My advice to anyone who is starting a bullet journal and looking to see what materials they should get, is start with whatever you have. That goes for all supplies, from pens to notebooks. Depending on how often you use your journal, you can decide to branch out and find some new supplies!
I think the most important thing for bullet journaling is a notebook of some sort. Many would say that is all you need (and maybe a pencil) and I would agree with that statement. Your notebook is where everything is going to be. You can use any notebook that fits your preference. Think about how you want the pages to look. There are notebooks that come with dotted pages, lined pages, or squared pages. Do you want the pages to be white? Do you prefer a spiral notebook? Consider all your options before looking to purchase a new one.
Here are some popular options:
Leuchtturm1917 – A5 Hardcover (I have this one!)
Pens or Pencils
Whether you want to draw or write in your journal, a pen or a pencil is always necessary. I usually have a pencil on hand to sketch out my spreads and later go back with a pen or thin marker. One thing to keep in mind is the smudge of whatever you are writing with. Of course, you may decide to write completely in markers (or any other supply of your choice). Test out different supplies that you already have to see if any work for you. If not, do some research to find something that works best for what you are using the journal for.
I use markers to do many things in my journal. Fine tip markers can be used almost as you would a pen, to write notes and lists. Any basic colored markers can be used to add color to spreads and highlighters to emphasize certain tasks and dates. If you are looking to try out lettering, check out brush-tip markers or try using markers with a bendable tip.
Here are some popular options:
I didn’t start incorporating photos in my journal until about 4 weeks after I had starting my journal. These days, photos take up quite a bit of space in my spreads. They add color to a boring spread and allow you to get creative. I use sites like Tumblr or We Heart It to find photos that suit my personal style (whether they are of people or places) and try to create a color scheme for each weekly or monthly spread I do. You can even make moodboards and collages in your bullet journal with the photos you choose!
Tape can be both functional and decorational. I’ve been using double sided tape for as long as I’ve owned a bullet journal, but have recently decided to purchase a set of washi tape to see what the fuss is about. Washi tape is a great way to open space and can of course be used to stick down photos or extra notes. They are relatively inexpensive on most sites, and come in tons of different colors, patterns, and sizes. Who knew tape could be so interesting?
Here are some extras I like to use!
- Post-it’s : They are great for both temporary and permanent notes.
- Ruler : If you like straight lines, this is a must!
- Correction Tape : Cover up mistakes you’ve made instead of scribbling them out.
- Stickers : There is a sticker for everything! Tons of shops sell both functional and decorative stickers for planners and journals. Try them out!
- Brown Paper : I recently purchased a notebook full of brown paper () to rip up and tape in my spreads. I place them underneath photos to add texture and depth. You can use brown paper bags to achieve the same look.
It isn’t important how much you spend (or don’t spend) on materials for a bullet journal. If you decide to make purchases for your journal, do some research. There are so many videos and resources to check out before making any decisions. There are so many inexpensive options for supplies and spending money on “those fancy pens” isn’t always the best choice. What matters is how you use the materials you have. If you like the way your journal looks and works, then you’re set.