Having a bullet journal has been one of the greatest things I have ever done for my own productivity! I know it’s 2019 and I should be all about the apps and online calendars, but I’m still old school at heart. I love taking the time to write in my physical journal and fill in my paper calendar. Plus, my bujo (bullet journal for short) has allowed me the weekly opportunity to be creative. Today, I’m sharing ways you can get creative with your own bullet journal with weekly layouts.
Doesn’t it take up extra time to draw out creative bujo pages? Yes, it certainly does. However, I found that it’s never a “waste of time” to be creative. These pages get my brain thinking outside the box, which has proven to boost my productivity, rather than be a distraction from it.
It’s easy to explore your creativity with bullet journals. Here’s what I would try out:
- Play with different layouts: I’ve given you some of my favorite below, feel free to copy
- Try different modalities: markers, pens, colored pencils, paint, etc.
- Change up the colors: Fall in love with a layout? Keep it fresh by playing with a different color scheme each week.
- Practice drawing: Attempt to add a little flare to your pages with flowers, cacti, cats, you name it.
- Stickers: While I don’t use them as much now that I’m traveling, stickers can be a really fun way to add pizzazz to any page.
At the end of the day, the point of a bullet journal it to make it your own. I love being able to adjust to my needs each week. If I know ahead of time that I have a million events on Monday and plan on doing nothing on Sunday, I can make a layout that creates more space on Monday and less on Sunday. It gets to evolve into whatever your needs are.
Keep it fun. Keep it YOU!
Master a Layout then Change It Up
I have one go-to layout that I use ALL the time. It makes it really easy for me to throw together my weekly layout quickly when I don’t really have the time to think about it. This is anything but boring though! Having a solid structure in mind gives me the freedom to play around with the colors, the quote styles, and the way I layout my lists and habit trackers.
This is standard for me. A simple layout with boxed headers, which makes it so easy for me to play with color options. This is with some basic markers and a black felt tip pen.
You’ll notice I REALLY enjoy rainbow pages. Why not go wild with the color options?! Also, notice that I had to cross out the dates on this one? Mistakes happen. Keeping a creative bullet journal has actually helped me let go of perfectionism. It’s flawed, but still fun and beautiful!
Notice the weather box on the bottom left? I was in a city this week that was known for rain, so I wanted to make sure I was as prepared as possible. It’s not something I usually do, but again, that’s what I love so much about bullet journals. I also added a fun sticker to this layout 🙂
Watercolor explosion! I love the fiery colors of this theme. Notice it’s very similar to the one just above it? It goes back to that added benefit of having a consistent style that you mix up however you please. I changed up the habit tracker items too, as I’m always prioritizing different things.
Same Layout, Different Colors
When I find a weekly style I love, I enjoy the s*** out of it. The same style can look so different by simply changing up the colors. It’s a fun way to explore creativity but have a basic outline ready to go. Plus, you get to explore tons of different color schemes.
This layout is so simple, but looks really clean. It gives you a lot of opportunity to change up the colors or keep it plan with one solid color on the entire page. I really enjoy the habit tracker going down the sides of the page, too. It makes this one a bit more unique.
Soft or Bold?
The same layout can seem sweet and soft OR loud and bold. The colors can make such a huge difference in the overall feel of the pages. I also liked changing up the layout of the habit tracker on this one.
I’m newer to watercolor designs, so once I get one figured out, I go wild with it. This is the same flower design, which I love. There’s just a simple shifting of colors. On the last one, I also changed around the size of Saturday and Sunday, as I knew I had no plans those days.
Colored Pencils are Easy!
Colored pencils are probably the lightest modality I use for creating layouts, but it doesn’t mean they can’t be bold! You can use the whole rainbow or just a few colors. They’re probably the best option if you don’t want your pages to crinkle or bleed through.
I decided to have a lot of fun shading in the entire background of this page. The layout itself is super simple, but it stands out with the colored background. You can do the same with just one or two colors. It’s quicker and easier than you’d think!
