My Planner Essentials – Planner Starter Kit
“I’m addicted to all things planner, paper, stationary!” There, I admitted it – so commit me to planner paper anonymous… teehee! I think planning and paper are fun things to help keep organized and even relieve stress, so I enjoy it tremendously. While I use many different things to keep me on task and my planner pretty, I think it’s an individual choice for many. I want to share with you a starter kit or list of planner essentials and supplies to get you on your way. Whether it be for pretty planning or just to have some supplies on hand, I hope this post helps you on your journey.
Check out my video as I walk you through my favorite planner goodies and essentials (embedded below), or click here to watch directly on YouTube.
- Kikki K Time Planners or Personal Planners: These are binder style planners that allow you to customize by being able to remove, replace or add inserts to your heart’s content.
- Filofax: A favorite of many, Filofax is a brand name most planner lovers alike are familiar with. Known for their quality and well made binders, you can expect a planner that will last for years with proper care. Similar in size to the Kikki K’s,
- Erin Condren Life Planners: (ECLP) A popular planner among the Planner Community. The ECLP’s are great for those that love pretty planning but that also want to have something easy to use. It’s a coil bound planner and while you can tear out pages or use coil clips to put things in, it is different from a binder planner when it comes to reuse and customization. Interested in the ECLP? Click here to get a $10 off coupon.
- KIT – Keeping It Together Planner: I discussed this planner in a post and video last year and it is a coil bound planner similar to that from ECLP. I enjoy this planner though it is a bit more bulky than an Erin Condren planner and costs about the same. These planners are made from a small company who sells on Etsy and they offer lots of writing room, quotes each day and everything a blogger or planner lover would need.
- Punctuate Planner – Barnes & Noble: These handy little planners come in all kinds of styles, sizes and price. The small sized ones that I use usually cost about $5.00 and include inserts. They are binder style and you can reuse them. Punctuate also offers paper planners or a variety of calendars for your needs. At an affordable cost, this would be great for students or someone starting off with planning.
Those are just a few planners you can find through out your planner search. I have a few others like Macaron Planners which comes from China, LoveDoki Books (also from China and various sellers) as well as ones from Hello Kitty, Franklin Covey and Day Timer. Each one can be used for various things and offer you a plethora of uses for years to come. If you decide to opt for a binder style planner, remember – if you take care of it, you can get years of use out of it. I have a Franklin Covey that I use that is over 10 years old. Not huge on leather or the style and just need something basic? See if you can find a binder that will work for you size and ring wise. The clear binder (pictured below) is one that I love to store stickers and unused inserts, it was reasonably priced and works well as a planner too should I decide to use it as such.
Choosing the planner is just the beginning but making sure you have all the proper accessories, that’s the fun part. Of course you need things like pens and other items to keep you on your planning discovery. Here is a list of a few things I like to have on hand when planning or things I make sure to purchase if I’m out.
Pens – Of course you need some writing equipment. I use a variety of pens in my planners but since I color code much of what I write, I’m constantly using pens that have a similar color range. My favorites include:
- Staedtler Triplus Fineliner Pens (I love the 20 pack)
- Paper Mate Flair Pens (these are affordable, easily found in stores and great for color coding – though they can bleed through some paper types)
- Japanese or Korean Style Fine Pens – 0.38mm (again, I love fine tipped pens)
- Expo Wet Erase Vis-a-Vis Markers (since I use a lot of laminated lists in my binders – these pens allow me to erase the writing with water)
- Sharpie Markers (again, since I have laminated lists, I use these and erase them with an eraser once I’m done to reuse again).
There are a number of pens available for use, it all depends on your preference, what you like and how you’ll use them. I hear Frixon pens are great too, but I don’t yet own one.
Sticky Notes, Page Tabs – You can get a variety of sticky notes and page tabs in all sizes, colors and designs now a days. Use your imagination with this one and look for what will work for you, your budget and your style.
