Pretty Purple Bullet Journal Tour

Hello, dears!

I recently filled up my last bullet journal and got to start a new one – YAY! It’s so much fun to set up a new bujo, isn’t it? Since purple is my favorite color, I decided to go all out and make EVERYTHING violet-toned. I loooove how it turned out, and I hope you enjoy it too!

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Bullet Journal Setup 2019

Hello, dears!

HAPPY NEW YEAR! Now that it’s officially 2019, I decided it’s time to try a new layout for my bullet journal. 😉 This time, I went with something super simple but still pretty – namely, washi tape! 😀 I got a bunch of GORGEOUS tapes for Christmas (more on that in a later post), and I had so much fun using them throughout this spread!

I kept the first part of my bujo simple so I had more time to work on… some exciting Etsy news pertaining to bullet journals. 😉 More on that at the end of the post. Keep reading if you like bujos or planners! 😉

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Setting Up My New Bullet Journal + Tips & Tricks

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Hello, dears!

I’ve been looking forward to posting this for quite a while! I recently used up my second bullet journal and bought a new one, which I absolutely LOVE so far! Today I’ll show you how I set it up, as well as some tips and tricks I’ve learned along the way.

For those of you who don’t know, bullet journaling is kind of like a planner, but it’s more of a system than a certain notebook you buy. Part of its appeal is the limitless options for customization, which makes the system pretty hard to define. But basically it’s a way to keep all your lists and notes and journals in one notebook. Click here to see the BuJo website for more information. And reading the rest of this post might help too. 😉

THE MATERIALS

To begin with: the actual journal itself. I got this Essentials grid dot journal from Amazon, and it’s my favorite bullet journal I’ve owned so far!

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Its features include…

  • a hardcover, easy-to-manage size of 8 1/4″ X 5 3/4″
  • light, evenly spaced grid dots for writing/drawing guidelines
  • decently thick paper
  • an elastic strap to keep the notebook closed
  • a ribbon bookmark
  • a paper pocket on the inside back cover

The cover is kind of a boring black, but you can decorate it with washi tape, metallic Sharpies, paint pens, etc. So far I just put a strip of washi tape down the spine and wrote a title with a white gel pen.

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SETTING IT UP

My supply list for setting up my bujo includes the following:

  • Essentials grid dot journal
  • washi tape
  • ruler
  • micron pens (sizes 04 & 08)
  • regular pencil
  • Pilot G-2 07 black ballpoint pen

Here’s my simple cover page. I’ve always kept my bullet journals pretty simple because I do most of my journaling in the evening before bed, when I don’t have a lot of time to make it fancy. This BuJo is very minimalistic, but I still think it’s pretty. 🙂

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On the first spread I have a “Fonts” page on the left and a “Quotes” page on the right. (Well obviously. XD)

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I do my Bible journal in the evening as well, where I copy down my favorite verse from the chapter I read. I added the “Fonts” page because I often run out of interesting font ideas. 😛 Do you guys have any handwritten font suggestions? I also like having a place to put quotes I find in the books I’m reading, hymns I’m singing, songs I’m listening to, etc.

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Ugh, you can tell there’s no more softbox lighting here. XD

I love this page! Maybe because it took forever. XD Seriously though, it was one of my most time-consuming spreads. :[] I allowed myself space to fill in 17 books each month, but sadly I don’t think I’ll fill them all up. In my last journal I did read 17 books in a month (in May), but I only read 4 books in January and March. *ashamed look*

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Here we have “Birthdays” on the left and combination of a wishlist and prayer list on the right. I was so happy I thought of this 12-layer cake for the birthday page format, but… it didn’t turn out quite as cake-like as I’d hoped. XD Oh well, it still works fine. For the opposite page, I divided the page in two because in my past bullet journals I didn’t use a whole page for either subjects.

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I kept this whole spread blank for writing down notes – ideas I thought of, questions to ask pen pals, blog posts I want to make… anything else that doesn’t fit in my other pages.

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The left page is available for either more notes or a new list. The right page is a place for my goals, whether unrealistic or practical. 😉 It’s pretty much a long-term to-do list.

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Now for my monthly set-up! I used my 08 micron to write the name of the month in a font that’s both simple and pretty (are you starting to see a theme here? XD). I’m also going to use the gorgeous navy washi tape for each new month. I thought about adding doodles of important happenings on each month’s cover page as I go along, but I’m not sure I want to ruin the nice clean page now. XD Maybe I can use the blank page to the left?

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On the left I have a sort of monthly overview, and on the right I start in with my daily journaling. I’ve never used a calendar before, but I think it will be nice to see at a glance what important events are coming up. Monthly goals are pretty self explanatory, so…

The right page is the part of my bujo I use the most, and the only daily section I have. I don’t have habit trackers for everyday chores and such because, well, I do them every day anyway. 😛 Instead, I just write a few sentences about what I did/what happened that day, and then make a short to-do list for tomorrow.

