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Must Have Planner Supplies

Updated on April 23, 2017

When I was about 11 or 12 years old, my school provided all the students with agenda books. They didn't want any excuse for students not having homework or projects completed on time. I loved it, but after middle school, I wasn't able to successfully keep up with a planner.

In 2015, I started planning again. I've tried pretty planning and functional planning. I've used an Erin Condren planner, a basic el cheapo planner, a Moleskine planner and a bullet journal. To each is their own, and each person has their own planning style.

The key to planning is figuring out your planning style. If you try to force yourself into pretty planning but you're really a functional planner, then you'll experience planner failure. It happens. You may have a lot of planner fails until you figure out what your style is.

You can start by planning your to-do's in a composition notebook or a basic agenda book with a few stickers and stamps, or you can dive into a pretty planner with every type of planner supply you can find.

Either way, with the right supplies, your planner can be an heirloom that you pass down to your children. Some planner people use their planners as references, note taking and scheduling. These books are just that... Completely books of memories...

1. A Planner

The most obvious and first thing that you'll need is a planner book. This may sound simple, but there are many different types and brands of planners.

Popular planners include:

  1. Pretty planners (Erin Condren, Happy Planner and Carpe Diem Planner)
  2. Travelers notebooks
  3. Bullet journal (either the Bullet Journal brand book, a Leuchtturm 1917 or any basic notebook)
  4. Passion planner
  5. Ring planner (Filofax)

When you figure out what type of planner you are, choosing the planner book is a little easier. Sometimes it takes a little testing to figure out what works for you.

2. Pens and Markers

The pen you use in your planner can make all the difference. Depending on the paper used in the planner, some pens will bleed or shadow through the paper. Some pens will take longer to dry on certain paper.

Ball point pens will typically work on all paper, but gel pens and fountain pens aren't always as universal. You may have to do a pen test with your favorite pen(s) to see if they'll work with your planner.

Popular pens and markers the planner community love include:

  • Uniball Signo
  • Staedtler
  • Pilot Frixion
  • BIC Gelocity
  • Paper Mate Flair Pens
  • Paper Mate InkJoy


  • Zebra Mildliners
  • Zig Fine & Chisel

3. Washi

Washi tape comes in a wide variety of patterns and widths. You can get simple washi that's one color or a basic dot pattern. Or, you can use washi with cats, grass, flowers, galaxy patterns and much more.

Many people in the planner community use washi in their pretty planners to design and make them prettier. Others who may use more basic planners, may use washi to create zones to separate days or to add a little color to their planners.

You can use washi to categorize sections in bullet journals. You don't have to be a pretty planner to enjoy the use of washi tape in your planner.

4. Stickers

Whether you use a pretty planner or a functional one, stickers can really help you keep organized.

There are plenty of sellers on Etsy that design stickers. You can find stickers for chores, bills, common to-do's, work, children and pets. Many Etsy sellers will even design stickers for you so that you get exactly what you need.

Some sellers design stickers that fit in the boxes of Erin Condren or Happy Planners. You can find vertical and horizontal stickers.

You can purchase themed stickers at local craft stores that may give your planner a little umph that you need to keep planning. Popular themes may range from holidays, events and popular cartoons. Michael's sells $1 sticker books that are quite commonly purchased by planners people to decorate with.

5. Stamps

Clear cling stamps are easy to use and store. Just like stickers, you will find many themed stamps, but there are some sellers like Sweet Stamp Shop and Studio L2E Studio that have functional stamps.

The benefit of stamps is that you only need to buy them once. You can reuse them over and over again and you can stamp many colors. Stickers only come to you the color(s) the seller designs, whereas you can use many different colors of ink with stamps.

Like your pens and markers, you'll want to test different inks for bleeding and shadowing on your planner pages.


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