Page Layout Tricks: Make Your Own Stencils

One of the hardest parts of keeping up with my bullet journal is laying out my daily pages (in an upcoming post, you can see the layout of my journal). Something that I created that has made all the difference for me is stencils. Using a ruler for everything little thing can be annoying, especially if you are anything like me and like instant gratification and also have limited time.

Things you will need:img_0590

  • Post-It notes (or any paper, really. I prefer post-its because they are already cut small, so they are easier to envision a shape with on your page)
  • Ultra Clear Packing Tape
  • Scissors
  • A sharpie


First, I created my very first layout. I decided what I wanted to log every day. I log my tasks, the weather, the date & day of the week, my food intake, my water intake, step count, workout time and activity, a quote of the day and then either a song of the day or reason I’m happy in the extra space. Not everyone has to put this much for their daily logs. Some people only log tasks, or only log food and water. It doesn’t matter. The biggest thing to remember with a bullet journal is that is a completely blank canvas for you to create it to be whatever you want or need it to be.

I decided I wanted a more open concept instead of having everything in its own box. This meant that only certain sections needed a stencil for a box. The things I wanted in a block or needed structure were my food intake, water intake, and I wanted to do a banner block for the quote of the day.

From there, I did the following to create my waterproof, wipe-able, durable, stencils:

  1. Cut post-its in desired shape (remember to lay them out on your page to see if you like the size, shape, etc)img_0591
  2. Lay out a single piece of packing tape, sticky side up.
  3. Lay the pieces of paper on the tape, ensuring no air bubbles pop up and that it is flat and smooth (if the piece is too big to be covered right away, take an additional piece of tape and lay sticky side up. Then place the rest of the exposed paper of the piece to it, creating only a small overlap).
  4. Take another piece of packing tape and cover the opposite side of the piece, totally encasing the piece is the tape.
  5. Cut away excess tape and reveal the piece.
  6. Take a sharpie and mark each piece for what you will be using it for (food log, H2O log, quote header, etc).

And there you have your own stencils for your journal! These are flat enough to store within the pages of your journal or can even be used a book mark.

Using Your Stencils

img_0597A trick I use is to use a small piece of scotch tape and temporarily tape the stencil to the page so it does not move as you are tracing your shape.

It is not necessary to use each stencil every day, but they will definitely hold up if you do!

Have fun with stencils! They are there to be able to make your life easier! People always see examples of bullet journals and think that they are too much work. If you have the proper tools and feel comfortable with your set up and commit yourself to using it for various things, you will see that bullet journals are very useful. I love checking off things in my tasks.img_0598

Remember that bullet journals are here to help you, and they are yours to make your own. There is no right or wrong way to do it. I enjoy brush script, so that’s why I use it in my journal. It is not a necessity. I also find that journaling like this is very stress relieving because it is 15 minutes a day that you just focus on your goals and on yourself. My journal has been nothing but beneficial.

I hope you found this tip helpful! Happy Journaling!


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