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And that about wraps it up! Before you go, here are a few things I’ve learned from bullet journaling so far:

TIPS & TRICKS

  • If you make your BuJo too complicated, chances are you just won’t use it. (Or if you’re like me you’ll still use it and just be frustrated. XD) The time it takes to set up a page should correspond with how long it will last. Time-consuming pages are just fine for spreads that will last all bullet journal long (like my “birthdays” page, for instance), but don’t go as all-out for pages you’ll have to remake each month. For daily things, I like to keep it as simple and easy as possible.
  • Make a halfway mark in pencil for ease-of-use. It’s nice to have things centered, but it’s sooo tedious to count the dots and divide them up each time you make a new page. Instead, do that just once, and mark the center on the edges of the pages for a great shortcut. Now you can check the mark before centering your titles.

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  • Use washi tape for easy pops of color, and to mark important pages. Washi tape is a nearly fool-proof way to add color and interest to your bujo. If you wrap the tape over the edge of the page like I did with my “June” page, you can see it even when you close the journal.
  • Get a bullet grid journal and one with a pocket for random lists. I suppose I’m a bit biased since I’ve only used a bullet grid journal, but I HIGHLY recommend them over just a regular lined notebook. It makes measuring and writing things a whole lot easier, plus it looks prettier! I’m also really enjoying the paper pocket at the back of the Essentials journal. It’s great for holding lists that I thought of after I already set everything up, or temporary lists that I don’t need to put in the BuJo anyway.

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Hopefully this post was enjoyable and helpful! Do you have a bullet journal, and if so, do you have any tips for me? What lists/page is your favorite in YOUR BuJo? What was your favorite of my pages?

Thanks so much for reading, dears, and please have a lovely day!

***Allison***

Hand Lettering + Font Inspiration

Hello, dears!

Unfortunately I couldn’t make my Art Lab post on Friday, but I have time (and data XD) to do it today! In this post I’ll show you a few tips and tricks on lettering, plus show you plenty of font inspiration to copy or use to think up your own fonts. (Because I usually run out of ideas after, like, three fonts. XD) So. Ready? GO!

Technique: Hand Lettering

Hand lettering is super fun, and also very useful for when you want to spiff up an envelope or gift tag or any number of things.

Fonts

Let’s start with one of my the most common and prettiest fonts in handlettering: fake calligraphy. Lovely name, isn’t it? 😛 That’s because it allows you to get a calligraphy-like effect without using any special calligraphy tools. It’s also super simple to write. See?

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Step One: Write out your desired words in the neatest cursive you can.

Step Two: Find the downstrokes. Downstrokes are the places in a letter where you move your pen down the paper, like the little pink arrows show in the picture.

Step Three: Widen and color in the downstrokes to get the look of a calligraphy pen. Ta-daa! Pretty, isn’t it?

This is a great base font, especially when paired with a simple sans or serif.

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So basically sans doesn’t have the little “tags” on the ends of the letters and serif does. I like writing all caps sans and all lowercase serif. 🙂

And now, here are a bunch more simple fonts I wrote out to look through and use as inspiration or copy yourself. Which is your favorite?

Accents

Now that you got some fonts under your… um, pen XD, it’s fun to add little accents and flourishes to fill in the space beside the lettering. Here are a few ideas to get you started, and you can find a bunch more on Pinterest and the “Doodly Accents” section of PicMonkey. 🙂

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Inspiration

Still need some more ideas to get your creativity flowing? Here are a few of my recent (and not-so-recent) lettering pieces.

You can hand letter with any medium you wish! Here I used my watercolor brush pens which are super fun for lettering.

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Quote from Jane Austen’s Emma

For this one I used a blue notebook marker + a blue ballpoint pen. I love adding vines to letters, but it does take a bit of time and patience. 😉 Another fun thing to do for fonts with thick, solid bars of color like below is to add zigzags or circles or other patterns inside the bars for more interest.

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Quote from Nancy Pearcey’s Total Truth

This is the first page in my second bullet journal. I like how the mix of colored pencil and ballpoint pen looks together. 🙂

Not quite the right season for this, but hey, it’s lettering! XD I think it looks really neat to overlap some letters, like I did with the ‘y’ and the ‘o’. Also a little extra line of a different color beside the downstrokes adds a shadow effect and makes it look more special.

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And lastly, a lovely Bible verse that I copied completely in blue ballpoint pen. (By the way, these Pilot G2 pens are practically THE BEST PENS EVERRR. They write super smoothly and you can get them in a range of point sizes.)

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That’s all I have for today, so hopefully you’re inspired by now. 😀 If you did make some hand lettering inspired by this post, we’d love to see it! Check out how to help us fill our art gallery here.

