Bullet Journal Supplies

Tracy from Shutterbean.com shares her favorite Bullet Journal Supplies!

Last September, I started a new bullet journal. I was a little apprehensive starting one in September since most calendars start in January, but I really didn’t want to wait! I wanted to start experimenting with a system that works for my brain. One that will keep me from having calendar burnout….where I buy into a new calendar system after giving up my old one after 4 months. Can anyone else relate?

I’ve been using this journal for the past 7 months (kind of a record for me) and it’s mostly because I decided to treat this journal differently.

This journal is my experimental journal.

Tracy from Shutterbean.com shares her favorite Bullet Journal Supplies!

I’m constantly inspired to see how people make the bullet journal system work for THEM, since it’s really not a one-size-fits-all system.

My intention is to use this journal to figure out what system works for ME.

Did you know that they’re referred to as bujos?  So, from now on I will refer to it as my bujo for the remainder of this post!

There might be some of you who are wondering….

What’s a bullet journal?

You can see more about it here.

If you’re interested in starting your own bullet journal,  here are some of my supply recommendations:

I’ll share some of my favorite experimental spreads with you soon!

Let’s go through my setup!

Tracy from Shutterbean.com shares her favorite Bullet Journal Supplies!

Notebook

If you don’t LOVE your notebook, you’re never going to be motivated to use it. I did A LOT of research on books.  One of the hardest things for me to decide is if I want lines, graph paper, or plain pages in a notebook. This Leuchtturm 1917 dotted notebook has been wonderful.   That’s right! The pages are dotted and they’re numbered too. You can focus on the dots if you need help measuring out a spread or drawing a straight line.  The dots are not offensive to the eyes. Using a dotted journal doesn’t make me wish I had a plain journal or a graph paper journal so I feel like that’s a huge win. That was one of my excuses for abandoning so many past journals.

For this book, I wanted something that would:

  • get my attention
  • be able to spot in a sea of other journals
  • lift my mood
  • inspire me to write in

which is why I deliberately picked the color

ORANGE 

for my bujo.

The funny thing is….. I used to hate orange and now I love it.

Go figure. 

Tracy from Shutterbean.com shares her favorite Bullet Journal Supplies!

There’s a pocket in the back. That’s where I keep my address labels & stamps so I can write letters and mail bills if I’m on the go (and have my bujo with me).   The dimensions are  5.75″ x 8.25″ so it fits in my purse. 

Tracy from Shutterbean.com shares her favorite Bullet Journal Supplies!

Pens are super important to me.

I try to stay away from super inky pens (read: SHARPIE) that have a tendency to bleed through.

Tracy from Shutterbean.com shares her favorite Bullet Journal Supplies!

Pens/Pencils

If you want to see some of my favorite pens, I suggest you read:

Besting Writing Pens (Part 1)

Best Writing Pens (Part 2)

When I’m setting up my spreads, I use a Mechanical Pencil

I also use a:

Tombow brush pen for when I feel like writing fun.

Micron 08 to get the job done.

Papermate Flair is my favorite for list making.

Pentel Brush Pen for drawing my calendar spreads.

For the times when I only have pens and I make a mistake, I use correction tape.

Tracy from Shutterbean.com shares her favorite Bullet Journal Supplies!

I bought myself a little Pen loop for the journal. It helps hold pens/pencils

Tracy from Shutterbean.com shares her favorite Bullet Journal Supplies!

Very handy!

shutterbeanbulletjournalsupplies-3

Tabs

On my first bullet journal, I used washi tape to separate the sections. It worked, but the dividers weren’t as sturdy as I wanted. I bought myself some tab dividers and I LOVE THEM. They’re pretty durable and it’s so much easier to go to the current month because of them.

Tracy from Shutterbean.com shares her favorite Bullet Journal Supplies!

Washi Tape

Washi tape can add a lot of character to a page. It can also double as a page marker.

I put a big strip of washi tape down the center of this page so that I could easily spot it when I’m flipping through. See above!

Tracy from Shutterbean.com shares her favorite Bullet Journal Supplies!

