The countdown is over — not only for the new year, but for the yearly tradition of making a DIY planner.

Despite having a busy work schedule, I’m glad that I was still able to find time away from the computer and move to the craft table. This is my 9th year of making my own planner and it’s a never-ending process of gathering ideas, mixing and matching templates, and deciding which designs I will use for the final product. DIY Projects are pretty much similar to writing a story where a lot of planning and revising are done.

I’ll try something different this time. Instead of posting a step-by-step procedure on how I made the planner, I’ll post work in progress pictures for every section of the planner.


  • number and letter stamps
  • red, blue, and black stamp pads
  • Tombow N75 (very light gray)

The layout of the days is always the trickiest part of making the planner. I had to carefully plan the number of weeks per month and match it with the number of sheets of paper that I should use. The spaces for the days were small because (1) my handwriting is small, (2) my deadlines usually run for weeks so I usually write the start and end dates, and  (3) I use it more as a to do list than a notes page. If I have notes that go along with the tasks, I type them down on Google Drive (because eventually I will need to share it with my workmates). In my previous planner, I used colored paper and washi tape if I needed more space for more to do lists. It makes my planner look more busy and colorful. Maybe for a future post, I can show how I fill and write on my planner.


I’m into patterned paper lately.  I tried making my own patterns in my 2015 planner, but I didn’t have the luxury of time to design my own patterns for this year. Thankfully, I received a set of patterned stationery paper during a Secret Santa. Bingo. I had something to use for the covers of each month.

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  • excess paper
  • Fountain pen (felt fancy writing that. lol but it’s just a cartridge fountain pen, it’s not even the legit one. I’ll get to that soon.)
  • Brush pen
  • Gold paint + black paper

For the monthly calendar that came with the covers, I used an idea from Chicfetti. The original used brush calligraphy to write the months. I’m still learning how to do brush calligraphy properly so I’ll save that for another planner. I borrowed an idea from scrabble and made tiled letters to spell out the months.


  • DMC Thread (420… I think)
  • Needle

I only had two signatures (January to June and July to December) for the planner. I used a simple binding for the signatures because I wasn’t feeling adventurous to try another binding. Coptic binding is too tedious and I think I was too traumatized with the Hemp Leaf that I tried last year. haha

Shout out to my dad who used his fancy small drill to make holes in my signatures. If you know where I can buy an awl in the Philippines (preferably from a store and not online), please let me know. It’s still in my crafting wish list.

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  • Illustration board
  • Excess paper (ripped and used as outer covering)
  • Recycled paper bag (used as inner lining)
  • Gold paint

I finally was able to use the last of my illustration board. I bought the huge illustration board in my 2013 planner and kept the excess for future use. It has gone a long way and has served as a cover for my 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2017 planners. The last of it is on the 2018 planner. Will I buy a new illustration board for next year? We’ll see. I still have a lot of scrap cardboard that I can use.

Oh, and I took inspiration from for the gold pattern cover.


  • Patterned page from an adult coloring book

If a woman likes pockets in her dresses, I like pockets for cards and other knick knacks. I used a tutorial online to make an origami 3-pocket card holder. It flips like a page so I am able to hold more cards. I just have to be careful not to stuff too many cards because the holder is only made out of thick paper. I probably should have thickened it up with another sheet of paper or board paper. I can try again on the next planner.


Here’s a signed print of Andy Karl for your viewing pleasure. No other explanation needed.


The excess paper from the main planner was used to make a small notepad.


And lastly, I purposely cut a long piece of thread when I did the binding. I didn’t cut the thread after securing it with a knot. I used the excess thread and beads to make a bookmark. I have a whole container of beads from old necklaces and tassels. They came in handy again this year.

Tadah, I’m ready to fill out the spaces with new tasks. Hopefully I get to plan my tasks according to and towards my life goal. But first, I have to figure out my life goal.

[See this post on Pinterest]

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