***Allison**

A Peek into My Bullet Journal

Heyyyy guys!

I’ve been thinking of doing this post for quite a while now, but just haven’t posted, perhaps partly because there are so many other posts like this that I didn’t feel it was necessary. 😛 But I do enjoy looking at BuJo posts, plus it’s fun to see people’s different styles, so here I am!

I just got my second bullet journal the other day and it felt like I knew better how to set it up this time, so I thought it’d be a good time to show you guys.

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What is a bullet journal? In brief, it’s a notebook to keep track of pretty much everything – to-do lists, habit trackers, favorite quotes, books to read, cleaning schedules – really whatever you need! They’re really more of a customizable system than a physical notebook. You can lean more about them here.

The hardest part of setting this up was finding a balance between pretty and practical. I love all the gorgeous bullet journal formats I’ve seen on Pinterest, but I also don’t really want to spend twenty minutes a day just on the header/design, you know? But since I’m who I am, I obviously wanted it to be at least a little bit aesthetic. XD

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I’m pretty happy with the layout I ended up with. Hopefully it will help you guys too if you’re setting up a bullet journal for the first time! Although just a note: there is no one way to set up a bullet journal. That’s the great thing about these journals – they can be whatever you need them to be!

Oh wait, before I start, I bought this bullet grid journal from Amazon. You can see it here. It’s pretty, cheap, and also pretty cheap. 😛 The grids aren’t very precise (if you flip through the book, the dots move toward the left a little bit), and the paper is pretty thin, but it’s good enough for me. (I know I’m using “pretty” a lot but I don’t know what else to use. Help.) You can make any ol’ notebook into a BuJo, but I really like having the faint dots there to use as guidelines while they’re not as distracting as whole lines.

This is the first really customizable spread, after two pages of inspiration printed in the front of the notebook.

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Your key basically helps you keep track of what different icons you use and what they mean. This is helpful for things like to-do lists especially. (Also “migrated” means moved to the next day/month/list/etc.)

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Banners are a fun and easy way to spiff up your header. The grid format makes it easy to draw them. I wrote my header in flowy cursive and added a touch of purple colored pencil.

You’ll want to number your pages and write them in your index so you can quickly find whatever you need. That way if you think of a new list or topic you want to add, you can just use the next blank page and write it down in your index.

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Of course I needed a pretty hand-lettered quote in here somewhere. XD

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Okay, now we’re getting to the main part. Remember my discussion of pretty vs. practical? I decided to spend a little more time making the permanent pages pretty (like lists that will last me the whole time I have this journal), and keep the repetitive pages simple (like my daily entries). The beginning of my journal is mostly permanent lists.

I don’t particularly like this page’s layout, so I would suggest looking up a better one on Pinterest. XD But anyway, I really enjoy having a books-read-tracker so I can look back on how many and what books I’ve read in a month. So far I’ve only read one. Heh heh.

Oh, and since I filled my last journal in about six months, I formatted this to last the same amount of time. So I have six bookshelves for six months.

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I use a task box instead of a bullet point so I can see the prayers God answers. ♥

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I didn’t have this page in my last journal but I wanted to add it now. This is a pretty simple layout compared to some, but it’s still pretty (at least I think). Not perfect (UGH SMUDGES 😡 ), but nice. I’m planning to write the birthdays in the cupcake wrapper first and then in the icing if I fill that up. You could also write your family’s birthdays in one section and your friends’ in another.

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I use this page a lot too, to record all the post ideas I have. (This is an incomplete list, by the way.) I decided to make two columns since I used up my last blogging page way too fast.

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This one’s not very important, but it is fun. 🙂 Especially around the holidays. As you can see, I mostly want art stuff. XD

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I use this page as a sort of big picture to-do list. It’s currently filled with art projects, although not in this picture. XD

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And my last page is Notes. My thoughts/notes/ideas overflowed my allotted one page in my last BuJo, so I came better prepared this time. XD

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Before we move on to the next section, I just wanted to say that I think it’s a good idea to keep a few pages blank before you start your daily or monthly section, just in case you want to add more lists later.

Okay, we’re done with the lists. I like to draw a little “cover” for each month. This is one of the parts I had trouble with in my last journal – when I came to the next month, I usually wasn’t ready to sit down and draw an elaborate header for it, so I just kind of scribbled something.

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This time, I decided to write each month’s name in simple (fake) calligraphy in one corner so I could fill in the rest of the page later with a picture, or just add a small doodle like I did here.

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My my, that “b” got a little out of hand. XD

 

Alright, now onto the daily section! I personally don’t have a need for a habit tracker or anything broader than a daily journal. I usually write the month, date, and day in cursive first. Then a bullet point and a few sentences to a paragraph about my day (no, I don’t record any secret thoughts or that sort of thing really XD). I also record what post I’ve written if I’ve posted, and my to-do list for the next day, which is my favorite part. 😉 The picture below is from… well October, obviously. Heh.

