Planner Inspiration for Weirdos
October 15, 2015 9:17 AM   Subscribe

Where can I find inspiration for planner decoration that is geared towards various alternative/weirdo types - e.g. queers, geeks, artists, activists, certain subcultures?

I've gotten into a rabbithole of planner porn lately and everything's been so pretty - I really enjoy seeing how people use stickers (especially functional ones), tape, and all sorts of scrapbooky techniques to jazz up and add functionality to their planners.

However, I've noticed that a lot of the resources out there tend to share very similar aesthetics: bright or pastel colors, "kawaii" stickers that are pretty much the exact same eyes & face on inanimate objects, washi tape by the dozen, stickers from the same batch of Etsy stores, cutesy and inspirational. This video is a good example. It feels like WASPy Basic White Girl meets Pinterest meets Proto-Soccer-Mom.

My tastes veer towards gothy geeky queer rockstar radical, and I'm trying to find inspiration for planner decor (or even just planners full stop) that have those kind of aesthetics or principles. For example, this Harry Potter planner looks really cool.

I'm aware of the Slingshot organizer and the myriad of planners geared towards Wiccans and Pagans; however, I am mostly interested in the ways people decorate their planners, especially if they're taking more generic planners and customizing them for their own use.
posted by divabat to Grab Bag (17 answers total) 35 users marked this as a favorite
There is a Facebook group called Bigger on the Inside that might be appealing. You could join and ask them. Of the planner groups I'm in, this is the one that is closest, I think. Here are some photos.

There is also DIY Planners & Organizers.

The whole !decorate!the!planner! thing was a shock to me upon joining these and other FB planner groups after 30-some years of devoted planner love.
posted by jgirl at 9:48 AM on October 15, 2015

I have the same issues - can't tell you the number of times I've gone down the sticker aisle at the craft store hoping THIS is the time they'll have roller derby stickers.

Have you looked at Midori planners? They're basic enough for a starting point, and can easily turn into notebooks similar to Indiana Jones's father's Grail Journal (which is my personal favorite).

I've also taken to creating my own scrapbooky items (if you iron freezer paper to fabric you can put it through a printer, Avery mailing labels turned into stickers of my own design).
posted by Lucinda at 9:53 AM on October 15, 2015 [4 favorites]

This... this is not my forte.
I don't even understand what the tape is for.

But you can definitely find gothy geeky queer rockstar radical stickers (or at least subsets of each of those things).
black lace tape is pretty gothy. Goth washi paper has more results and I don't even know what washi paper is (other than tape!).

In the style of the Harry Potter planner, maybe google Book of Shadows decorations for similar ideas?

Rather than paper bookmarks, you could tie coloured ribbons to one end of the journal, and weight the ends with metal charms?
posted by Elysum at 9:54 AM on October 15, 2015

I get a lot of stickers and stuff at Redbubble. It's not exactly the kind of planner-specific stuff you're looking for, but for decorating the cover of a planner or something, you might find some things you'd like. I've bought stuff in the Marvel fandom, Firefly, Jane Austen, The Clash, Gilbert & Sullivan, and more. If you love it, somebody there probably loves it to, and has made a sticker for it.
posted by not that girl at 10:13 AM on October 15, 2015 [2 favorites]

I too love planners, organizing, etc, and feel really stifled by the cis/white/monied/WASPvibe of the very very very gendered planning videos I see everywhere.

I've had the most luck looking for planner videos involving original artwork and sketching (whether it be doodle or watercolor) rather than washi tape and the like. It still inspires me to create, but is a bit less materialistic and stereotypically feminine.

I have a Midori Traveler's notebook and like it because it's just brown leather. When I use Washi Tape, I veer towards, space, animals, etc. Basically, I try to cultivate an 19th century encyclopedia vibe instead of a 17 year old japanese girl vibe.

All that's left is to find specific geeky/queer folks. I'll report back if any come to mind, but I'm drawing a blank right now. Adding this to activity, because I'm very interested in the responses you get!
posted by sazerac at 10:29 AM on October 15, 2015 [1 favorite]

Best answer: You might have already seen this planner post from The Everyday Goth. Which led me to the #gothplanner hashtag on Instagram.

I ordered some interesting washi tape recently from Meowashitape on Etsy - right now they have fireflys, galaxy zodiac, anatomy, and medical instruments.
posted by Squeak Attack at 10:35 AM on October 15, 2015 [2 favorites]

I've had the most luck looking for planner videos involving original artwork and sketching (whether it be doodle or watercolor)

This is a focus of Bigger on the Inside. I don't know if non-members can see the photos, and you will have to scroll past some generic stuff, but much of the work is fabulous.
posted by jgirl at 10:38 AM on October 15, 2015

Thank you for identifying exactly what rubs me the wrong way about so many of the planner groups I'm in - I knew something was wrong, I just couldn't put my finger on what, exactly.

Unfortunately, best as I can tell, most planner groups on FB are currently overrun with nauseatingly precious white girls who think "basic bitch" is a compliment. Anyone want to start one for us non-cutesy planners?

I don't use too many stickers, but I've had good luck with Sticko stickers- so far I've found robots, shiny skulls, and a whole bunch of other things. There's also Look Human for queer/feminist stuff, although they might be too kawaii for you.
posted by Tamanna at 10:47 AM on October 15, 2015 [2 favorites]

Riotcakes: Accessorize for the System's Demise. They have stickers and bookmarks. Too cute?
posted by bibliotropic at 1:28 PM on October 15, 2015

Weirdly, I stumbled across this yesterday which is about a lady who sells monoprint kits making a bunch of planner dividers that I thought look really cool.
posted by Rube R. Nekker at 3:58 PM on October 15, 2015 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: @Jgirl: DIY Planners and Organizers is showing me "Content Unavailable", perhaps it's secret?
posted by divabat at 6:13 PM on October 15, 2015

Response by poster: AAAAAHHHHH Everyday Goth's link is PERFECT! More like that please - I like to see how people put together layouts :)
posted by divabat at 6:17 PM on October 15, 2015

Divabat, what kind of system do you use? Filofax, regular binder, a refillable, a bound journal? And what paper size? I'm using an A5 plastic binder as a starter and trying to figure out what to move to because none of the cutesy or business options work but none of the etsy-pagan ones seem to work either. What other options are there?? Surely there's more than work-blah, pastel-hell, or velvet-unicorns?
posted by dorothyisunderwood at 6:23 PM on October 15, 2015

Best answer: Okay, so I stumbled across "filofax planner" as a good search for images, so here is filofax planner goth. This post on grunge planners jumped out at me, which led to filofax planner grunge as a search.

This guy has a time management spiral stamp based on a Fibonacci sequence. I don't understand how it works, but it looks cool.
posted by Squeak Attack at 6:43 PM on October 15, 2015

Response by poster: @dorothyisunderwood: I don't have a paper system (mostly copious use of Google Calendar). I just got caught up in the PRETTY.
posted by divabat at 7:49 PM on October 15, 2015

Response by poster: So I went through the ideas in this thread, as well as some other searching, and started a Pinterest board. It's kinda heavy on the goth/spooky at the moment, with also a lot of steampunk and fandom. If you want to be a contributor PM me your email address!
posted by divabat at 9:53 PM on October 15, 2015

Well, I just tried to add you by email, and it said you were already a member. I guess you found it, although I imagine the pictures may only be seen by members.
posted by jgirl at 5:42 AM on October 16, 2015

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