Feb 8, 2016

DIY PLANNER (Tutorial, tips and tricks!)

For those who doesn't frequent coffee shops or ran out of budget to buy a planner or if you just want to customize your own, you can make your own DIY Planner just using your creativity! And probably some help from your local print shop. But anyway, making your own planner lets you include sections that you REALLY need, because let's be honest, store planners have lots of sections that we don't really use (read: bulkier than our school notebooks) and are just waste of paper and money. DIY planners can save you almost half of the price of the store planners, but you have to spend time with it! Don't worry! It's fun!

I've started making one just this November as a gift to my friend, from then, my mother asked me to make a few more for my brother's school teachers. This year I'm making my own and I want to share you my process of doing it!

First, you have to draft the sections of your planner and their number of pages.
And group them in total of four pages each group. This will help you in layout, printing and will make sure that there's no wasted space.

For example:

2016 Calendar with Holidays (1 page)
Letter to my 2017 self (2 pages)
Goals (1 page)

Wishlist (2 pages)
Monthly Savings (2 pages)

Homeworks (2 pages)
Meetings (2 pages)

(Weekly calendar view)
January  (4 pages)
 December (4 pages)

Memories (4 pages)
Doodle page (4 pages)
Notes (4 pages)
Contacts (4 pages)

The total pages should be ideally a multiple of four, and I usually end up with a 72-80 paged planner, depending on the number of sections and pages.

After that, I used Adobe Photoshop to layout the pages of my planner!
The usual size of each page is 8 x 5.5 in.
TIP: The planner will be ring-bound so allot at least .7 inch to the sides of the pages for punching holes, so when you are designing your pages, do not put necessary design elements here if possible.

From here, let your creativity flow!
I like to think of my color scheme and font family so from there, I could just play with the design elements.
If you are not familiar with the font sizes and spacing (aside from the 11 and 12 font sizes when doing school papers), especially on how it will look on printed paper, I'll give you some tips. Most of the time it depends on the font, but based on experience, 8-10pt is the smallest font size that is still readable on paper. For the writing lines, (Press Shift + - to produce a solid line _____  or  .  to produce dotted lines ..................), 16-20pt spacing is enough for someone to write on.

Here are some examples of my sections:




For the monthly sections, I intended to make it an open weekly calendar view, so the user will be the one to write the dates on and easier for me to layout. I just kept one .PSD file for it, so during printing, I'll be able to change the months.


For those who have their own printer like me, you can print them on a letter-sized paper (8.5 x 11 in)
Just cut-off the excess .5 inch in either top or bottom if you want or keep it that way. In my case, I am using an A4 size photo paper for my cover (8.2 x 11.6 inches) so I need to cut off the excess.

After printing, cut them in half and arrange the pages.

For the cover, I am using an A4 size photo paper, ideally 180-220gsm so it will be thick. I also saw Elle of Simply Caramelle make her own blog planner cover by laminating it so it will be sturdy. I recommend that if you usually stash your things inside your bag so to prevent folds and scratches. I actually plan of doing that even though I have a leather cover from an old planner.

So now that you have printed your planner pages, organized and topped them with the covers, you could now let your local print shop do the punching of holes and binding them! So for me, I just spent Php 25 for binding!
If you don't have your own printer, find a print shop that could print your pages for you at a low price or limit the colored pages.

Here's how it looked!




See? It's easy and fun!
Start making your own planner now!


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