Have you ever heard of Bullet Journals?  I have played around with decorating blank journals in the past, but didn’t realize they had an actual name and system.  Every time I have started to create one, I have just gone out and looked for a planner to purchase.  My current planner for this year is falling to pieces and I while I love it, I was on the hunt for a more durable one for August, when MY year begins.

But a funny thing happened while researching planners –  I came across these beautiful hand-drawn journals and I was intrigued.  Why put all that time into re-creating something you can buy at Target for $8?  I am not an artist, especially when it comes to drawing, but as I looked through Google, I could see that not everyone who had made one was a gifted illustrator.  It was inspiring and made me want to give it a shot.  I haven’t decided yet if they will actually make me more organized and productive or if it is just a beautiful way to journal, but the time I spent making one today was insanely rejuvenating and relaxing.

There are some gorgeous examples out there, but don’t let that intimidate you.  I am an A+ doodler, but that’s about it. Also, I never really understood the adult coloring book trend, but after spending an hour or so making my bullet journal, I get it. I totally get it.  There is something about creating beauty in the middle of a hectic day that simply makes you feel happier.

Other than providing a creative outlet, the Bullet Journal provides something that my regular planner does not – goal tracking.  I’m a firm believer in that you achieve what you track, so I set goals for everything, even fun with my kids.  I know that sounds crazy – but doing spontaneous things like flying a kite with your kids after school requires that you have a kite and snacks in the car on a day when there is no sports practice, all of which requires planning.  I don’t see the Bullet Journal replacing my virtual assistant, technology(Evernote, iCal, and Apple reminders), but I do see it providing what technology doesn’t give – mindfulness.

Here is What I Came Up With After an Hour…

Bullet Journals – History and Method

Apparently somebody named Ryder Carroll  developed the method and name, but of course illustrated journals have been around for thousands of years.  What makes these journals different is the method: There is a key denoting completed items, in progress items, appointments, and events, as well as an index of items you may want to reference throughout the year.  I got started by quickly reading through this website.

System, Supplies, and More Examples

I used a Canson notebook and a black Stabilo fine point pen, like the ones below.


Other great choices would be :



They have dots for lines, whereas I had to use a ruler when I wanted something to be straight.


I have also used these pens before. I love them and actually had them in mind for this project, but my kids used them for an art project awhile back. I need new ones now.

And Now for Some Gorgeous Inspiration….

Source: Instragram, @jess_studies

Source: Instagram, @tinyrayofsunshine

Source: Instagram, @mint.sprout
What do you think?  Have you ever tried a Bullet Journal?

**this post contains affiliate links, but every item is one I have used and recommend**