We have been seeing photos of Instagrammers, bloggers, and other influencers hyper-organized, beautifully composed bullet journals. But what are they, how do you start them, and why?! Designer Ryder Carroll created the bullet journal, and defines it as “an analog system to help you track the past, organize the present, and plan for the future”. They have gained popularity due to the customization and freedom to organize your journal however you want, and the options are really endless!
Step 1: Start with a great journal, such as this one, which is most popular among bullet journalists due to its numbered pages and 3 separate ribbon page markers. It comes in over 20 colors! When choosing a journal, be sure to get one with dotted pages rather than blank or lined. This type of journal is the most customizable, and you can still make your own lines by connecting the dots if you want to.
Step 2: Create an index and a few logs to get started. Most journalists write a future log of important dates to remember throughout the year, as well as monthly and daily logs.
Step 3: Make a key or legend for yourself, to shorthand words and streamline your calendar. Most journalists write out the period of time that they plan to use a book for, usually 3, 6 or 12 months per book. This creates a goal and gives you a calendar to stick to.
Step 4: Daily logs. This is where we write what we need or want to achieve in a day, and also write down anything significant that happened that day.
Step 5: Lists! This is totally optional and can include whatever makes sense for YOUR life. This can be grocery/meal prep lists, books to read, things you love, restaurants to try, etc.
Step 6: If you love drawing, color, or calligraphy, feel free to use this to embellish your journal! This is not necessary, but the aesthetic of a beautifully created journal is just as appealing as the actual organization to some bullet journalists.
Step 7: Enjoy your journal! It’s amazing to mindfully organize your life and create your own personalized method of doing so. It’s also great to be able to look back at an old journal and remember all of the memories that you wrote down!
Why we should all try it:
Writing by hand does take more time than using a digital calendar on your phone or laptop, but using a handwritten analog system is much more engaging to our brains. Rather than saying “Hey Siri…schedule _____ and make a note of _____”, bullet journaling forces us to decide what is worth taking the time to write down in our pretty little notebooks. This helps us to narrow down the most important things in life!
In the name of print, pattern, & journaling,
Design Works International is a lifestyle studio located in the heart of Manhattan that’s been helping to define and capitalize on trends for over 30 years. Originally (and still) a print studio, the in-house artists at Design Works International are busy every day exploring, inspiring, and creating to bring you original prints that are on-trend and sure to sell!