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Choosing a Planner

Choosing a Planner

The final days of the year are upon us and if you have yet to purchase your planner yet (what are you doing whyyyyy), we thought this post would help you compare and decided the different layouts to pick! 


Traveler's Notebook offers three different diary options (Monthly, Weekly Vertical and Weekly Horizontal) for the regular size and two for the passport sizes (Monthly and Weekly). You can use either one or all three for recording or planning your year, the great thing about this system is that you can use them simultaneously with other inserts such as the blank or grid for scrapbooking, daily journaling or even note taking making it a very versatile planner system.

Pro: Versatile system, removable from leather cover when completed, great with all sorts of fountain and writing pens, easy to carry around and look worldly. Perfect for people who enjoy avocado on toast with chai lattes for Sunday brunch. 
Con: May be too narrow for some people as its A5 slim and not vegan friendly.

Monthly Layout // RM45

Weekly Vertical Layout // RM100

Weekly & Memo Layout // RM100
Weekly & Memo Set with Cover // RM300


If you've been following us since the beginning, you'll know how much we love our Japanese papers whether from MD Paper, LIFE or the dreamy cruise down Tomoe River lane.

The Hobonichi Planners come in three sizes: Techo (A6), Cousin (A5) and Weeks (Slim), they are one page a day type of planners while the Weeks is in weekly format. The beauty of this planner is that you can choose from so many uplifting, vibrant colors to take you through the year, you can also reuse them the following year by just purchasing the planner only.

According to the official website, Hobonichi Techo is a planner notebook created by staff members of the website Hobo Nikkan Itoi Shinbun, shortened as Hobonichi. Techo (pronounced “tetch-oh”) is a Japanese word for a planner notebook. Hobonichi Techo as a Life Book; it demonstrates the planner notebook’s versatility and freedom that accommodates every user’s unique personality and lifestyle.

It first came out as a 2002 edition, which was created when the members — who weren’t professional planner designers — decided to get together and create a brand new kind of planner that they would actually want to use themselves. Hobonichi also listens to customer feedbacks and improve them every year based on these requests and feedback. As of now, there are 780,000 users and counting all over the world!

Though seemingly simple, this planner's beautiful layout has been carefully designed to be intuitive and easy to use. The graph-lined paper contains lots of open space and it's light, durable Tomoe River paper means the book can be hundreds of pages long and still remain compact. All three Planner, Original, and Cousin books open completely flat and are comfortable to write in. Fountain pens glide effortlessly on its ultra-smooth paper though some inks may take slightly longer to dry compared to other types of paper. You can also paint on them with watercolor without any bleeding whatsoever.

Pro: Excellent paper, extremely smooth with fountain pens, can take watercolor, one day one page format to ensure you journal daily. Wide variety of covers to choose from, why buy just one, buy three, five, buy em all! Getting one will automatically get you into the Hobonichi cult where members will convince you to spend your life savings on more cute stationery. BUT it is then that you will learn that money does buy happiness. 
Con: Grid layout may not appeal for people who like blank or lined pages, book becomes chunky and heavy as the year progresses. Chiropractor not included. Most ink pads may cause bleeding to the back, now you don't want your pages to look like a used Clean & Clear Oil Control film do you? We recommend Versamagic Chalk inks.

MD 1 Day 1 Page Diary A5 Size

Clean and simple, like the MD Notebooks, the Diaries are made using the same prized MD paper - a among fountain pen aficionados, consisting of monthly schedule pages and 385 pages of free space, this diary allows you to chronicle your life in detail.

Pro: Simple and clean design, appeals to Muji fans and people who love wearing white pants. Can take watercolor and fountain pen inks super well. Also, cream paper is easier on the eyes when writing.
Con: Heavy straight out of the package but can be a pro as well because by the end of the year you'd have biceps. 2019 is the year of home workouts.

With plenty of blank space and a simple, easy-to-use format, this diary is ideal for jotting down your ideas and inspirations.

The free pages are designed to be customized to suit your style. Times from 8:00am to midnight are written down the left hand side so that you can schedule your day, and there is blank space on the right hand side so that you can keep a diary or draw pictures.

There are seven bullet points at the top so that you can make a to-do list or fill in the hours from 1 to 7.

Or use this blank area for more diary-writing and drawing.

MD DIARY 2019 A6/B6/A5

Based on the MD Notebook, this diary is simple and easy to use to stimulate your creativity.

