Why this artists’ BUJO doesn’t look like a masterpiece…

Why this artists’ BUJO doesn’t look like a masterpiece…

…and why it’s great that yours doesn’t either!

The Black Hole that is Bullet Journaling

It’s no secret that Bullet Journaling has exploded into popularity lately! And it seems like every time I log onto Pinterest I’m flooded with images of these beautiful, talented, artistic and intense Bujo layouts. It’s incredibly overwhelming and I’m an artist! It’s not that these layouts are creatively out of reach but these wonderful, motivated artists seem to find so much time and energy to pour into these spreads that I just can’t find in my own life. I mean, have you seen¬†Grandezza¬†Aburido’s journal? It’s a piece of art in itself! There are pages of that journal that I would frame and hang in my house. But there is something we forget when pinning hundreds of images of flawless layouts… bullet journaling is about what works for YOU. And no one else. It is also about productivity. As much as I may want to sit and doodle all day and night and have big dreams of eventually creating a fully illustrated journal, that dream doesn’t really help me organize my life. Also, admittedly, after teaching art all day with teenagers, I need a break from it when I get home. That’s why I don’t doodle or decorate my journal spreads.

Don’t be afraid to break away from the norm!

When I started with my first Bullet Journal, I did what I imagine most people do. I googled and pinned every possible how-to guide, and tip article I could find. And they all say basically the same thing. I tried to fit in those molds, I tried to create and update the yearly goals page, monthly spreads, weekly spreads, even tried daily spreads! (what was I thinking??!!) I made collections about EVERYTHING. And after I finished most of them, I never looked at them again. So a year later, I sat down with my new journal to think about what I actually use and want in my new book.

Bullet Journal Minimalistic Yearly Spread

Bullet Journal Minimalistic Yearly Spread

Bullet Journal Minimalistic Monthly Spread

Minimize your spreads!

A Yearly Calendar: to keep track of far away events

Monthly Calendars: I draw them as large as possible so I have room to include a lot of information because I CUT weekly and daily logs THANK GOD!

Bullet Journal Minimalistic Collection House Projects

When it comes to my collections I also scaled way down.

Bills and Savings: a graph showing how much of my money goes to expenses every month and how I’m doing in my savings account. (Never good enough)

Ongoing House Projects: When you own a 100 year old house this list just never seems to get any shorter.

Weight Loss Tracker and My Favorite Weight Watcher Recipes: Gotta stay on top of my health!

And finally, My Blog notes: My accounts, ideas for future posts, tips I see online, etc…


So obviously my journal doesn’t have a lot of pages yet, but that’s the point. Plenty of room to grow for this compulsive list maker!

Minimize your tools!

I used to carry around a handful of colored markers, colored pens, wash tapes, etc etc etc… I was ridiculous.

I’ve scaled down to:

2 colored markers to highlight. I chose Tombow’s brush tips in blue and green.

1 Uniball thin black pen

1 Faber Castell Fine Black Pen

Wite Out Tape

I also keep some stencils in the back pages of my journal. When I need to add something extra to a page, I pull those out.


Here are some beautiful Minimalistic Bujo-ers that have inspired me!

The Pacific Line

The Bujo


Tips for making a minimalistic spread work

What do you think?

Life. Food. Travel. Art.
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