Hey hey, it’s MJ,
I have been Bullet journaling to various degrees of success since 2018, that doesn’t feel like it’s been that long ago but it also feels like it’s been about 30 years since then. What I would give to go back to early 2018 and warn myself of what was to come and hope that somehow my timeline wouldn’t still shift into this hellscape we are currently in, I try not to swear but man y’all 2020 has just taken me by the front of my shirt and punched me in the face; repeatedly.
That is not the point of this post though but I like my stream of consciousness moments on my blog because it gives all of you reading this a view into my brain, it’s a scary place sometimes. I also just had my first Pumpkin Cream Cold Brew from Starbucks of the season and I am jazzed up on caffeine!
I have been Bullet Journaling for almost three years now and that is so hard to believe but this year is the first year where I have actually done all 12 months and I am happy to say that my 2020 Bullet Journal (you can see it so far in updates 1 and 2) is complete.
What supplies do I use for my bullet journal?
Medium (A5) Leuchtturm 1917 Dotted Journal:
They make a “bullet journal” version now but I don’t like it so I just buy the normal journal they will run you like $20 at Barnes and Noble, that’s where I get mine. I have had various colors over the years my first was Berry, second was I think a shade called Nordic Blue which was a nice icy light blue, this year is green but it’s not on the Barnes and Noble website anymore so I had to look on the Lecuhtturm website and it’s called Fresh Green, and next year is Powder which is a baby pink. This was the one that was suggested to me by a number of blogs on the internet when I was considering Bullet Journaling at the end of 2017. Thank you Pinterest for getting me hooked on another thing.
Fine line Pens in Various colors:
I bought mine at Michaels when I started and they don’t actually have them anymore but the brand doesn’t really matter as long as it is colors you like and will use in your journal. I use mine for my habit trackers, my mood tracker, and a whole bunch of various other things in my bullet journal because I love colored pens and these are fine line markers so they are great and they don’t bleed through the paper. Mine came in a set of 20 and I think they were under $10 so find ones that work for your purposes, you don’t have to buy the fancy ones to get good results. Store them tip down they least longer! Sharpie also makes a nice selection of colored Sharpie pens which I also use!
Markers in Various Colors:
Again from Michaels in like late 2017 so they are old but they still work for what I need them to do, I use them for covers, for mood trackers, and for a lot of my large lettering. You do not want a large tipped marker though, medium tip at most and you may want to try them to make sure they don’t go through the paper and bleed onto the other side because that’s not fun. I store these tip down as well!
I found pastel highlighters at Wal-Mart in 2018 and have not been able to find them there since which makes me upset because if I need more I will have to order them. I got a set of six from Mild Color and I really like them because I use them to highlight important things as well as making sure I know what week I am in. I use these for more than my bullet journal but they are used primarily there. When I replace them I will probably go with Zebra brand because they also have some really nice pastel highlighters.
Does not matter the brand! I have a set that I got for Christmas a few years ago after salivating over it for years but I have a set of 150 Prismacolor colored pencils and I love them. I was so afraid to use them because they are very expensive but I used them for almost every cover if not every cover this year and a few last year and I love them so much! Crayola, RoseArt, any of the regular brands work just as well but I am going to use what I have because I love them so much.
A straight edge:
I didn’t use a ruler until I started on working on my Bullet Journal for next year, I don’t even use a ruler I use the edge of the card that comes with my IPSY bags, it’s folded in half but it’s the perfect size for my Bullet Journal, it makes things look cleaner and I am kicking myself for not using one sooner because it made things SO MUCH easier!
I have never bought a full priced tube or pack of Washi Tape I just wait for them to go on clearance and buy them then. I use it for mostly my habit trackers to make the pages look nice but I love the fun of washi tape.
Stickers and Things:
There are a lot of premade journals out there, I love the versatility of a bullet journal because I can create as I go but I always have a bunch of stickers and things at my disposal, some come from those other planners, again clearance section! Why spend more than you have to, I mean really. I love stickers and tiny note pads, I don’t use them too frequently in my Bullet Journal but I have them so I can when I want.
A Good Black Fine Liner Pen:
This is the MOST IMPORTANT thing for your Bullet Journal, you do a lot of outlining and all of the shapes are mostly a fine line black pen, all of the habit trackers, the weekly spreads, the daily tasks, the calendars that I do, and most of the covers have black outlines or sections and I use a black Sharpie Pen. I love this pen, it is the only one I use for my Bullet Journal and I have used about four since I started Bullet Journaling, I know the one I am using right now is already half gone because I already did the basic pages and layouts for next year so eventually I will have to get out another one. The tip does wear down on this one so the lines for written words sometimes get a little thick but you can always have a second one out just for lettering, which I should but don’t.
You don’t have to spend a bunch of money if you want to start Bullet Journaling, it’s supposed to be fun and creative instead of buying a planner that isn’t customizable to you, I love the freedom of a Bullet Journal because there is no set standard you can do whatever you want with it. I used to buy a planner every year because I needed it for school but now that I am out of school (I still have dreams about missing work during my master’s program and I have been out of it for over two years) I have the choice to allow my creativity one more outlet. In college I swore by the Lilly Pulitzer planners and I still would if I was in college because I loved them and they were what I needed at the time. Planners have become such a big craze in the last several years and I got caught up in it. You learn with every new planner, every new year brings new challenges and insights that you learn from years past.
You can check out all of my other Bullet Journal related posts, I will list them so you can click at will! What I did Differently in my 2019 BuJo, Some of my fave 2018 pages, Some of my fave 2019 pages, and a random update from last year.
Do you Bullet Journal? Any tips or tricks I am missing that you swear by? Let me know!
Hope y’all have a great start to your week and I will see you with another post soon!