Customized planners

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Club covers stack

This is a topic that comes up occasionally: would you be interested in a completely customized planner?

I’m not talking about just customized covers. If you could build your planner from the ground up, what would it look like?

We had a lot of great comments on the Monthly Pages post, so those seem to be important to a lot of people. Would your custom planner include monthly pages? If so, would the weeks start with Sunday or Monday?

What about your daily or weekly pages in your custom planner? Would you like to choose a format from a selection of pre-made templates? Or would you like to design and tweak your own format for printing?

What other features are important: notes pages, holidays, other designs?

Then think about the construction of the planner itself. What paper would you choose? Would you want white or cream paper? Would you like thick, fountain pen friendly paper or thinner paper resulting in a lighter book? What cover materials would you choose? What type of binding?

And, the bottom line: custom planners are more expensive than off-the-rack ones. How much would you be willing to pay for a customized planner?

10 thoughts on “Customized planners

  1. I’ve made custom planners with a Moleskine for some years. It’s tough to find something that’s well made, has Monday as first day of the week, etc. I don’t love Moleskine’s paper, though.

  2. I prefer pages with very little structure when it comes to monthly and weekly layouts, I love blank pages and no decor, minimal information.
    Daily pages have to be at least an A5 size for me, and I prefer lined pages for this layout.
    I really miss weekly review pages and monthly summaries, also an index, if it were possible (maybe two or three pages) at the beginning of the planner. This is very important to me and that’s probably why I tend to buy more filofax-like planners and less bound planners.
    I would love to be able to choose my pages format, and maybe add more than just one weekly calendar into one single planner.. ‘make the planner as thick as you like :D’
    Paper quality and color don’t matter much to me… but the binding must be good.
    I would pay, I’d say 40 or 50$ for one planner

  3. Yes, I’d be interested in a customized planner for personal use. The Hobonichi-Techo planner has been almost a perfect fit so far, and I’d like to see a competitive paper planner from QuoVadis. The Notor comes close, but since it doesn’t have monthly pages in a larger grid format, I’ve had to switch for 2015. Perhaps I will take a look at the Habana Daily Pocket again to see if it could possibly work…

    My planner requirements:
    – Monthly pages, with Saturday and Sunday having their own space. I really like the grid layout used in the Hobonichi-Techo. I don’t really care if the week starts with a Sunday or Monday.
    – Daily pages.
    – Notes pages.
    – A page that lists all months in the year in a grid format.

    A page of holidays is nice to have, but it’s actually better for me to see the holidays on the daily pages.

    As for preferences, I really liked Notor’s white paper. I think it’s superior to the Hobonichi-Techo paper, and I really miss the feel of this paper.

    The binding can be similar to Notor’s binding, though I feel like it has been getting sloppy in recent years. Maybe I’ve been getting lemon Notor planners, but the last 2 years (2014 and 2013), the binding was a little sketchy in some areas. I think there were a few pages that had some misplaced glue near the binding area and I had to tear them a little to keep the book open.

    The size of the planner should be no larger than the Notor. I wouldn’t mind re-using my Notor’s covers for it. Soho or a Club cover works for me.

    The ability to choose a format from a selection of pre-made templates sounds really nice. I also like the idea of being able to design/tweak my own format, but, to be honest, I probably won’t have the time to do it.

    Price: $70 at most. Any higher, and I’d just find something else to use.

  4. Absolutely. My ideal would be a) Space 24 with MO2P calendars and remove the timed slots, ala Moleskine weekly notebook.

  5. The short answer is yes. I have been drawing my own planner out in a Leuchtturm1917 after trying a million planners, being unsatisfied with the pre-made DIY options, and not wanting to fiddle with template making on the computer. I’ve played with buying planners from companies that let you customize some stuff (like personal-planner.com), but I am not willing to pay that much for something that isn’t exactly what I want.

    Ideally, I would be able to customize everything from the paper and ink color to the cover, pre-printed information, and the lines/boxes on the pages. If I could truly customize every aspect of my planner, well, I’d probably be willing to pay a premium price (for me that would be over $50 for a one-year planner). I’ve created a youtube video of my custom planner if you’re interested in seeing the very specific features I like.

  6. Hmmm, I’m up for a customized planner. I would like the ability to choose monthly pages as part of my planner (Principal, but I’m leaning towards a Septanote for the next academic year), as well as a few extra notebook refills (you know, those slim ones that fit like the removable address books).

    I can’t think of what else, but that would keep me from looking over at a certain competitor’s website and groaning at the color scheme, but envying the monthly pages.

    Oh, and more classic colors for the covers, like a deeper green, or blue. Yellow, even, but more mustard-like, and less neon.

  7. From my perspective and my ‘go to’ planner – nothing has come close to the Trinote/Septanote in terms of quality and its closest to my picture of a desk planner. I will still use the Septanote this year for work (in addition to a new planner I am trialling as bedside personal planner – which is fantastic).
    The only improvement I suggest for them is

    a. Include Monthly pages – This gives a lot of fliexibility without taking away the essence of the weekly format. It also takes away the need for an extra planner or DIY fixes.

    b. Have the Sunday in the same line as the weekly columns as the Minister Prestige.( I think it just has half a column on the same lines as the other days)

    For me it does not matter if the week begins Mon or Sun. Pages is white for me. I use the hybrid inks so the present paper is pefect.

    Other suggestions are pen clip , more notes pages in between sections, stickers for tabs if required.

    All I can say is – smaller tweaks in steps are best as they do not change the planner all of a sudden and can be quickly withdrawn.

  8. Oh my yes! Especially as I went the DIY route this year. It all comes down, however, to cost. I don’t want to fess up to the hours I spent with inDesign so far to come up with my not-quite-finished version…

    I’m definitely willing to trade-off some of my super-custom features to have some of the formatting and binding headaches taken care of for me.

    If it’s fully customizable, I don’t see why the option for Sun/Mon start couldn’t be left up to the user when ordering, it might require a few more templates but i’m a vocal in my love of mon-start and know others are very much desiring sun-start.

    I think a selection of some standard templates with the ability to add in some custom holidays and other notes to specific dates would have me very happy.

    While i love thick paper for my fountain pens and highlighting, it’s expensive and even if it created the planner of my dreams, i don’t think i could afford it.

    i very much would love to discuss this more!

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