Brush Pens/Highlighters:

How I add color! When I’m working on my bullet journal at home, I use my brush pens. When I’m on the go, I always keep a highlighter in my purse so I can embellish my journal when I need to.

Right now I’m really into Sharpie Retractable Highlighters.

Tracy from Shutterbean.com shares her favorite Bullet Journal Supplies!

Binder Clips

I always have one or two binder clips hanging onto my bujo. It’s a good way to mark a section in your bujo. I also clip receipts/important things to a binder clip in the back so I can find them easily.

Tracy from Shutterbean.com shares her favorite Bullet Journal Supplies!

I play around a lot with graphics.

Whenever I stamp this star stamp on my bujo, it means I worked out!

WAHOO.

Tracy from Shutterbean.com shares her favorite Bullet Journal Supplies!

Index Cards

Here’s something I like to do….make lists that are portable! I like to use colored index cards for this. They end up turning into bookmarks…and I tuck them into the current week so I have a visual cue of something I need to accomplish.

Tracy from Shutterbean.com shares her favorite Bullet Journal Supplies!

 

 

Tracy from Shutterbean.com shares her favorite Bullet Journal Supplies!

MY FAVORITE SUPPLIES:

There you have it!

I hope this inspires you to make/embellish your own bullet journal! 

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  • Rebeca

    You inspire me, Tracy! I’ve been meaning to start my own bullet journal because I never stick to the same journal for more than a couple of months, so I’m willing to give a try to a new system. I loved seeing all your supplies, you make everything look so pretty!

  • Kim

    Help me, Tracy! You’re my only hope! I bought washi tape and want to love it, but I cannot find a pen that doesn’t smear! I even went with your suggestion of the (fine) sharpie pen… no luck. I haven’t tried the Stabilio Write 4-All.. Should I give it a go? Thanks in advance!

    • Christina

      Is your washi tape coated? Most washi is the consistency of masking tape but some brands like MEAD make decoration tape that has a slip to it so you can’t write on it too well.

      • Kim

        Yes! It was coated. I bought Mudder brand… I’ll be sure to look for uncoated tape. Thanks, Christina!

  • Julie

    Hooray! I got into bullet journaling both because of you and my best friend who uses one too. I can’t believe how much more organized and calm and happy I feel since I started in the beginning of February—not just from the organizational aspect of it all, but the coloring and the tape and (for me) stickers I incorporate! Thanks Tracy. Love the index cards as lists idea.

  • Trina

    I started my first bullet journal last January and I love it so far! I got a Leuchtturm notebook as well, but didn’t even think about getting the dotted pages! Perhaps I’ll try that next year. I’ve been using FriXion pens because they’re erasable and they write really well, too. The Tombow brush pen is also one of my favs!

    • Tracy

      Those pens are soooooo neat! I wish they were a little more inky though!

  • Pam

    Love your posts. There is always something interesting, inspirational, and fun to read. Finally started my bullet journal in January using a Volt Planner+Notes. Its pages are undated so I just started with January. The advice to just start worked for me. Now I would love it to be as beautiful and motivating as yours. Thanks for the tools list–I needed that.

    • Tracy

      oh cool! I’m going to see what a volt planner looks like now…..

  • Ciara

    My favorite part about the bullet journal is that you can leave it and pick it back up when you need it. No more feeling guilty about buying pre-dated planners that you don’t use all the time. I’ve had one notebook for 3 years only using it to plan when I really need it-trips, busy school weeks etc. Love seeing how you use yours!

  • libby

    Love this!! I started my first bujo this year and all I really use is my Papermate Flair pen, a heck of a lot of washi tape, and this sweet journal that is not spiral bound *but* it lays flat as if it was a spiral bound book. Also it says “Good Vibes Only” on the front and that helps a lot. 😛
    I started out trying to make every page artistic but I’ve found that despite the fact that arts and doodles and paints play a very strong role in the rest of my life, they have no place in my bujo! This came as a shock to me but I found myself stressing out so much more than I was comfortable with just because of my layouts. So now I’ve just got lists and it is smooth sailing. I love meeting myself in a new way through my bujourney (peh-heh-heh get it?).

