If you follow my Instagram, you probably see my bullet journal spreads pop up at the beginning of each month. I also wrote a blog post about my November 2018 spreads that you can check out here.
There are so many posts out there that talk about the “right” way to bullet journal, all sorts of different types of spreads, in general a million ways to bullet journal, and it can be incredibly overwhelming – especially when you’re just starting out!
To me, bullet journaling is an extremely personal thing, and the way you do it depends specifically on your tastes and what you want to get out of your journal. When you’re just starting out, it can be incredibly difficult to know what style will work best with you, so I’ve picked four categories below that encompass a lot of what you’ll find when looking for inspiration.
Whatever sounds like it fits what you want from your bullet journal is the style you should give a try first! Each category will have an example as well, so you can see exactly what it looks like and if it’s what you want or not. If you’re interested in a specific type, be sure to check out the linked Instagram page for more, since each person has a ton of awesome pictures!
The Minimalist: This style of bullet journaling is exactly as it sounds. Typically, it’s done with just a black pen or pencil, has very simple writing, and is absolutely function over beauty. Typically minimal spreads would include a plain header and a simple key for tasks and events such as dots, circles, and arrows.
This is an awesome style for people who are just starting and feel overwhelmed because it’s so straightforward. You can do simple, easy spreads and begin to add to it as you learn more about what you want to get from your bullet journal.
Starting out with this style is super simple: all you need is a pen or pencil you like writing with, and any sort of journal! If you want to spice up your spreads, you can definitely add in some color without needing to make it any more complicated!
The Memory Keeper: If you want your bullet journal to double as a standard journal, this is the style for you! Typically, the memory keeper journal is going to include spaces to journal about your day, as well as lots of different pieces from daily life such as receipts, tickets, etc. Think of this style as a scrapbook!
This is a great style for someone who wants an easy way to keep track of what happens in the day to day. In the example below, it’s a January Favorites post, which is awesome and easy spread that can make reflecting fun and personal, and fit with your journal!
Starting out with this style is a little more tricky than the minimalist. If all you want to do is journal your day, you can pretty easily do it with a pen and your journal. If you want to turn your bullet journal into a junk journal as well, you’ll need tape or glue, scissors, and any other crafting supplies. If you have disposable income and take a lot of pictures, you could also buy a small printer meant for photos!
The Decorator: If you’ve seen my bullet journal, you’ve know exactly what this style is all about! When you see lots of colorful titles and words, stickers, and washi tapes, that’s exactly what this style encompasses.
The decorator is best for people who love a very busy and colorful spread. You can definitely use neutral colors as well, but the basic idea is that it’s packed full of all sorts of things!
This is a little more expensive than other styles because if you’re like me, you want a bunch of options, even though you don’t need them! You’ll want different colored pens or markers, washi tapes, and all sorts of stickers.
The Artist: This is definitely the style that a lot of people think of when it comes to bullet journaling, and is in my opinion the most intimidating! The artist style typically has very simple spreads, that include elaborate pieces of art along with them. The style also encompasses beautiful cover pages, and weekly pages that have gorgeous doodles for each day.
If you love doodling and making all sorts of creative and fun designs, this style is for you! This style is the most flexible in terms of structure; usually the focus of each spread is the art versus the writing. Take a look at the example to see what I mean!
If you enjoy doing art, you probably have a medium of choice already. If you’re experimenting, anything from colored pencils to watercolor to markers are an option! If you’re interested in using watercolor, you’ll probably want to invest in a better journal that can handle the water without buckling the paper or causing worse problems.
Of course, if you feel like a combination of two or more of these ideas is for you, go for it! There’s never an exact science to bullet journaling; it’s all about what works best for you and makes you feel like you’re getting the most out of your journal.
Since bullet journaling is so flexible, you can also start with the basic journaling and then make it more your own as you learn what you want from it and how you want it to look – what’s most important is that it’s fun for you and functional at the same time!
Which style fits you best?