Week after week I get questions about all of the different planning styles: “I’m really confused. What is the point of all the stickers? They seem like a waste to me. I can’t be the only one who is baffled by this.” or “I could TOTALLY get into the stickers. I just didn’t know about all of this stuff, I can see these planners being addicting!”
The best part about planning is that there is a planning style for literally every type of planner. There are probably styles I haven’t even heard of! So let’s jump in and chat about all of the styles I do know, use and love!
I’m starting out with my absolute favorite planning style… stickers! There is absolutely nothing wrong with a piece of paper and a pen but with stickers you’re adding an extra element. For me that takes my ordinary planner and turns it into a scrapbook. I can look back and see when we had date night or when the last dinner with my grandfather was. I even like to add little journal sections to really special days.
Of course, memory planning is a step above even planning with stickers (I’ll show an example down below) but even a planner with stickers turns into a memory planner over time. I may not have time to sit down and scrapbook each and every week but I do have 30-50 minutes to get out my planner and plan out a sticker spread. A little creative therapy if you will.
There are a million different types of planners that support stickers so if you decide to get into sticker planning make sure you’re buying the right type of stickers… for example Happy Planner Stickers for your Happy Planner. I mean don’t get me wrong a sticker is a sticker… it will stick to anything and I’ve used an Erin Condrin sticker in a Happy Planner but the stickers do fit better when you match them with their intended planner.
Even within the sticker world there are different planning styles… and honestly they can all be combined! I know… it’s complicated! Just remember there’s no wrong way to plan… even if your planning style doesn’t appear on this post that’s ok. Do what works for you.
I absolutely love using Sticker Kits from Etsy… they make it super easy to put together a cohesive spread. There are a million different sticker kits with different colors, patterns, themes… the possibilities are endless! I used a kit called Boho Babe for the spread below… it’s a mixture of checklists, decorative boxes and adorable little rose gold icons.
Anything with rose gold on it is definitely my planning style.
No White Space Planning
No white space planning is exactly what it sounds like… planning with no white space! Typically you will fill the spaces of your planner completely with stickers… larger ombre checklists make this easier than the list style checklist above.
I rarely use this style… it’s not really my thing but occasionally I have a really busy week that ends up being no white space. Although a true no white space wouldn’t even have space between the boxes. I can’t even handle that… even a full page of stickers like this enchanted winter spread makes me a little skitso.
Another fun tip is to color block with your stickers… when doing no white space some planners like to make one row be all pink and the next all blue and the next all gray… then repeat! I mix and match but color blocking is just one more style. Overwhelmed yet?
Remember in Pirates of the Caribbean when they tell Elizabeth Swan the code is really more like guidelines then actual law? That’s all planning styles really are… guidelines!
White Space Planning
Alright now we’re going completely in the opposite direction… instead of completely covering the page with stickers we’re leaving blank space. Writing directly on the planner instead of on stickers.
My favorite part of no white space planning is the creativity… when you step outside the box of use this sticker in this way there seems to be more freedom. Using icons to depict activities, writing lists. It’s crazy y’all, crazy!
While you can use sticker kits for white space planning (they’ll go a lot further!) I tend to pull out my Mambi Sticker books and scrapbook stickers for these. That may be personal preference but you can make a really beautiful spread with one sticker book… and that sticker book will last you for so many weeks.
I want to start memory planning sooo bad! Although you can use any planner to collect memories or as a scrapbook there is an entire section of planning that involves pictures! Typically memory planning is done after the fact, instead of planning what is coming up or what you have to do memory planning is done after the week is over.
Typically you would sit down at the end of the week and place photos or fun stickers about what you did that week. They even make small photo printers like the sprocket that connect with your phone to print small 2×3 sticky photos.
Basically memory planning is like scrapbooking except instead of recording the big events you document the everyday. Life 365 days a year. I still haven’t jumped into memory planning so I borrowed a photo from The Shiny Nest… you should check out her hand lettering!
This is exactly what it sounds like… purely functional planning. To some people the stickers and the extras are just noise that distract them from planning out their week. Old fashioned pen to paper still works just fine.
This little planner looks an awful lot like mine all the way through college… even when I did functional planning I had to color code my classes and activities! This particular planner belongs to Michelle over at Shells Pages and I love all of her pretty writing!
Y’all might recognize this little planner from my setup earlier this year… this is my on-the-go planner. I keep a running to-do list for days that my little ombre checklist just can’t contain everything I have to do. For me this planner works with my sticker planner. For others this is all they need.
A travelers notebook is perfect for a list system, you can have to-do lists, grocery lists, tv show lists, chore lists… the opportunities are endless. Some people just work better off a list! If you’re wanting to get into travelers notebooks without spending a fortune (they can be made of leather and gorgeous!!) try May Designs at Target… this little guy was only $20.
Oh boy, this feels like it could be an entire new post… a bullet journal can take so many forms. It can be a notebook in a travelers notebook or a notebook on it’s own. It’s literally a blank notebook so it is what you make of it. You write out your weeks, your days, your plans. It is what you make of it.
I have seen very functional bullet journals and very elaborate ones filled with gorgeous brush lettering, watercolor, and even stickers. There are so many options like this watercolor spread by thebujoaddict or the linear blue spread below by bluelahe!
I am definitely a planner addict… all of these planners make me so happy. Hopefully seeing all of the styles laid out makes a little more sense. There are probably even more planning styles I don’t know about… leave a comment below and let me know what style you use!