I find that it really helps me enjoy the day more and stay more focused if I have some goals to look forward to, however small. Sometimes I even just write “Draw” as one of my goals if I can’t think of anything more important. And here’s where I use my key.

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I promise my days aren’t always that boring. XD

And that’s about it! I hope you enjoyed looking through my bullet journal! Did you find any good ideas or inspiration? Do you have any tips or inspiration for me? Do you have or want a bullet journal?

***Allison***

Birthday Harvest

HA HA do you like my title? XD I don’t really like the term “birthday haul” because it seems kind of greedy or something, but that’s just my weird opinion. So anyway, I looked up synonyms for “haul” and found “harvest.” 😛 And there you have the story of my title.

Ahem. Let’s move on, shall we? Oh wait, before we start, I must say that I just really wanted to brag about my presents and how many I got and how great they were and… I’M JUST KIDDING I’M JUST KIDDING! Goodness, don’t look so shocked. XD Heh heh, but no, I am not trying to do the aforementioned, just in case you were wondering. I’m posting this because I personally like reading birthday posts myself and because I thought you guys might enjoy one too. 🙂

Okay, now we can start! 😀 By the way, these gifts are in no particular order. I just put them all on the table and grabbed what was handy first. XD

Ooh look! It’s a bullet journal! My mom and dad gave me this and it’s so pretty! I’ve actually only heard about them recently, but I thought a BuJo would be quite helpful. I’m still getting the hang of it, but I really like it so far! I think it’s more of a system than a thing, which is nice because you can customize it pretty much however you want. Do you think I should do a bullet journal post sometime?

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My friend (who has a blog here) gave me a bag of luscious chocolate truffles. OHHHH YUMMINESS! Enough said. XD

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My cousins gave me these lovely watercolor brush pens. They’re so neat! They’re kind of like a marker but with a paintbrush tip. They actually color more like ink than watercolor, but if you use the waterbrush that comes with it (see it there on the right side?) you can get a more watercolor-y effect. What I really like about these is how fine the tips are.

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I thought maybe I should show you an example of how they work…

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My Grammy and Grandaddy gave me this wonderful sketchbook. I love it! It has 128 nice, thick pages. I used the watercolor brush pens on it and they didn’t bleed through, although you could kind of see the drawing on the other side. I can’t wait to fill it up! 😀

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Another thing I really like about the sketchbook is how flat it is when I open it. Some sketchbooks are always wanting to close up on you, but this one doesn’t!

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This thingy came along with the sketchbook. It’s rather neat and pretty, but I have no clue what it is. XD It’s obviously a ruler, but it looks like it’s meant to be something else too. I thought maybe a letter opener, but Dad says it’s too blunt on the end. Guesses, anyone?

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My sister Megan and my grandparents both got me several skeins (is it skeins? balls? fluffy squishy things?) of beautiful felting wool. Have you heard of needle felting? You should look it up online or on Etsy. People make absolutely amazing things from felting wool! A sweet lady at church recently gave me a felting kit and I’m having fun experimenting. I’m sure felted things will show up in a later post. 😉

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Two of my friends gave me Hobby Lobby gift cards. YAYAYAY I LOVE HOBBY LOBBY! *Happy sigh* I think I’ll buy a tri-fold poster board so I have a better photo background for things like this. Heh heh. And I can’t wait to see what other fun things I find!

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Awww! My littlest sister Carmen gave me a rock she had found and quite a few coupons for setting the table. ♥ It was so funny, but so sweet! (Don’t you just love little kids’ spelling and handwriting?)

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AHHHHH YAY! My parents got me a pack of 72 Prismacolor colored pencils! I am SO excited because I only had 24 before and I absolutely love Prismacolor brand colored pencils. They color so smoothly and with such rich, brilliant pigment. I’ll definitely show you some of the drawings I’ve made with them in my next art post. 😀

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Okay, I spent WAY too long arranging the pencils in rainbow order and then trying to get a good overhead shot of them all lined up. XD But it was worth it, right? Ahhh, they look so pretty. 🙂

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My grandparents gave me these helpful little colorless blender pencils. They’re for blending the Prismacolor colored pencils, and they work brilliantly!

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My Grandpa and Grandma gave me these gorgeous ferns. ♥ Ohhhh I love plants in general and ferns especially!

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And last but not least, Grammy and Grandaddy gave me a renewal of PicMonkey Royale. (Which I don’t have a picture of – sorry!) I really love the PicMonkey photo editor and Royale gives you access to tons of extra features, so I’m quite happy about that!

Well, I hope you enjoyed this fun little post. 🙂 Do you like Birthday Haul *ahem* Birthday Harvest posts?

As always, thanks for reading, my dears, and have a lovely day!

***Allison***