    • Tracy

      GOOD VIBES ONLY!
      i tend not to doodle too much in mine… if anything, i experiment in handwriting 😉

  • Victoria Pease

    This is a really good version of a bullet journal – the ones i see on pinterest are so beautiful but I’ve no idea how to get started or maintain it so this post helps put it in a more realistic perspective. I think it would be helpful for jotting down self-employment things (recipients, invoices, payments) and keeping it separate from other things or family calendars. Although I feel joined at the hip with my iphone calendar – its a lifesaver!

    • Tracy

      Yes! Some of the ones I see online seem so involved. So much detail! Some of them are super unapproachable…and I can see why some people think- NO WAY CANNOT DO IT. For me, it’s about writing something down and committing it to memory!

  • Ida

    I started a bullet journal in Jan. So far…I have deviated from using it as a calendar but it’s working for me in other ways.

    I like to have a monthly “habit tracker” to make myself a bit more accountable in good habits. (taking vitamins, being active, when I use facial treatments, cleaning days, etc).

    I read/listen/watch lots of things but I don’t always remember or think back to what I consumed. So I have pages set aside for Books I Have Read, Podcasts I Listen To, Movies I Have Watched. I am numbering them and make little notes of thoughts I had, things that stood out to me, if I enjoyed it/hated it.

    I am in hardcore budget mode right now, trying to pay off some debt and getting back on track with my finances. So I have a weekly/monthly spreads but it’s less about day to day to-do lists and more about tracking my spending.

    Thank you for sharing how you set yours up! I like seeing how everyone makes their journal work for them and I love your bright orange Leuchtturm. I have a plain black one I plan on painting it at some point to brighten it up. Next time though, orange all the way!

    • Tracy

      I haven’t set up a habit tracker in my bujo yet. I think I might work on that for next month’s spread. What format do you like to use?

  • Liz

    Loved seeing your process! I started a bujo this year and it is VERY basic but so far it seems to be working. I wouldn’t mind some flair – like with washi tape. My favorite pen is PaperMate Profile! I used two colors – one to write my lists and one to color in the boxes when I finish a task.
    P.S. I love your list for self-care strategies for the holidays – I need to use those too!

  • Lori

    Those mechanical pencils are my favorite! And, I think I’m goihg to get one of those pen loops!

  • Laura

    Love!!! Your site is such an inspiration to me. I just getting into the world of BuJo-I got. ❤️

  • Rachael @ Rachael's Foodie Life

    I love this! I started my bullet journal at the start of the month and i love it!!! I still have my organiser but i love the freedom of my bullet journal. Thanks for sharing your tips

  • Beth @ bethcakes

    ahh this is such an awesome compilation of bujo stuff! I started using one in January after not being able to find an existing planner that met my needs. I’d always buy them and then quit using them after a couple of months. I mostly use it to plan my blog stuff alongside other weekly stuff, and for tracking things I’m trying to make progress on, like fitness and daily habits. Drinking more water, going to bed earlier, learning guitar, spending less money during the week, haha. I love the Micron 05 and Sharpie pens because they’re not like regular sharpies! They don’t bleed through at all. Plus pentel markers for a splash of color. I try to keep it super minimal, though. I love your tabs and I’ve been meaning to get a pen loop, so thanks for that!

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    […] you Bullet Journal? If so, Tracy Benjamin has some great supplies for you to check out.  I adopted some of the practices nearly a year ago, and it really helps keep […]

  • Jai Want

    found your blog web site on google and check several of your early posts. Continue to keep up the very good operate.

  • Maria

    You have inspired me-before reading your post I didn’t even know what a bujo was!!!! I am gonna take a leap and try it, gonna do a trial/error one first. Loved seeing your supplies which I’m gonna use a shopping guide… Can we see more of your layouts?? If you go to the main website or some social media posts the whole concept seems overwhelming… can’t wait to get started!

    xo

  • Marisa

    I’m a bullet journaler as well and love how adaptable it is to different phases of life! I love your weekly layout and was wondering if you could share how you streamline drawing it out? I find if something takes too long or is too tedious, then I don’t do it regularly. But I would love to add a weekly layout to my current system.

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