The Bermuda Triangle of Planners – Planning My 2015 Planner

20150105 old way1 See this load of notebooks, this mess? That was how I was planning my days and maintaining my works-in-progress.  I had a month to view Kikki K planner, a week to view Kikki K planner, an A4 workbook and I was still using my Cozi app.  I knew I needed to practice what I preach and ensure that there was a place for everything so that everything can be in its place, so I decided to go back to paper.  My shopping list was for something that I could use for:

  • Appointments
  • To do lists (work AND family)
  • Ideas lists (blog, marketing, joint ventures, gift ideas)
  • Tracking (exercise, water consumption)

Now I wasn’t just after any old note or exercise book that could be bought from a supermarket.  If possible I also wanted it to be pretty or better still as it was primarily for work planning, for it to be branded. So I started some research and it was then that I fell down the proverbial rabbit hole into the world of “planners” and when I say rabbit hole I really mean the Bermuda Triangle – careful people there is no coming back!  There are Pinterest boards, Instagram accounts, YouTube Stations and numerous Facebook chat groups that all revolve around the topic of planners and the addiction of their users.  The size and scope of this world is mind boggling and it became evident that I would indeed need to PLAN my planner. Here are some of my first impressions 20150105 first impressions If you missed it, now would be the time to read ditching digital post especially for my definition of ‘planning’. For the purpose of brevity I will try to cover off these topics with images – all images linked to source (many are great planner related blogs or suppliers).

  1. Styles of planners I found & just some of the suppliers in the market
  2. Tip of the iceberg of accessories & suppliers
  3. My unicorn (as they say in the planning world)

STYLES ARC or disc bound – this planner requires a special punch, if you go down this path keep in mind it is a SYSTEM of products.  This one pictured is Martha Stewart. 20150105 arc or disc1 BOOK BOUND– I made that term up, basically what I am referring to here is your garden variety diary that can be purchased at any supermarket, department or specialty store.  I like this one from Typo 20150105 book bound1 COIL– from the outside this could also be considered garden variety, but the variations inside set them apart. 20150105 coil1 Just SOME of the popular suppliers of coil planners are:

RINGS – the most commonly recognisable of the ring style of planner is Filofax but there are MANY other suppliers too. 20150105 rings1 SOME of the other suppliers include

TRAVELLER’S NOTEBOOK – the traveller style of notebook planner is having a resurgence as the customising options are increasing 20150105 traveler1 SOME suppliers include

Both RING planners and COIL planners come with different closures like below AND come in almost any size you can imagine (personal, compact A4, A5, A6, slim) dimensions vary from supplier to supplier and measurements need to be crossed checked with the ‘names’ 20150105 clip close1 20150105 zipper1 20150105 button close1 ACCESSORIES – you know how I said rabbit hole and Bermuda Triangle well THIS is where you really start to feel in over your head INSERTS – for the RING planners you can find a plethora of customised inserts on Etsy just to name one source.  Pictured is DIY Fish inserts. 20150105 inserts1 STICKERS – decorating planners is where the addiction really rings true.  There are stickers to decorate and stickers to customise, you name it there is a sticker for it!  Again Etsy is the place to search, pictured stickers are suitable for Erin Condren Coil Planners ‘Made by Elissa’ 20150105 stickers1 TABS – another way to customise and decorate is with colourful tabs 20150105 tabs1 WASHI TAPE – this crafting tape has a plethora of uses in and out of planners, this colourful stash is from Washi Lane. 20150105 washi1 CHARMS – Just like the phone charm trend, you can customise your planner with charms.  Again Etsy is the place to be. 20150105 charms1 PAPERCLIPS – even your humble paperclip is decorative in the Triangle, this link will take you to a blog to learn how to make your own 20150105 paper clips1 Notable mentions go to these other crafty pursuits that don’t fit clearly into the above categories. PROJECT LIFE – a method of scrapbooking to display your precious memories, planner addicts use the project life kits to decorate their planners 20150105 project life1 MEMORY PLANNER – similar to project life, the 2015 binder has obvious appeal to this Filing Fairy 20150105 Memory planner1 ENTREPRENUER PLANNER – there is even a planner on the market designed especially to help entrepreneurs get organised and plan for a productive 2015.  This is a pretty amazing guide for any budding entrepreneur out there, one that Jo and myself used in December at our planning workshop. 20150105 Entrepreneur planner1 If you are still with me you might be wondering what I picked?  I can tell you that I second guessed myself a number of times.  I ordered samples of amazing leather from VDS as I considered a ring binder that I was going to design my own inserts for (but who has time for that!).  I ordered an Erin Condren Life Planner but it didn’t feel right (for me) the moment I opened it – it is now being lovingly used inside a Filofax by one of the Facebook chat group members I met online.  In the end what I went with is a Personal Planner. 20150105 mine1 Great customised features include:

  • DIY cover with an array of images or a photo of your choice – in my case I created a collage on picmonkey to use
  • Calendar layout (vertical or horizontal)
  • Elastic closure in colour of your choice
  • Font choices for title words
  • Option to have lines or no lines
  • Choose what month to begin and the calendar period of the planner
  • Every writing space can be blank, ruled, timetabled, or striped
  • Work, home, and workouts can all be slotted into various sections
  • The ability to import personal dates & birthdays from external sources – I love that birthday’s are in tidy type not my horrendous scrawl
  • Add individual modules on the bottom of your planner (ie: dinners, exams, to do lists, ideas)
  • Monthly & annual overviews
  • Back section pages can ber sheet music, address book, maps or colouring pages

So far the only negative I have found with the planner is on the site itself – there is a dodgy 3 digit password that you are unable to personalise so in designing my planner over time I had to reset my password 3-4 times. Truthfully I am not about to call it my “unicorn” as the planner addicts would say, I need some time to use it and get back into the swing of paper planning.  I am pretty sure that the time will come that I will need to move it into a ring planner as I imagine that I will run out of note paper pages before the year is out.  I also have my eye on the Plum Paper Designs for it’s 7 category layout but I am going to claw my way back out of the rabbit hole and swim back to safety out of the Bermuda Triangle of planners for now and actually get to work and USE it.  Meanwhile you might see the inside layout of my planner pop up on Instagram so be sure to follow The Filing Fairies. Congratulations for surviving this post – its sure been a marathon effort to research and write.  Your reward – a discount code to use on Personal Planners.  Simply email me mara@thefilingfairies.com.au and I will send you the code.* (code valid until Jan 31, 2015)

What planner do you use?

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2 thoughts on “The Bermuda Triangle of Planners – Planning My 2015 Planner

  1. Hi there, glad to hear that you liked your Personal Planner. I will forward your feedback regarding the 3 digit code to our web developer. Appreciate your honesty! 🙂

  2. Pingback: I Think I Have Found Planner Peace | The Filing Fairies

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