With plenty of blank space and a simple, easy-to-use format, this diary is ideal for jotting down your ideas and inspirations. The monthly schedule pages have plenty of blank space around the edges so you can add notes and even drawings.

Pro: Lighter than the 1 Day 1 Page Diaries, less is more. Good for those who find filling a full page intimidating. If you can't write, you can always stick stuff? Check out our insanely wide selection stickers here. Great with fountain pens and can take watercolor as well, do you see a pattern in the notebooks we stock?
Con: Cover is soft and easily stained so must be used with a PVC, paper or goat leather cover. Actually these aren't even cons because c'mon the latter two covers are pretty awesome to touch!

These pages are designed so that you can combine your monthly plans with notes, to-do items and sketches of your ideas.

The note pages are divided into eight sections across a two-page spread, to make your weekly diary extra flexible.

You can write ideas, draw sketches and even use the whole two-page spread as a single canvas

LEUCHTTURM1917 | Weekly Planner, Weekly Planner & Notebook and Daily Planner

Unlike most blank journals, the Leuchtturm1917 has numbered pages which means you can find what you're looking for quickly with the help of the index on the first few pages. This makes tracking your pages and staying organized a piece of cake. Each notebook also come  with two distinct ribbons attached so if you’re bullet journaling you can keep tabs on two pages at the same time — like your weekly spread and to do list for example.


Weekly Planner & Notebook: Every double page features one page with the full calendar week and a lined notebook page on the right. Available with both a hardcover or a softcover. For 12 or 18 months.

Weekly Planner: A section with enough space for several lines for every day of the week. One week on every double page.

Daily Planner: An entire page for each working day. To keep the calendar as slim as possible Saturday and Sunday share a page.

Each book also comes with the following items:

•Phases of the moon
•Official holidays in 58 countries
•Project plan
•Detachable sheets for notes
•Gusseted pocket
•2 Page marker
•Elastic enclosure band
•Sticker for labelling and archiving
•With extra booklet for anniversaries and addresses

Pros: Comes in a wide spectrum of colors and looks super classy. If you get at least seven of them you can build your own rainbow at home. If you want to look important and like you have life figured out, this is the journal for you. While the paper isn’t graded as particularly heavy duty, it can still take light watercolors, brush pens, and fountain pens.
Con: Slight ghosting, but doesn't bother most people cos we're all used to it in real life.


Mossery notebooks and planners went through a massive paper upgrade recently and we're so happy to report that they are able to take a variety of writing and highlighting pens. Plus it's suitable for fountain pen, brush pen, ball point pen, and micron pens!

Mossery's brand has always been fun and inspiring, just scroll through their Instagram page for heaps of creative ideas and ways to use their products! They also have a wide collection of planner stickers which you can use in your journals!

Pros: Comes in so many awesome, cute, funky designs. Paper upgrade makes it even more awesome now, comes in hardback now which means you can throw around your planner and it will stand 365 days of abuse and still love you back. Contains page prompts to document inspirations and doodles.
Cons: Hardbacks can be difficult to close if you choose to stick all sorts inside, best used for writing and note-taking. Stickers and sticky notes welcomed. Nobody will take you 
seriously if you choose a cute pattern. 
Pro: You shouldn't take life seriously anyway, you do you.


Rather than being limited to a single calendar year, the Jibun Techo is a “lifebook” designed to to last your entire life. In Japanese, “jibun” (ジブン) means “myself” and “techo” (手帳) means planner. True to its name, this planner system is customizable to your lifestyle and needs.

The JIBUN TECHO notebook is packed with pages that have been carefully designed to make it fun and easy to look back on the entire year. Along with a detailed monthly and weekly layout, you’ll also find pages to document your goals, wishlists, recommendations, family tree and other little hand details such as the weather and your meals.

Pros: So so so so many little details to jot down making it really fun! Uses both Tomoe River and Kokuyo MIO Paper, write on these and you will never look at other journals the same again. The Diary and Idea use Tomoe River paper, while the Biz Diary and Life feature Kokuyo MIO paper.
Con: Your handwriting has to be like size 6 font, otherwise an Extra Fine nib will be your BFF. The only color we have left is Pink.

So that's it for now, we'll try to add more planners in the days to come but we hope this list helped somewhat and don't take what we say too seriously! It's best to come to the store to check out the planners in person, feel the papers, see our samples and hopefully, you'll find your new best friend to navigate the new (and often scary) year together. Happy new year!

Previous article INKTOBER 2019: Our Artworks
Next article Choosing A Sketchbook


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