponsors, so I suppose it’s a bit of a given that I’m happy to advertise their company already.

The small space given will probably be the other downside for some. It can be hard to put bigger or lengthier events in to each month, and Love Layla could have shrunk their designs a bit to afford more space to each month, but this really is minor. So far I’ve been able to fit in all my events, either in full or as easy-to-understand shorthand, so I don’t feel like this calendar has shortchanged me.

Now, whether or not I’ll actually be persistent with desk calendar use…I suppose we’ll find out in December of next year.

Final Thoughts

It seemed a given to me to try the Love Layla Desk Calendar, as I really should have been using one up until this point, but I am aware that my limited experience in this area of product appraisal might concern others. To which I can only say that I have shopped around for desk calendars before, I’ve just never found one I’ve like enough to shell out for.

So far they’ve typically either been too flat, too wide, too flimsy, too disorganized, or just visually bland. And, yes, this is including my stationary Mecca, Paperchase.

However, I feel like the Love Layla Desk Calendar ticks many of the boxes for such a calendar that others have so far lacked.

No, it’s probably not the perfect calendar, but it is one that I would probably eagerly purchase (or keenly add to a pre-existing site offer), and I feel more confident and organized now that I own it.

Because of this, I feel confident in recommending this product to you, and hope that you get as much enjoyment from each of the monthly messages as I did.

I mean, let’s face it, that’s what most of us use to pick a calendar anyway, and the Love Layla wit is alive and well with their desk calendar.

Recommend to:

People who like cheeky calendars.

People who want a just-SFW work desk calendar.

People who want to give a middle-finger to body standards (bar the January, which is on the fence).

Do Not Recommend to:

People who dislike the design.

People who want loads of writing space.

People who just don’t like/use desk calendars (they do wall ones too).

The Love Layla Desk Calendar was provided to me by Love Layla in exchange for an honest review.