If you’re new to bullet journaling, you’ve probably wondered what are the best bullet journal supplies. There are so many choices when it comes to notebooks, pens, markers, journals, etc, and it’s not always easy to tell if things are going to work well together.
I’ve tried out hundreds of different bujo supplies in my quest to find the best. In this post, I’ll show you my favorite bullet journal supplies for beginners and where you can buy them.
The Best Bullet Journal Supplies For Beginners
First of all, I just want to mention that you’ll hear some people say that you only need a pen and a notebook to do bullet journaling.
While this is true, it’s also a bit boring.
If you or the person you’re shopping for enjoys creativity and using special art supplies, it’s a lot more fun to have some variety in your bullet journal supplies!
So here’s a run-down of what supplies I would suggest for a bullet journal beginner:
- Bullet journal notebook
- Gel pens and felt-tip pens
- Highlighters and markers
- Rulers and stencils
- Washi tape and stickers
- Clips and accessories
- Bullet journal organizers
Keep scrolling to see my top picks in all these categories for bullet journal supplies!
Where To Buy Bullet Journal Supplies
You can buy bullet journal supplies from Amazon. I’ve got most of my bujo supplies from there because the price tends to be better than anywhere else. This is only true if I’m looking for brand-name stationery.
If I’m looking for the cheapest available, I check out stores like WalMart, Target (in the dollar spot), and Daiso (a Japanese “dollar store” type place, please google and see if there’s one near you and if there is GO! You can thank me later!).
Craft stores usually have a lot of great bullet journal supplies too, but it’s smart to check when they have sales because the prices will drop hugely for major sales. Michaels, Hobby Lobby etc all carry bujo and planner supplies.
Also, there are many specialty art supply stores (such as Dick Blick or Blick as it’s now known), Kinokuniya (a Japanese book store that also carries fine stationery supplies), and others.
Check out stores like Paper Source and other stores that sell paper-related art or craft supplies in your area.
1. Bullet journal notebook
In general, the notebook you use for your bullet journal should be sturdy and have good quality paper. You don’t want your ink showing through the pages, or the cover falling off after a month!
Here are some of my favorite options for bullet journal notebooks.
(I’ve listed my favorite one for creatives last in this list)
Leuchtturm1917 Bullet Journal
So this is one of the most popular bullet journal notebooks. They’re similar to Moleskine journals except they have numbered pages and a blank table of contents page.
The Leuchtturm1917 notebooks are 249 pages and about 6″ x 8″ (roughly the size of an A5 or half-letter paper).
I think these notebooks are fine for people whose creativity will mostly be expressed in the color of the notebook cover – in other words, they’re not ideal for people who want to make drawings or doodles in their bullet journals.
The reason I feel this way is that the paper in these notebooks is thin. The thinness is fine if you’re only using a pencil or pen, and don’t really worry about it showing through somewhat on the other side of the page.
The paper itself is wonderfully smooth, which makes writing in them with a ball-point pen, gel pen, or fountain pen rather pleasant.
I am a fan of the pre-printed table of contents as well as the numbered pages.
Like most notebooks in this category, the Leuchtturm1917 bullet journals have an elastic band that helps hold it shut, a couple of ribbon bookmarks attached to the spine, and a pocket in the back that you can use to hold your bitcoin wallet, letters from your secret admirer, an emergency $20 bill or the spare key to your apartment.
I’ve been using Moleskines myself – for YEARS – and I really love everything about them. They cost less than the Leuchtturm notebooks, and the quality is still excellent.
I still remember what a treat it was, buying my first Moleskine for myself when I was in college.
It felt like I was splurging- big time – on a luxury item that was just for me. Long story short, for $8 you’re getting one hell of a notebook.
Archer & Olive Bullet Journal Notebooks
I tried out the Archer & Olive notebooks earlier this year after hearing much hype about them.
Everyone was saying Archer & Olive, hands down, the BEST!
