Just over a month ago now I managed to trip into the world of bullet journals.
I’ve tried various different planners before, spent money on printable spreads, etc, and just couldn’t seem to make it stick.
Then I realised I could just make my own, all I needed was a notebook.
And so my Frankenstein of a ‘bullet journal’ was born.
My only problem then was making it ‘pretty’ enough that I’d want to use it. All I had was my cheap black Paper Mate Biro, which was technically adequate, but not exactly making me want to fill out my new journal. I was also facing the problem that I was starting this new endeavour before payday, so I was somewhat skint (especially after going on a sticker buying spree on Etsy…shush, don’t judge me, I like to use stickers in my planners).
A bit of research online gave me a headache. I didn’t want brush pens. I didn’t want to attempt to find American products on a British site.
So all in all, I got frustrated with the damn thing before I’d even started. But then I had the clever idea of going to my local Poundland, and its neighbour, B&M.
I walked out of those stores with a lighter purse and a smile on my face.
Well, let me show you.
Firstly, I found some pens. These came from B&M, and for £1.99 I really can’t complain. Their colours are vibrant, and they glide over the page really smoothly.
Once I had my pens, I needed something to decorate with. Considering I’m not particularly good at drawing, or calligraphy, or any of that fancy stuff other journals seem to be filled with, that pretty much left me with decorative tapes. And wonderful, brilliant B&M did not let me down on that.
Just look at these tubes filled with different tapes! I’ve plain, patterned, and glittery! And the best part is they were only £1.99 each!
Though I didn’t buy them as I didn’t really like half of the designs, B&M also do packs of ‘funky’ tapes that might be of use to someone.
Even Poundland gave me some wonderful things to use.
Do you have a Birthdays spread? Or want to add a bit extra to birthday daily pages? I love this tape, and for a quid you can’t go wrong with it really.
Generally this stuff is for card making, but it looks really pretty in journals. I already had a black, and purple version of this at home, though I had no idea what to do with it till I started playing with my journal. Now I love it.
There’s also a gold version available.
Who doesn’t love Winnie the Pooh?…..ok so maybe my love of Pooh was tainted a little after watching Goodbye Christopher Robin (brilliant film, btw, highly recommend, and not just because it had one of my favourite actors in it). But that doesn’t negate the fact I still love Pooh and all his companions! Hence why I bought this to use in my journal.
This is from Poundland too, so it’s not going to break the bank by buying it.
They also have Winnie the Pooh letter stickers, I didn’t end up getting them, but others might enjoy them.
I also bought these photo corners. Whether they’ll work or not, I don’t know, but I thought they might be nice to try.
It took me under an hour to find all this, after I’d spent days trying to find something I liked, and was willing to pay out for, online.
If you’re just starting out with journalling, or have been doing it for a while, and want something to brighten up your pages, honestly? just take a trip to your local cheapy shops. They’re pretty much guaranteed to have something, and it’s usually better quality than you’d expect.
I’ve spent less than 20 quid (not including my notebook or growing collection of stickers, of course), and I love what I can do with it all.
I love experimenting with it, and it’s that that draws me back every morning. Ok, yes, the whole journalling aspect of it all is slowly helping me be more productive, which is also a reason why I come back to it. But I find planning out my daily spread with different tapes, and bright pens helps keep me focused. It’s a calming way to start the day with my pens, and my tapes, and a mug of tea beside me.
And the best part is, it didn’t cost a fortune, so I don’t mind if I mess up.
Do you have some favourite cheapy shop buys you use in your journals? I’d love to hear about them if you do.