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I remember when I was first interested in starting a bullet journal, I felt a little put off by all of the information out there.
It’s easy to get caught up looking at all of the fancy bullet journal spreads and expensive supplies.
But when you’re just starting out, the expensive supplies aren’t always the best when it comes to bullet journals
For one, more expensive doesn’t always equal higher quality.
And also, if you’re anything like me, you’re going to make mistakes and need practice before you perfect your bullet journal routine.
So there’s no need to spend money on a million different expensive supplies when you’re still a bullet journal beginner.
That’s why today I thought I’d share my favorite affordable bullet journal essentials for beginners! 🙂
– A notebook
Well, duh. There’s no bullet journal without a notebook.
You can literally use any kind of notebook for this – it’s up to you.
There are lined journals, dotted journals, or unlined journals.
This Artfan dotted journal is just $7 and I’m currently using it.
I’ve also tried the LEUCHTTURM 1917 that most people recommend for around $20-25 and honestly, there’s no difference in quality for me.
– Basic pencils + pens
When I’m drawing out a spread, I like to use a pencil first and then go over it with pretty markers and pens.
For this, you can use literally any pencil, but I use BIC mechanical pencils, which cost just $5.
I love Pentel Wow! pens for the regular writing I do in my journal. They write so smoothly and it costs just $10 for 18 of them. This is great because I’m constantly losing pens, haha!
I also use Sakura Pigma Micron pens for outlining things and for drawings. These definitely aren’t essential for everyone though.
– Pretty pens/markers
Now it’s time for the fun supplies! Pretty pens and markers are a must-have for creating pretty spreads.
I’ve tried so many different pens and markers so I’m going to link to the favorites that I’m using right now:
- Staedtler Triplus Fineliners – These are pretty inexpensive at $20 for a pack of 20. I’ve tried less expensive fine-liners, and Staedtler is much more high quality!
- Posca Paint Pens – This is a case where you’re definitely paying for quality. I’ve tried less expensive brands of paint pens and they were pretty much a waste of money. But I love Posca! I currently use this set and this set. It’s about $45 for both sets but if you want to use acrylic paint in your journal as I do sometimes, I recommend these! You can read my review of them right here.
- Zebra brush pen – I use this pen for the calligraphy that I do on occasion. It’s only $4 and it works so well!
You can also use colored pencils if that’s something that appeals to you. I use these Sargent Art colored pencils sometimes, but I don’t use them too often.
If you’re going to be using your bullet journal for any planning purposes, highlighters are so useful!
I like to use gel highlighters and the brand I’m currently using is from a local store and I can’t find them online, but they’re similar to this pack of 8 for $8.
I love the different pastel-y colors and I prefer gel because they don’t smudge or bleed.
– A pen case
When it comes to bullet journals, where you have a bunch of supplies, a pen case is essential. You can stay organized and keep all of your tools in one place.
I’m currently just using a cute bag that I got with my Ipsy subscription. 🙈
But I also have my eye on this large pencil case from Amazon because it has so much room!
– Some extras:
- Stickers – Stickers are a fun and easy way to decorate your bullet journal and make it pretty. Here’s a huge pack of stickers that you can make use of for a while. Along the same lines, stamps can be fun too!
- Learning tools – Having resources to give you ideas for your bullet journal and show you how to use it and what it can be used for is essential. There are so many books out there that can be a ton of help with this. There’s The Bullet Journal Method, written by the inventor of the bullet journal. There’s How to Bullet Plan if you want to use your bullet journal as more of a planner. There’s also Creative Journaling if you want to use your bullet journal as more of a creative outlet.
- Washi tape – You can use washi tape for so many things when it comes to your bullet journal. You can use it as tab dividers, use it as sticky notes, decorate with it, or I’ve even seen it used to cover up mistakes in design. Here’s a blog post from Diary of a Journal Planner with 40 creative bullet journal washi tape ideas!
- Stencils and rulers – Stencils and rulers are so helpful when it comes to making sure you have straight lines, perfect circles, and so much more. Here’s an awesome pack of journal stencils that you can get for $10!
– An all-in-one set:
If you want an easier or less expensive way to get started, you can also purchase an all-in-one set like this one! It comes with a journal, stencils, stickers, washi tape, fineliners, and a gel pen. It’s the perfect way to get started with bullet journal essentials on a budget!
These are my bullet journal essentials for beginners! What do you think of this list? Let’s chat in the comments!