Bullet Journals for Beginners: Choosing a Journal (Part 3) Leuchtturm1917
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Face it, bullet journals are awesome. But, if you’re a beginner, getting started can be overwhelming. It doesn’t need to be! This is the third installment in my new series Bullet Journals for Beginners, and I’m starting with the most important part—choosing the journal.
I’ve been reviewing different journals to help beginners find the right journal. Journals come in so many different types and sizes. You’ve got lined paper, grid paper, blank pages, and dotted. Spiral bound, softback, colored, leather…You see what I mean? So many choices.
Beginners, it doesn’t have to be that hard. It comes down to finding a journal that’s functional and makes writing and drawing easy.
In the first post of this series, I reviewed a basic graph paper journal. In the second, I reviewed the Tul Note Taking System. Today, I’m excited to review my current, and favorite, bullet journal — the Leuchtturm1917. (Pretend there were fireworks when you read its name because that’s how much I love it.) I’ll go over the features, pros, cons, and why, or why not, I think it works for a beginner.
Journal #3: Leuchtturm1917
You will find the Leuchtturm1917 discussed amongst serious bullet journalers (Yes, serious bullet journal circles do exist). Even though veteran journalists use it, I still think it makes a great journal for a beginner.
It comes in either dotted or lined paper. The one I’m reviewing today has dotted paper. If you’re a beginner, you may not know what I mean by dotted paper. Dotted paper is broken up into a grid pattern, but rather than having the entire grid visible, all you see is a dot where each corner of the grid would be. Basically, you get all the benefits of grid paper without all the grid, leaving more white space on the page.
On the outside, this journal doesn’t look like anything special, but on the inside, it’s kind of dreamy. It’s specifically designed with bullet journals in mind, which means it has a couple of unique features not found in generic journals.
Purchased from: Amazon
- Dotted paper
- Elastic closure
- Index pages
- Numbered pages
- 8 detachable pages in the back
- 2 ribbon markers
- Back storage pocket
- Buttery smooth dotted paper: I know. You’re probably asking yourself how paper can be buttery smooth, but it can. Confession: I sometimes flip through mine just to feel the paper. The paper feels thick and smooth, but not stiff. Ink doesn’t bleed through nor does it spread all over, creating spidery letters. Although I think the Tul paper is thicker, I still like the Leuchtturm’s better because it isn’t as stiff.
- Index pages: The index covers the first three pages. When I first got this journal, I didn’t know how much I would love having the index already set up. It’s fantastic. Creating an index takes a long time, and this one is ready to go as soon as you open the journal. The only downside I can see is if you end up filling the index pages before you fill the rest of the journal. However, that’s a risk you take with any bullet journal.
- Numbered pages: Numbering pages by hand can be tedious and takes up a lot of time. It’s one of my least favorite parts of a bullet journal. I love having the pages already numbered. It looks clean, organized, and I don’t have to worry about numbering the pages wrong, which has happened in past bullet journals.
- Ribbon markers: I think one ribbon marker is a basic necessity. This journal has two which is the perfect amount for me. I like to keep one on my calendar page and the other on my weekly page.
- Storage Pocket: The back storage pocket is just the right size to hold a few notes and a small ruler.
- No pen holder: I’m surprised this bullet journal doesn’t have a pen holder. Everything else about it is so well designed and thought out, yet…no pen holder. Does no one at Leuchtturm have a favorite pen they want to keep with their journal? If it had a pen holder, I don’t think I would ever use a different bullet journal again.
When it might be right for you:
I love this bullet journal far more than I probably should. I liked the functionality of the Tul, but the Leuchtturm makes my writerly heart flutter. There are other brands with dotted paper, but trust me when I say that the Leuchtturm’s paper is amazing. Though it costs more than a generic or even basic journal, the extra dollars are worth it. In my opinion, a beginner, intermediate, or long-term bullet journaler will be more than satisfied with the Leuchtturm1917.