So, the selling point for these is that they have thick paper – so they shouldn’t have any issues with ghosting or bleeding.YOU MAY ALSO LIKEbest bullet journal notebook (Updated for 2019)
After trying it out for a while, I’ve concluded that I am a fan of the thicker paper. I like using markers and highlighters in my bullet journal, and with the thicker paper, it just never bleeds through. Even if I layer on the marker a few times in the same spot, it still won’t bleed through. It’s great!
I also like that the paper is bright white, instead of cream colored like journal paper tends to be.
This is 2019, the world expects white paper to be white, not yellow, so I’m a fan.
The only downside about A&O notebooks is the price. If you were already turning up your nose when you saw the price of the Leuchtturm1917 notebooks, you better not click below.
My Favorite Bullet Journal Notebook
…is actually not a notebook.
After testing out numerous notebooks at many price points, I still wasn’t finding what I wanted.
So that’s when I decided to create my own bullet journal / planner / organizer hybrid.
I didn’t want to keep writing out calendars and charts in my notebook (this felt way too mundane to me), so I designed my own simple templates for basic things like calendars, weekly planners, and habit trackers. I wanted them to be simple and elegant on their own, but with plenty of room for customization for people who like to decorate.
Then I tested out numerous papers until I found THE PERFECT one.
The paper I’m using to print my planners on is heavy enough that pens and markers don’t bleed through (not even my watercolor brush pens), but buttery smooth for enjoyable writing.
I love using a ring binder to keep all my homemade bullet journal pages. This way, I can re-arrange pages however I want.
Sometimes I purge all the used pages that I don’t need anymore and add fresh ones – then it’s like having a brand new bullet journal!
After letting some friends test out my bullet journal and planner pages, I have added them to the shop here on wellella.com.
They’re available digitally as PDFs that you can print out yourself as much as you want, or as a printed, physical item (on my amazing paper) that gets shipped to you.
Want a more in-depth look at bullet journal notebooks?
2. Gel pens and felt-tip pens for bullet journaling
Once you’ve picked your notebook, the next thing you’ll definitely need are some good pens. Why good pens? Well, your bullet journal will look a lot nicer if your writing and layouts look nice and neat. Using art-quality pens will help you get that precise look you want.
Uni Pin Fineliner Drawing Pens
Lots of bullet journalists recommend these Uni Pin fineliner pens. It’s easy to see why:
The ink is water-resistant, so you can use watercolors, highlighters or markers over the ink and it won’t smudge.
My personal favorite pens, though, are these super-duper fine point gel pens you see below. I first discovered them when I was in Japan over 10 years ago and I still buy them.
Here’s what I love about them:
- Unlike a felt-tipped fine point pen, these gel pens have metal nibs that won’t lose their sharpness even after extensive use.
- They’re perfect for making dainty drawings or minimalist bullet journal layouts.
You can also get them in an assortment of colors:
If you love decorative lettering, I recommend these brush pens that have a flexible brush tip.
I’ve tried many different brush pens and these are by far my favorite. I’ve been practicing my brush lettering every day using one of these pens and it has held up VERY well, unlike other brush pens I’ve used in the past. I love it that it comes in a pack of two, one harder and one softer, which allow you to write in two different sizes.
Read my pick for the best bullet journal fountain pen here. (Guess what? It’s NOT an expensive one!)
These basic gel pens are also perfect for starters:
Image from @booksnhighlighters via Instagram.
Another cute trend I’m seeing in bullet journals is watercolor. Watercolors literally add a “splash” of color to your bullet journal layouts and also breathe some life into the pages. I recommend using a journal with thicker paper if you intend to use watercolors in it.
My favorite watercolor set is this one:
I love this set because the colors are highly pigmented. I’ve been using this particular set for about three years and I kind of feel like it’ll last me forever!
