Plan Creatively | Choosing a Planner

BY Wita | 05/02/2015 | Plan & Organise
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I’m not exactly a newbie in the world of planners. Planners have always been my must-have item in my bag, as well as on my desk.
This year, I’m taking planning to the next level ever since I discovered the #planneraddict community. I have also started creating a few planner covers and journals which you can purchase from my etsy shop.
In conjunction to that, I though I should give you tips on how to personalise your planner creatively. If you are a planner expert, great, we might be able to exchange some great planner personalisation tips. And if you’re just dipping your toes into the wonderful world of planners, then you’re in for a treat!

For the first post of Plan Creatively series, I’m going to talk about how to choose a planner. There are endless options for you to choose from. Everything depends on your lifestyle, your budget, your preferences in terms of materials and sizes, and how much creativity and effort you’d like to put into your planner.

But no matter what you choose, trust me, you’ll have a lot of fun with it.

1. Personalised Planners

Guide to Choosing a Planner

You should buy this if:

  • You don’t feel like doing lots of DIY personalisations and let the designer personalise the planner for you
  • You need a planner that fits your lifestyle

Last year, I bought this diary from Tiny Me which I really loved. Tiny Me is an Australian stationery company that enable you to personalise your purchases.

The best thing about Tiny Me’s personalised diary is that you are able to have columns with names or categories of your own choosing on each weekly page spread. They are really good for someone who juggles with different businesses or a working mom. You can also use it as a family diary!

Another personalised planner that seems to be popular is Erin Condren Life Planners. After watching review videos about EC’s Life Planner, it seems to have a lot of value for your money, as they also include stickers, monthly dividers, birthday calendars and the coil binder seems really sturdy.

You might like: Tiny Me Personalised Diaries, Erin Condren Life Planners, LetterLoveDesigns Day Planners

2. Designer Planners

Guide to Choosing a Planner
You should buy this if:

  • You’re a designer, business owner or a freelancer
  • You’re giving a gift for a very special person

I received a Whitney English Day Designer planner for my birthday last year, and I’m using it for this year’s planner. Designer planners are fancy. They are beautifully designed planners created using good quality materials (especially the cover) and also typically very heavy. Don’t expect to carry them around for too long. As the creators of these planners usually target business owners, some of them come with goal setting pages. Just like any other designer things, these planners are not cheap, but you do get what you paid for.

You might like: Whitney English Day Designer, Simplified Planner by Emily Ley, Kate Spade, Jonathan Adler

3. Pretty Planners

Guide to Choosing a Planner

You should buy this if:

  • You don’t care about personalisation but you still want a pretty looking planner
  • You don’t get bored easily

Before this year, my pocket planner has always been a “pretty planner”. Pretty planners are planners or diaries that comes with a design theme, and the pages are beautifully designed and/or illustrated. The problem with this type of planner is… they are so beautiful that you have no room for your own creativity. Also, it’s not a good idea if you’re someone who get bored of something really easily, like me. No matter how much I love pretty planners, I will see another pretty planner that I like and feel like changing within a few months. However, I do know a few friends who have been using the same planner design for years and don’t seem to get bored.

You might like: Kikki K: cute collection – why not collection – sweet collection , Frankie, Hello Coco Diaries

4. Binder Planners

Guide to Choosing a Planner | DESIGN IS YAY!

You should buy this if:

  • If you want to personalise your planner… DIY style
  • If you want to buy printable pages and planner accessories to personalise your planner
  • If you want versatility and freedom to change, edit, add the content of your planner
  • If you want a range of different choices in terms of colours, materials and size
  • If you want to be able to change the outer look of your planners many times a year
  • …. everyone. Basically everyone.

I might sound bias here, but I do feel that binder planners are the best type of planner. My planning addiction started when I purchased Kikki.K personal and pocket planner. I have to admit, I didn’t get the fascination at first. I wondered how can people get so addicted to these plain looking planners? Binder planners might look plain on the cover, but there are endless options to decorate and personalise the inside. There’s no reason for anyone not to like a good binder planner.

“I don’t really care about designing or personalising my planner. I just want a planner to plan my days”
Good! Binder planner usually comes with very minimal design and basic pages

“I do love personalised planners, but I’m not crafty and I don’t have the skills to design the pages myself”
Lucky you, just search “personalised planner printables” on etsy, and you will find TONS of personalised planner pages, ready for you to download or receive in the mail.
Shop my personalised planner pages : digital file or printed.

Guide to Choosing a Planner | DESIGN IS YAY!

Guide to Choosing a Planner | DESIGN IS YAY!

“Even though there are so many nicely-designed planners out there, but none of them seem to be just right for me, or I will get bored of one planner after using it for a few months. I also like to change/add/move things around, and my biggest problem is changing too many things that I have to rip the pages out of my planners!”
(that is me, by the way) Then binder style planner is your solution.

Binder planner comes in 3 sizes – A5, Personal and Pocket. They are normally leather-bound, but I have seen some non-leather materials as well. The pioneer brand of binder planner is Filofax due to their vast range of style. However, Australians would most likely prefer to use Kikki.K planners. Other than the fact that we can find Kikki.K in any major cities in Australia (or even in smaller country towns like Bowral), Kikki.K stuff are good in quality, affordable and the design are beautiful.

You might like: Kikki K: Kikki K, Filofax, Webster’s Pages

So, what type of planner is most suitable to your lifestyle?

If you like this post, you should also check out : My Kikki.K Personal Planner SetUp

  • I’m not sure how I found your blog, but after browsing a couple of posts I’m really intrigued and thinking more into the personalized printable pages. I’ve used an Erin Condren for years and Plum Paper this past year. Do you know approximately how much it costs to print enough pages to last a year? I would most likely have it done at an office supply store. Thank you. :)

    • Hello!
      I actually have never printed my own daily pages as I’m too lazy :D The only ones I print on my own are the extra pages, such as blog planning or expenses page.
      I get my current daily page from they are SO affordable and cute!