***This post may contain affiliate links. See my "Disclaimer" link for additional details.***
I constantly see pictures of people's HUGE planner stashes.
Pink tool boxes full of crafting paper and random note cards. Desks piled high with drawers full of supplies. Makeup cases jammed with markers, stamps, and washi tape.
I'm obviously in favor of organizing whatever planner supplies you happen to have or I wouldn't share ideas for storage.
But I'm going to propose something very unpopular. (And you'll still love me, because I totally just did that Jedi mind trick have wave motion.)
Stop buying all those accessories!!!
You don't need all of that. Sure, for scrapbooking, accessories are important. And you might find some things that help you use your planner. If so, use them. Anything that helps you use your planner is a good thing. But as I explained in this post a couple of years ago, simple accessories will suffice. (It's also a brilliant and often overlooked post. Go read it!)
But please, don't think for a minute that you can't plan well enough or aren't a real planner just because all those fancy accessories are NOT in your budget.
If you use a planner, you are a real planner.
Other than the planner and the inserts (or just the planner, if it is not ring-bound), you only need one item: a pencil or ink pen.
There are a few other things that I recommend, but only because they are incredibly inexpensive and they save you significant time or money in the long run.
But remember, these are not NEEDS. These are optional WANTS.
Scissors (Cost: probably free)
Do you have scissors at home? Great! You are all set for trimming any homemade pages. Just use your current inserts as templates.
Cheap Memo Paper (Cost: free to under $10 dollars)
I like colorful blank pages, like these
that are the right size for a Franklin Covey compact or Filofax personal (especially a wider one like a Malden) planner.
You could also use free graph paper like I did in this post.
If you don't mind trimming, just use any paper hanging around the house.
TIP: Save the planet by using the back side of school papers from your kid's schoolbag. Just use the blank side.
Hole Punch (Cost: under $3)
A single hole punch is a great way to punch those blank memo pages or a printable form for your planner. Just use another page from your planner as a template.
TIP: Binder clip the template page to 1 - 4 other pages then punch for perfect hole alignment. Here is a quick DIY lesson on doing just that!
So far, all of these items save you money because you can make your own custom inserts.
But a few items are very inexpensive (can I say cheap???) and save enough time that I think you might consider them, if you can afford it. If you can't, remember, a cheap planner (I'll even be okay if it is not ring-bound) and a pen is all you really need!
Post-it Notes (Cost: under $3)
Post-it Notes allow you to move items from day-to-day and week-to-week. Not only is that a time saver, but it saves ink or pencil, too. (Okay, not as much money worth of ink as the notes cost. But when I explain my Amazon order to my tightwad husband, I am DEFINITELY pulling out that argument.)
Page Markers (Cost: free to under $4)
Magnetic Page Markers are my addiction of choice, but if you have a large paperclip hanging around, hey, free page marker.
Tabs (Cost: under $3)
truly do stick well and hold up. I use them to mark projects (with my special indexing system that can be made with one of those free memo pages I talked about before), but they work as dividers if that is all you can afford right now.
Of course, planning is a hobby as much as it is a lifestyle and a responsibility, so feel free to spend more if you have it. But PLEASE don't think planning has to be expensive or complicated! It doesn't.
If you enjoy what you read at Giftie Etcetera, please share on social media. Click here to join the Giftie Etcetera Facebook group.