Ever since about middle school, September has meant it’s time to buy a planner and get organized for the school year. While I’m not currently in school, my work life and personal life still have me super busy, so I tend to keep a planner. For the longest time I’ve been a fan of bullet journaling, not the cool stuff you see on Instagram or tumblr, it’s really very messy, but it works for me.
About a year ago I discovered Erin Condren Life Planners, and I thought they were awesome, but REALLY expensive. But this year I’ve gotten even busier and I am in a better place financially so I splurged and ended up getting two. One in horizontal and one in vertical styles to see what works best for me. This, so far, has actually been a really good call for me. The horizontal one I use at work, and for planning/recording all of that. The vertical I use for personal at home. So far it’s been a lot of fun, very functional, and a creative adventure of sorts.
I have been designing my own, and exploring the massive world of sticker paper, but for the most part I have been buying stickers and discovering what works best for me. And just what exactly I like to do for planning. In the future I hope to be designing more, but one of the best ways to learn is by consuming. So I’m consuming a bunch right now!
I’ve started a new instagram just for my planning stuff– I feel like I’m going to be posting so much that it’s just going to clutter up- so why not give it it’s own place? If that is something you would be interested in.
The following is a list of recommendations; favorite shops, shops that I tried but didn’t do well for me, and budget planning:
Favorite Stores so far:
Fox And Cactus: Based out of Brisbane, Australia, this shop does the cutest, stickers. They have functional, full kits, as well as more on the geeky side, which is super useful for me! This was one of the first shops I placed an order with and as soon as I got it, I turned around and placed a second order. High quality, fair prices, not to bad for international shipping, and it was rather quick when you think about how far away Australia is. Highly recommend for other geeky planners out there.
Libbie And Co: An American shop with the best feeling paper ever! I am seriously in love with the paper she uses, it’s fantastic! It’s high quality, matte, but so smooth and creamy, just really awesome. Things are priced fairly for deco/functional stickers. Things were shipped very fast which is always fantastic.
Love Your Planners: I really like this shop for white space weekly kits. They sell single sheets that are prefect for doing white space spreads- most of their one page kits are $3.50 USD, the only thing I wish that was different about them is that there were headers like “Today”, “To Do”, and “Littles” but I can make those myself, so it’s not a big deal by any means.
A Melancholy Moose: If you are as big of a Harry Potter fan as I am then this is a shop your going to love! I ended up buying a ton of sticker kits for the entire month of October from this shop (be sure to check out my Instagram for that in the future). All of the stickers are beautifully hand drawn, as well as being bright beautiful colors.
Soda Pop Studio Shop: This shop sells all it’s prices separately- so lets say you don’t want date covers or washi, no problem! You only want full boxes from one set and washi from another- done! Only pay for what you want. Prices vary depending on what you want- which is great. Two page kits are about $8 USD. Very fast shipping which was fantastic!
Libbie And Co: I got a couple Pom Pom keychains for my planner, and I also got one from Michaels for about the same amount of money ($5) and I actually prefer the one from Libbie- so soft and fluffy. (The pink one on my personal planner is from Libbie And Co)
The Book Nook Patch: That adorable unicorn clip came from this shop. She has lots of variety, so there is something for everyone! Extremely well made, I was very impressed with the quality and craftsmanship. I will totally be buying more from her in the future, or if I need to get a little present for a friend, this shop will probably be a first thought.
One & Done Shops:
Glam Plan Prints: So technically this is a two and done shop. Glam Plan Prints is really well designed, nicely crafted, it’s just so expensive for me. The first order I placed was a pre-order for $25 and I think I’m going to have buyers remorse when it arrives. The second order I did was when the shop was having a sale and I got “glitch” kits. Still expensive, even though they were on sale. There are other shops out there that do full kits for less money with the same clip art. Basically all I’m saying is shop around and stay with in your comfort zone for price points of stickers.
Once More With Love: This shop is all over YouTube, and I was really curious about what all the fuss was about. This shop does hand drawn, “stick figure” or very a basic type of sticker was well as weekly kits. They are based out of Canada- and the shipping was super fast, was super happy with that. And yes they are cute, but the page size and amount of stickers you get seems a bit off to me. When compared next to a sheet from Fox and Cactus there is a noticeable difference, & I would rather buy sheets from Fox and Cactus.This is also because Fox and Cactus does more geeky things that are relevant to my life.
Bubba Bear Studios: I placed my order on August 26 and still haven’t gotten my order (as of September 22). In the store policies section there wasn’t much about processing time- but it’s been nearly a month and to me that’s ridiculous. If you do choose to order from this shop, don’t expect to get your order quickly.
Planning on a budget:
For Etsy shops: $2 Tuesdays are fantastic, shops often have sales- they post things to their Insta, & FB groups the most it seems- and often offer coupons through YouTube videos. So just look around and there should be some good stuff you can get a deal on.
An additional option to Etsy shops are digital downloads. These are a great planning on a budget option because you can reprint them as much as you like.
DIY stickers: We live in a wonderful time when you can have photoshop on your tablet/phone- this is a total advantage because you can easily make simple stickers that are SUPER cost effective. (You can use any program you like, photoshop is just a good example of how far tech has come 🙂 )
Investing in Clip Art: Clip art for personal use is fantastic, it’s cheap, and reusable. You might even be able to find it for free.
Pinterest: Pinterest is a fantastic resource, from finding inspiration, to finding freebies. The possibilities are almost limitless. Check out my Pinterest board for planning to get started!
Michael’s (or other craft stores): Craft stores are great- they have stickers, pretty labels, washi tape, and so many other things you can use to incorporate into your planning. They also run really good sales (like everything in the store 50% off- those are my fav!).
What are some of your favorites? Any tips to share? I would love to know them, so leave me a comment down below!