Another option, that I think is slightly easier than a traditional watercolor set, but still perfect for that color-wash look, are these little kits:
This set has 20 colors. The tip of the pen is like an actual brush, to create a watercolor-like effect.YOU MAY ALSO LIKEDot Grid Printable PDF For Bullet Journal DIY or Planner Inserts + FREE DOWNLOAD
They are also available in pastel colors, like these:
3. Bullet Journal Highlighters and Markers
Can you believe it’s this easy to make glitter in your bullet journal – just use these special markers?!
These highlighters are extremely popular for bullet journaling. They come in a ton of colors, too!
Another type of highlighter that’s also super popular with bullet journal-ers are these:
If you want to get really fancy with your bullet journal design, check these out.
They’re not cheap, but they ARE the best. Click here to check the price.
4. Rulers and Stencils for Bullet Journals
This is a great metal ruler you can use to create straight lines in your bullet journal:
I’m also loving this set of TWENTY bullet journal stencils!
For making circles, I recommend this stencil which is perfect for making many sizes of circles for a bullet journal:
5. Washi Tapes and Stickers For Bullet Journals
Washi tapes are basically just little rolls of masking tape with cute designs and patterns. They’re used for all kinds of crafts – and decorating bullet journals!
I love this set of washi tapes:
If you check out bullet journals on Instagram or Pinterest, you’ve probably also seen a lot of cute bullet journal layouts with glitter washi tapes like these:
This solid color glitter washi tape is great for making borders or adding other design elements to your bullet journal. I’ve seen some really pretty minimalist bullet journals that use it, also!
You can keep your washi tapes organized (and make them easier to cut) with these washi tape dispensers:
6. Bullet Journal Clips and Accessories
How friggin’ cute are these rose gold paper clips? And they come in their own little box to make your desk look chic.
These gold wire clips shown below are also a really popular style:
7. Organizing Bullet Journal Supplies
Once you get all your bullet journal supplies (and you’ll probably get a LOT of them!) you’ll want to keep them organized.
The best organizer I’ve found, by far, for bullet journal supplies is this one.
Yep, it’s the perfect way to organize all your bullet journaling supplies – beautifully!
But I know it might seem a little unjustified to spare quite that big a chunk of change right away if you’re just starting out.
So here’s another much more affordable option you can go with to organizer your bullet journal supplies.
This little caddy would be another great solution to keep your bullet journal pens and markers organized:
That’s all for now, bujo pals! I’ll be updating this page in the future as I learn of more great bullet journal supplies.
Miscellaneous Planner/Journal Supplies
Stamps – Alphabet stamps can be used to add an element of typography to your journal.
Watercolor – If you like watercolor painting, it can add a nice flair to your pages.
DIY stickers – you can make your own “stickers” to cut and paste into your bullet journal by finding or creating digital images and printing them onto paper.
Post it notes and tabs – A pack of sticky tabs is super useful to create bookmarks on your journal pages, or to create a recipe bank.
Clips – Wire binder clips and classic bulldog clips
Erasers – When creating layouts in a journal, it’s a best practice to mark out your design in pencil first, then use ink. I recommend at least a block eraser like this one, which is non-marking and perfect for most journal papers. A stick eraser like this is also super useful for making more detailed erasing.
Correction tape – Many journal enthusiasts swear by this stuff. If you make a mistake using pen, you can just apply some correction tape and cover it up. It comes in very narrow strips that you can use to correct even the tiniest errors.
Paper cutter – Paper cutters with sliding blades are ideal for cutting straight paper edges. They come in many sizes, but for journaling, a small one like this is fine.
Xacto knife – A razor-sharp x-acto knife is useful for cutting washi tapes with greater precision. You can tape them to a cutting mat and cut them directly there.
Cutting mat – If using an xacto knife, a cutting mat is necessary to protect your table top.
Scissors – A good sharp pair of scissors that is only used for paper.
See my other post about great bullet journal gift ideas!