Loads of individual lists, an agenda, a creative outlet: A Bullet Journal (BuJo) is something that you create yourself. Flow’s intern Suzanne starts 2020 with a whole load of empty pages and looks at how she can fill them.
On the Internet I always saw beautiful creations with colors and themes, and always wondered where everyone got their creativity from. ‘I am not artistic enough to make a Bullet Journal in a creative way’: Like so many others, I believed this misconception. It even prevented me from starting.
Fortunately, I now know that I don’t have to be able to draw that well, and that everyone can do it. What’s more, the book is mine, so I can make it as fun or crazy as I want. I have experimented a lot with different styles—sleek with black and white or with a lot of color. Now I mainly work with kraft paper, I use pastel colors and I make the spread a bit messy with doodles, washi tape and pictures.
It’s also okay to cheat with other Bullet Journalers. When I’m looking for inspiration, I always look at Pinterest. If you search for ‘bullet journal’, hundreds of creations come up—in all shapes and sizes. I use these spreads as a basis and give them my own twist by changing the theme. In this way I don’t exactly copy the page but manage to make it my own style.
I follow some journalers on Instagram. I love getting inspiration from @boho.berry. We don’t have the same style, but she makes lovely spreads that I use as a basis. I also follow @bujobeauties, an account that shares BuJo’s by others and is a timeline full of different styles and inspiration.
My top recommendation is that you just start. Make mistakes, erase them, start again, search the Internet for inspiration and discover your own style. Because at the end of the day, you too are creative and can make a Bullet Journal.
Books I want to read
As a fanatic reader, I enjoy looking back on all the books I have read at the end of the year. But I don’t keep them in my own bookcase at home; I’ve created one in my BuJo. And as my drawn bookcase starts to fill up over the year, I make it more homely by adding plants to it. If you want to do the same, here’s a tip: draw the books a little larger, because I’ve found that I have to write in the titles really small now.
Places I want to go
My life has been full of beautiful journeys and I like to keep track of where I have been. I could scratch the countries I’ve visited off on one of those scratchable world maps, but if it’s in my BuJo I always have my map with me. Here’s how you can do it : print an image of a map, place it over a blank page in your BuJo and trace over the borders with a pencil. If you press hard enough, the lines will appear on your BuJo’s paper. Then, simply draw over the lines with a fine-liner and you have a map in your Bullet Journal.
This year’s goals
I always set goals at the beginning of the year. Because I like to go wild in my BuJo, I get very creative when making this list. I have added stickers to a few of the goals so as to bring the page to life. And I can always look back on this page to remind myself of my goals.
Text Suzanne Kuijvenhoven, Translation Julia Gorodecky,Photography Floor van Koert