I still have a lot to learn with how to draw hanging plants…. and gemstones… but it’s so much fun to try new things. I’m really into the bold outlines with my black felt tip and a lighter colored pencil shadow.
Get Bold with Markers
I LOVE bold pages. They call me in somehow, saying, “okay girl, it’s time to tackle the day.” When I’m looking to create a bold look, I use markers. The other good thing about markers is that you can do a simple layout without the harshness of the black lines. The markers are powerful enough to create the layout.
This is one of the easiest layouts I do, yet it looks so clean. The bold lines of the marker makes for the perfect heading for each day. I don’t even feel the need to box in my days.
Try Out Banners
Drawing little banners as your headers can make a simple layout stand out. They’re actually way easier than you’d think, especially with a dot grid or regular grid journal. Get creative with your numbers, too. Why not?
I really enjoy squares. It’s also fun to break up the outlines of the box with the text. Just leave a gap for the words when you’re creating a square and fill in the space with bold letters, cursive, or whatever styles speaks to you.
I like to avoid too much dead space or white space on my pages. Leaving some room along the edges of the page can give you the space to get creative with different border options. Explore Pinterest for fun ideas or just allow your own creative juices to flow.
Notice a big difference on this one – I put Monday & Tuesday together. I knew I would be on flights for 30+ hours, so I created the page to best fit my needs. Why waste extra squares that are going to be empty? I was also needing extra inspiration this week, thus two spaces for quotes.
Ever since my mom bought me a mini watercolor set for Christmas a couple years back, it’s been my favorite travel companion. I bust that thing out on the beach, on airplanes, and restaurants all over the world. It’s a fun way to enjoy my coloring books, but it’s also found it’s way into my bullet journal.
Pre-warning here: It will crinkle your pages, unless you have a watercolor friendly notebook. I don’t really mind it.
Light and Soft
Similar to the colored pencils, you can use the watercolors to create really soft backgrounds. The colors here are just enough to add some separation to each day, but it has a gentle look to it. Of course, the lighter you go, the more water is being used, so don’t stress about the wrinkled pages.
Go a Little Darker
I enjoy going darker around the borders and then filling in my squares with a watered down version of the colors. This can make for bold lines that still feel organic and natural.
As an Arizona girl, I’m a big fan of cacti. While I wouldn’t call myself an expert at drawing or coloring cactus, I’m having a ton of fun sneaking them in here and there 🙂
This one just snuck it’s way in when I found an empty space. Find something you enjoy drawing that you can sneak in here or there for an added smile to your week.
This layout is nice and LOUD, so I added the cacti to give it a little feminine love. I tried playing around with mini succulents in the top right, but I’ve got some learning to do. Can you draw cute succulents? If so, teach me your ways!
What I love about this one is the “blob” watercolors. I just did some random watercolor shapes and a bold felt-tip black marker on top for the actual cactus shape. It’s a fun way to play around with shapes.
Who says we need to make a box?
Time consuming? Yes. Worth it? 100%! I love this beehive/honeycomb look. The colors are cheerful and it is definitely thinking “outside the box.” With a look like this, it’s nice to have a ruler or some sort of line guide to connect the dots for you.
Okay, I know these are practically squares… but the rounded corners make it just a little bit different. Also, look closely. My corners are far from perfect, but it still makes for a fun look!
Diamond are a Girls Bestfriend
Diamonds are fun, right? This is probably one of the most challenging layouts I do, so I make the most of it. I’ll do the same layout the following week but tracing the diamond shapes on the back of the same page. If you want to do the same, make sure to put the diamond layout on the right page (then it will be on the left page the following week). So fun!
I sure hope so!
There’s also a slight chance you’re feeling a bit intimidated. Don’t fret! It’s all about playing and having fun. Just allow yourself to get lost in the creativity and try new things.
It’s not about being perfect. It’s about creating a bullet journal that screams YOU. It will be flawed and messy, but oh so much fun! Try different modalities, change up the shapes, and get lost in whatever sparks inspiration in your world.
What’s your favorite bullet journal layout? Let me know in the comments below!
Stay creative and true to yourself!