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Soooo, you thought I had given up on this crazy thing called bullet journaling, right? WRONG!
I am still at it, and it has changed over the months as I have tried (and failed, and tried again) new ways of creating my monthly pages and spreads. Don’t get me wrong, it is still far from what you will see if you look on Pinterest or Instagram. I swear there is a group of people out there who deliberately make gorgeous, Da Vinci-quality pages just to make the rest of us feel crappy. But hey, what’s life without doing something mediocre that brings you joy, amiright?!
So here is a very brief summary in photos of some of the different BuJo (that’s tradespeak for Bullet Journal- makes you sound cool and in-the-know) pages that I have done since I first began this journaling journey. I went for a Harry Potter theme for October because I am a tried-and-true Potter geek. I apologize for the awful photos. Hopefully by the next post I will have some better ones where you can see more detail.
Bullet Journal Spreads and Pages
If you remember from my June BuJo Daily/ Weekly spreads I started with a more traditional bullet style page.
However, I found that this did not allow me to see the true length of my days and how much flexibility I was allowing in my schedule. That’s why I decided to try this hourly blocked spread for October. I also did it in September with color coding, but that ended up looking too cluttered, so I settled on a simpler color coding scheme for October using yellow for after work hours and a series of highlighters over black ink for my daily tasks. I am sorry that it is hard to see the highlighter in the pictures. Someday I will improve my photography skills for this site.
All in all, I ended up going back to the traditional bullet style page for November because the hourly blocked spread took way too long to create. Bullet journaling is supposed to increase efficiency, not eat up a full day of your life working on putzy spreads.
However, the creative bug bit again in December, so I decided to try something completely new for me- a Dutch Door style spread. This was, by far, the most interesting spread to create, and also one of the most time consuming and frustrating. I had to manage to cut through multiple pages of the journal while leaving the top part intact. Here are pictures of my monthly page and the Dutch Door style weekly/daily page.
What do I love about it?
- It gives me TONS of space for each day, and the weekly boxes make it easy to see important events each week.
- It keeps my tracker separate but near each week so I don’t forget to use it.
- It looks COOL!
What don’t I love about it?
- It was a total pain in the neck to make, and I even messed up a page or two by cutting through too far with my Exacto knife.
- It’s not page-friendly (it uses up a lot of pages in the BuJo).
- When I am trying to schedule something it requires a lot of page flipping to find the right day.
Would I do it again? Probably not. Right now I am leaning toward finding either another boxed layout with a little more daily space, room for a tracker on each weekly page, and room for notes or a simple daily page spread.
So that’s my progress so far. As always, two steps forward, one step back. It doesn’t matter because working on it is so much fun and it’s amazing that it is useful, too.
In a traditional bullet journal people put indexes so that they can find pages easily, like special financial trackers, book lists, movie lists, weight loss trackers, and all kinds of stuff. I have found that I started an index and never followed through on it. For me, it’s a royal pain because my journal pages are not numbered (my new 2018 journal has pre-numbered pages- live and learn) and I don’t really want to take the time to add the numbers and then write it all in an index.
Here are some ways I am thinking of getting around that issue.
- Since I like the idea of ongoing trackers, I may simply get some repositionable page tabs for labeling special pages or sections of my new journal.
- I love the idea of using colored circle stickers (you know, the ones you use for pricing stuff at garage sales) as a color coding tab system for each month. Very cute, and inexpensive.
- The next evolution of this journal may end up being part of a full travel notebook system. That is a notebook cover, usually leather, that has elastic straps in it to bind together multiple notebooks into one journal. I love this idea because I tend to grab different notebooks for different tasks. For example, my BuJo is my go-to daily and weekly planner, tracker, and gratitude journal. However, I have not had enough room in it to work on my personal style/capsule wardrobe tracking or any other major projects. Those could easily use up a ton of my BuJo pages and, without an index, could get confusing and messy if done on a monthly basis. Having a travel notebook would allow me to have separate notebooks for separate projects. I could have my Bujo, a grid notebook for home projects, and lined notebooks for my capsule wardrobe work and plain old journaling.
If I have convinced you to start a BuJo in 2018, here are some resources:
Buy Bullet Journal Supplies On Amazon.Com
What you need to start…
- A Bullet Journal– You can go as inexpensive or as expensive as you want. Some of the hardcore BuJoers swear by certain notebooks, like the Leichtturm 1917. one of the main advantages of a nicer BuJo like this is that they tend to have heavier paper that doesn’t “ghost” or show through to the opposite side if you use markers or dark pens. My next BuJo is a Scribbles That Matter purchased on Amazon.com.
- Writing Pens– Once again, you really only need one good pen. Minimalist journalers tend to use one black ink pen and that’s it. My lovely husband recently turned me on to Pilot Frixion Erasable Pens. They come in standard blue and black as well as a whole array of colors, both marker-style and highlighters. Since I make a lot of mistakes, this was a no-brainer for me.
- A straight edge– ‘Nuff said. Find your ruler. Use it. Or find something else with a straight edge and use that.
- If you like circles, use a compass. Remember those thingys from high school geometry that you used maybe twice and then left to rust in a desk drawer? Yeah, that’s useful again.
- Finally, if you want to get artsy fartsy, there are squillions of colored markers, brush markers, stencils, fountain pens, watercolors, gel pens, colored pencils, stickers, washi tape and other supplies to jazz up your BuJo. Just type in ‘bullet journal supplies’ in a search window on Amazon.com and prepare to be amazed. These aren’t needed but they sure are fun.
- I almost forgot the most important thing- YOUR IMAGINATION (or Pinterest, Facebook groups, YouTube, and Instagram if you need a little push/shove/swift kick in the butt in this area).
If you really want to make things look cool, be sure to check out Pinterest and YouTube for creative lettering tutorials and other ways to doodle your way through your BuJo.
That’s all, folks! Leave a comment or a picture of your adventures in bullet journaling below. I would love to hear from you! Have a PrettyJoyful day!