Photography: Debby Hudson/Unsplash

Every start of the year, what I look forward to the most is getting myself a new planner and listing down my goals, plans and all the important dates including public holidays. This year, it’s extra special as we’ve left the mess of 2021 behind with our hopes and dreams reignited and renewed for 2022!

Photography: Prophsee Journals/Unsplash

That said, one of my goals this year is to commit to bullet-journaling as I’ve picked it back up during the first MCO in 2020. I’ve been wanting to stick to it since it became a trend but always felt overwhelmed with the proper techniques and tools needed. So, with some time spent researching and experimenting in the last few months, I came up with a list of essential tools a BuJo beginner would need and hopefully make it easier for you to start your own journey. Happy journaling!

1. A trusty notebook

Photography: Jess Bailey/Unsplash

It goes without saying that you’ll need a notebook for this. However, finding the perfect notebook isn’t an easy task and you’ll want to check its features and choose one that you’re completely comfortable with. Some of the specs to consider before getting one are the types of paper, whether plain, lined, gridded or dotted (I recommend the latter as it offers the most flexibility!), the intensity of those lines and dots, paper quality and thickness, and how your notebook lays while you’re using it. If you need help to pick out one, we're loving the options from Ana Tomy, Mossery and Typo.

2. Drawing and writing pens

Photography: Estée Janssens/Unsplash

Aside from using your journal to track your plans, it also acts as an artistic outlet where you can let your thoughts roam free – whether it’s through words or doodles. To start, I’d recommend investing in good fineliner pens with different tip sizes; if you’re not the drawing type, just a couple of sizes will do, and writing pens that typically don’t bleed, smudge or ghost on the back of the paper. Personally, I like using my Pilot ‘Frixion Ball' pen as it’s erasable and has been a lifesaver so many times! So go ahead and experiment, and then choose one that you’re completely comfortable with.

3. Coloured mediums

Photography: Estée Janssens/Unsplash

Although not totally necessary for some, having a range of coloured pens, markers and highlighters will definitely come in handy when you’re taking notes, creating your monthly spreads or even doodling. Plus, the extra colours will surely make your journal aesthetically pleasing when you’re flipping through it!

4. A ruler

Photography: 2H Media

This list of essentials wouldn’t be complete if rulers weren’t mentioned (unless you're someone who never fails to draw a straight line every single time!). Any ruler works just fine but a short, portable one is even better as you can slip it into your journal pocket (if it has one) or BuJo supply storage.

5. Decorative extras

Photography: Estée Janssens/Unsplash

Last on my list of must-haves are the tools you’ll need to decorate your journal, if you like that extra touch or something OTT. I frequently use stickers, washi tapes and craft paper in mine since they’re the most accessible to me. However, you can also explore things like novelty sticky notes and stamps to decorate your pages as well as stencils which will help you create sections like your habit or mood tracker neatly and efficiently. Whatever you choose to do, just go all out and have fun!

Featured image: Content Pixie/Unsplash

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