Like the handwritten letter, the hand-bound journal is a dying art. But it lives on at M-SQUARE PRESS, the studio in San Francisco where Mai Kong and Maria Ha ply their throwback trade. In this age
 of Twitter shout-outs and Instagram updates, the two friends focus on more tangible forms of self-expression: making custom stationery and producing one-of-a-kind journals, photo albums and other keepsakes for clients who appreciate the feel of paper and the artistry of work that machines can’t replicate. Bound with waxed linen thread or leather string and featuring other reclaimed and recyclable materials (think wood and old vinyls for journal and album covers), every product comes with a personalized touch and a painstaking attention to detail. You tell them what you’re after, and Kong and Ha bring your vision into being, imprinting­ journal and album pages with unique designs and emblazoning covers with hand-sketched, wood-burned engravings that no computer could ever match. We especially love the custom-designed travel journals featuring a cutout letter on the front. They even make wood pens as part of their custom sets. You know, pens. Those things we used to write with. Stationery from $3.50, pens from $35 and journals from $45; www.m-squarepress.com