Page Markers, Bookmarks, Paperclips (anything to mark your pages or your place) – This is fun in that you can create your own as well as find awesome and fun designs through out the web and in stores. I love to make my own paperclips, page markers and paper clips, but I also find awesome Etsy shops that do great ones as well. Search on Etsy for Page Markers or Planner paper clips and see what is available.
Journaling Cards, Stationary, Quote Cards or Project Life Cards – These are not a necessity, but if you are looking to add some inspiration or a little pretty to your planning, see if you can find these cheap and try it out. I found a book of Phrase Cards at Walmart for under $6.00 and I also like to take scrapbook paper and write in my own quotes (or stamp them) and insert into my planner. The options are endless, so use this opportunity to unwind your creative side.
Washi Tape & Stickers – I am addicted to Washi Tape and have a pretty large selection to choose from. I think Washi Tape is my lazy way of decorating, because I can always add pretty to my planner with a bit of washi without going too in detail and feel like I’ve decorated it. Washi has been my favorite go-to for pretty planning and it’s versatile in many ways. You can find Washi in all sizes, widths and even now – shapes, since many are showing up die cut and not just regular tape shaped. You can use them for a variety of purposes, including decorating your planner. Find them at your local dollar store or anywhere that sells them and have fun. Stickers, well you can get those everywhere and for everything. Find a sticker sheet or two, or three that makes you smile and use it to decorate your planner till your heart’s content. You can find “Planner stickers” and washi on sites like Etsy, Amazon and Ebay. I make and print a lot of my own planner stickers, but some of my favorite Etsy shops for stickers are:
There are a few extra goodies you can have on hand – but like everything I discussed here, they are certainly not required or needed. Here are a few and what I use them for:
- Scrapbook Paper – I love to create my own dashboards and dividers as well as my own journaling cards. Scrapbook paper is fun to allow you to customize what you want and make use of your binder in your own way.
- Birthday, thank you or note cards – while not required in any way, these are fun to use to input sweet designs in your planner. I also love using the envelopes. I punch holes in them and use them to keep stickers or receipts.
- Laminating machine and/or paper cutter – you can certainly use scissors (oops – I didn’t mention that one above) and you can find laminating sheets like those from Scotch or 1M, but I find both useful and I use them often. Search around and see what works best for you and your budget.
- Tape Adhesive – you can find these at any store in the scrapbook or arts and craft sections. It’s an easy to roll out adhesive that allows you to bond or attach things inside your planner. I love using these for everything I would tape down – they are permanent and secure.
- Gift bags, gift wrap, etc. – You obviously don’t need these, but should you have one with a design you like, save it and turn it into a decoration in your planner. My current dashboard (the roses) is a gift bag I got at Target that I laminated to protect. You never know what you can find.
- Stamps and Stamp Ink Pads – My main planner stamps come from StudioL2E and if you are a planner lover like I am, you will love their Plan-It Stamps and List It stamps as well as the rest they offer. They are reasonably priced and pretty awesome. You can find a variety of traditional wooden block stamps or clear stamps from a variety of stores as well as the ink pads. Again, this is optional but the options are endless.
Remember, getting organized with a planner or even pretty planning is all about creativity and making products and tools work for you and your needs. Everything I listed and discussed here is not in any way required or needed to get the job done. A basic planner with basic necessities like a pen will get the job done just as well. I love pretty planning, though I find that some days I don’t have enough time to do so. Pretty planning allows me to get creative and it also inspires me to keep up with my planner, look at it daily and get in my groove. If you find that you want to get started with planning, but even with a nice planner and some fun pens – you just can’t get in the habit of looking at it everyday… try pretty planning and see if that will work. Take a sticker or some washi tape and have a little fun. The options are endless and the end result is something you created.
Are you a basic planner, a planner nerd or a pretty planner? What works for you? I hope this post and video helped you on your planning journey. Have fun and plan away!
Disclaimer: Through out this post there may be affiliate links or referral links. Some of the products discussed or mentioned in this post were sent to me for feature or consideration while others were purchased by me with my own money. While that may be the case, all opinions are 100% unbiased and honest.