Anatomy of a Filofax (My 2015 Planner Setup)

Despite being a long-time planner, I put my beloved Filofax aside in favor of a quick-fix when I forgot to order daily page refills for 2014 (oops!). I felt like I needed a break from the world of planners and accessories, which can become overwhelming in a few swipes of Instagram (have your ever checked out the #filofaxlove tag? It’s a black hole of stationery!). But with a horde of inspiration and some encouragement from friends, I’ve decided to plunge back into my Filofax full force this year!

Filofax Setupfilofax-metropol
Some planner is better than no planner, but I find that I’m more willing to keep my Filofax up-to-date if it’s organized to suit just what I need — room for daily events, to dos and tasks, and even a place to jot down my lunches (decorating helps, too!) keep my brain free of  clutter. The decorating is the easy part. But aside from a cohesive color scheme and pretty papers, what should you include in your planner to make it functional and yours?

Setting Up Your Planner

  1. Dashboard – Probably the most fun part.  How great is it to open up your planner to a colorful home base! Using vellum or some other sheer texture lets you stick sticky notes and other reminders in a place they’ll be noticed and not forgotten. I keep some spare washi tape on there too since it peels off easily while retaining its stickiness.
  2. Dividers – Making dividers is actually quite simple! Stock up on some patterned scrapbooking paper, use your current dividers as a template, and start cutting! Tabs are great for keeping your actual calendar separate from notes and other lists in your planner, with everything neatly in its place.
  3. Calendar pages – Maybe you’re a month-at-a-glance person, or perhaps you prefer viewing a week at a time. Personally, I like both (though a daily view usually is too much for me). While brands like Filofax offer their own calendar pages, you can also customize your own or find a more suitable layout on Etsy. The good news? Most Etsy templates are downloadable so you can print them at home and have your planner ready to go in no time.
  4. Page marker – Losing your place can be just as disorienting as not having a planner at all. While most planners come with some bookmark-like insert to clip into that day’s page as a placeholder, you can certainly find some alternatives to fit in with your planner’s color scheme and decorations.
  5. Lists/printables – Why stop at daily calendars? I like to include paper and templates in the other sections of my planner to keep track of things like blog posts, library books, and general to-do lists. You can find pre-made templates online — both free and paid — or customize your planner to suit how you use it!
  6. Pens – I’m picky about my pens and solely use a Pilot Precise V5* to do my main writing. For color-coding and decoration I keep a pencil case full of Paper Mate Flair* colored pens on hand, but otherwise, no other pens come near my Filofax (because I’m an organizational freak, apparently).
  7. Bling – Once you’ve got the basics down, go ahead and decorate! For me, that means stickers, fancy page markers (hello-o Target $1-bin!), purikura, fun sticky notes, and the exclusive Studio Calico‘s Agenda class stamps to make my week more colorful. You can find a plethora of charms and stickers on Etsy, too!

Click play to see my own Filofax and how I plan to make the most of my planner in 2015!
A lot of you have spied the custom calendar pages that Alexis of Strange & Charmed made me and loved all of the room for planning and lists. If you’ve been on the hunt for a balanced calendar page to plan your 2015, you’re in luck — Alexis is offering Teacup readers an exclusive 20% all items in the Strange & Charmed shop for the duration of January. Just use the code Teacup to get planning!

Filofax Setup
*These are affiliate links that will help out the Teacup if you decide to purchase any of these products!

What are your must-haves for organizing your planner?

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  • Alice

    I’m still using a daily Moleskine planner (the big one), because I like to have enough space to glue a movie theater ticket or jot down personal notes. But all this #filofaxlove is contagious!

    • / Kristin

      It really is contagious! I’m thinking of going up a size next time, since sometimes I write A LOT, but it would be nice to collect things like stubs, too, even though I don’t really save my pages once the year is over.

  • Sonya

    I’ve been trying to make my Filofax even more fun this year. I’ve got some cute little sticky notes that I found buried in my desk, so I’m going to start using those, plus I have way too much washi tape saved in my Etsy favorites, along with some rainbow notepaper. My favorite is my little zip pouch, though, because it lets me save stickers and notes and concert tickets somewhere convenient. Your planner is so cute, though; it’s perfect Filofax inspiration!

    • / Kristin

      I just got a regular notebook that has a zip pouch and I love the idea of keeping something like that handy; in your Filofax seems like the perfect location! I’ve got to get better at making my planner more fun xD Etsy, ahoy!

  • Kay

    I think this has just swayed me onto the Filofax train. I’ve been looking for a new planner that allows me to do more in one organized manner, and so far I just haven’t been impressed with anything I’ve found. This looks perfect! I’m off to begin my wishlists! 😀

    • / Kristin

      Another victim! Ehrm, I mean, fan? :) I really love how customizable you can make it, and there’s plenty of goodies out there for it because of it being a popular brand/size/etc. Good luck!

  • taylor

    stationery and i have a love affair as well. I LOVE your planner!! nothing is more fun than decorating with tabs, washi tape, etc. :)

    • / Kristin

      Thank you! It’s addictive :)

  • Regina @ Vintage 1973

    Next to the Filo, the pen IS the most important piece! Yours is pretty. I am hoping to just use mine more thoroughly and then make it pretty later on.

    • / Kristin

      The pen really does make a difference! I find that getting into the habit of using it works best, that way you can kind of see what “areas” need some decoration :) Best of luck!

  • Mariko

    Gosh you are organized. I love the look of a creatively laid out planner, but I’m far too lazy and forgetful to make one myself.

    • / Kristin

      Hahaha, why thank you! I certainly put on my best organizing face for this post. I’m usually not too bad, but sometimes it becomes one of those things that just makes sense to me.

  • Lisa

    My must haves are definitely washi tape. I use it for decoration and to colour code the different things I need to plan for.

    • / Kristin

      I never thought to use it to color code! Great idea!

  • Mary Johnson

    I just ordered my first filofax! I’m so excited to be able to customize my planner. I love your “Currently” sticky notes. Where did you get them?