*This post is link heavy, for your convenience.
Hello ! I have compiled a fun, useful list for you guys today!
I have been looking for the “popular” notebooks that have been used to bullet journal. There are so many notebooks out there and I am sure that I couldn’t possibly name every single one of them but I have come up with a list of some well suited ones for all you newbie bujo-ers out there that may not know where to start.
I would like to say that you will probably be tempted to go out and buy a big fancy notebook because you see all the other kids with them. But you may want to try out the system first with something that you already have on hand just to see if it is worth your investment. You can use any ole notebook for this! Really, ANY!
Trust me, using the bullet journal system doesn’t require you to have specialty dot grid paper and a fountain pen. These things are lovely and having a good quality notebook is important if you plan to stick with it because you will want to preserve your memories but they are not necessary. So first, try it out to make sure you like it, then invest.
Next I want to go over what makes a good notebook to me.
I do judge a book by its cover
I personally prefer a hard cover, my first was a soft cover Moleskine journal and while I really did enjoy using it there were some problems and complaints that I had. But the biggest was it didn’t feel as protected or, obviously, sturdy as a hard-cover to me. This is just my preference though, I know a lot of people who use soft-cover notebooks and are fine with them. I also love a bound notebook. But a good coil-bound or disk bound is nice too.
*Update: I currently use a Traveler’s Notebook for all my planning needs, but still stand by a good hard cover notebook! I use them for my art journals!
All the guts and stuff are important too.
I want to be able to write with my favorite pens and not see a terrible shadow on the other side ( and definitely not have it bleed through completely :/ ). For bullets I prefer grid style paper but I do use lined paper for other journaling things. I do not like blank paper ( unless for art ) because I cannot, for the life of me, write in a straight line and it bothers my soul. A back pocket in a journal is nice to have for pictures and notes and a page marker is important to me.
I have been a self-admitted paper addict since I was young, I enjoyed buying notebooks more than clothes. Any day. For realsies…But I had never been picky about the quality of paper I had until I started journaling. And even more so with my bullet journal. Though I do kind of think that comes from social media influence a little bit, which is ok, but can get expensive…
So, I will go ahead and assume you are ready to invest in bullet journaling a little bit. Now I want you to think about the qualities you like and don’t like with a notebook.
- Do you like hard or soft-covers?
- Grid, blank or lined paper?
- What type of notebook do you like? Bound? Disk? Coil? Midori style? Reporter style?
Next, and this is pretty important, what type of pen do you use or plan to use? Because there are some pens that require a heavier weight paper, like fountain pens.
Ok, you have tried the system and decided your preferences. Now for the fun part, finding your notebook.
Different Notebook Options.
Yes, you could probably end your search here because the creator of the system has created a notebook for it! Ryder Carrol brings us a journal that not only has that beautiful, heavy-duty, Leuchtturm1917 dot-grid paper(80 g/sqm) and built-in index but also a bullet key, 3(!) page markers, a bullet journal guide and sections! Pretty awesome that it says “Bullet Journal” on the front too. 🙂 You can only find this at the Bullet Journal Shop(the above link).
This comes in many wonderful flavors and is a personal favorite of mine and many other people rolling around Instagram. It is suitable for fountain pens and just about every other pen I have tried except the sharpie (marker not pen). Has two page markers, numbered pages, and index and a pocket in the back. Also comes in dot, graph, lined and blank paper. Has both hard and soft-cover options. There are also pre-made planners that you can use with the bujo too if you love the brand but don’t want to DIY all your layouts. You can find these on their site, but they only sell to certain countries. America is not one so you can follow the above links to Amazon or you can check out Goulet Pens. If you are from one of the select countries you can go to the Leuchtturm1917 website.
There are many options for moleskine journals. Hard, soft and paper-covers, dot, graph, lined, and blank paper, pre-made planners and specialty designs including star wars, peanuts, Alice in wonderland and batman. I do not think the paper quality is suitable for fountain pens but I haven’t had problems with other pens. The grid goes all the way to the edge, which is nice. It has a back pocket and one page marker. The specialty notebooks only have lined pages and I have only been able to find the dot-grid paper in a soft cover. You can find them at Barnes and Noble, Target (generally), The Moleskine website or the link above to Amazon.
Comes in grid (not dot), lined and blank paper and has hard, soft and paper cover options. It has a back pocket and one page marker. I currently have 3 paper cover, lined notebooks that I use for my collections and journaling, I love them! The notebooks are very similar to the moleskine books and come at lower prices and the paper quality in my notebooks is wonderful! I got my notebooks at Barnes and Noble, I haven’t been able to find a good online source for the exact type I have (paper cover) yet, even the website(?) . You can find them at B&N, the Piccadilly website or click the above link to Amazon.
They are mostly flexible covers but I have seen a couple hard covered notebooks and spiral bound notebooks as well. Available in graph, lined or blank and a variety of colors. The most popular option I seen has been the 600 (!) page flexible graph book. Which you can also find at Barnes and noble. I am sure you could fit an entire year of bullet journaling into this notebook…. It is crazy thick…
A quite beautiful breed of black and orange ( and every color in between ) notebooks that come in almost every option. Reporter, spiral, bound, soft, rigid, large, small, dot, graph, lined and blank. I have reviewed both the hard and soft covers of this brand of notebook (here) and they are soooooo nice Video is HERE. Great paper quality and available at Barnes and noble and some art stores, or at their website.
I have recently received and reviewed a graph Clairefontaine notebook. Video HERE The paper is the same paper as the Rhodia notebooks, which is very high quality! If you like your notebooks with high quality grid paper and some simplistic, minimalist headers this notebook would be perfect for you. 🙂 Fountain Pen Friendly ….
I have been lucky enough to get my hands on these wonderful notebooks, ( the 2017 planner ) and they have just released a dot grid notebook as well! The paper is wonderful, and you can see my review in full right here in this YouTube video <3
There are so many options out there for these journals. Covers and notebooks alike. For inserts you can find the original one right here or in the above link then about a million options on Etsy or you can make your own inserts. I recommend Yellow Paper House, because of the fun color options and the great paper quality (24 lb.).
There are some other really amazing ladies that hand craft these midori style notebooks, here are some of them that I have seen and would recommend to you:
| If you make, or know someone who makes these beauties I will be more then happy to review them and add them to this list <3 Just email me <3 |
Disk Bound System
These are nice because you can tear pages out and place them in another location. I really loved this feature in my happy planner. You can buy grid paper( dot and graph ), lined or blank paper for it (or a combination of all) and then, bam, bullet journal. There is Staples Arc, Tul, Happy Planner, or you can just get some etsy covers and put together your own system! Here is some Letter size Dot Grid paper, go crazy….
Jusssst for fun….
I am going to list my favorite PENS for bullet journaling.
I recommend using a pen over a pencil for one, completely zen, reason… It allows you to let go of so much control and become more accepting of your mistakes. Yes, using a pen can do all this for your life 😉 hahaha, seriously though.
My favorite pens include:
The Lamy Safari Fine Nib Fountain pen ( p.s. I know there are others, but this is my first and only one at the moment)
Pilot G-2 0.38 ( Currently using )
Midliner Highlighters ( for color-coding and accents )
I hope this helps you! Enjoy your day!
*Some of the links in this post are affiliate links, this means that I may receive a small commission (no cost to you) if you purchase something through the links provided. I will never add an affiliate link to something I do not know, love or haven’t used myself.