Sharing my April Bullet Journal Setup 2023. Marking the beginning of Spring (in Canada), I thought it would be fun to use plants as my theme. The second reason I chose plants is because I already had drawn images for it. There is currently a big movement in the illustration/surface pattern design world to reassess and reuse your older work. I will be doing this for one of my patterns, but I thought, why not for this journal layout. I had a different theme planned but I wasn’t really feeling the theme so I scrolled through my iPad and decided to go with the plants. Over on YouTube, I share a video of my setup too, that you can check out. My cat, Millie, is ultimately the star but there is a journal in the background!
This month, I am using the Acrylograph paint pens primarily and the stickers I created. These are available for digital download for my email subscribers for free (for a limited time), so make sure to grab them while you can. But, let’s get into it!
April Bullet Journal Setup 2023 Supplies
- Archer and Olive B5 Bullet Journal (NML10 for 10% off- Affiliate link)
- Archer and Olive Acrylograph Paint Pens (NML10 for 10% off- Affiliate link)
- The Pigeon Letters Studio Mono Drawing Pens in size 07 and 05 (Affiliate link)
- Archer and Olive Watercolor Paint (NML10 for 10% off- Affiliate link)
- Natasha Miller Letters Washi Basics in Black
- Natasha Miller Letters Calendar Stamp Set
- Habit Tracker stickers (my own – free for email subscribers for a limited time)
- Plant stickers (my own – free for email subscribers for a limited time)
- Versafine Pigment Ink for Fine Details in Onyx
April Bullet Journal Setup
Bullet journaling is a method of personal organization that combines to-do lists, reminders, notes, and other information in a customizable notebook. It was created by designer Ryder Carroll and emphasizes rapid logging, or the use of short-form bullet points to quickly jot down tasks, events, and ideas. But the best part of bullet journaling is the ability to use it how you want. I fall into the creative bullet journal category, using all kinds of fun supplies and colours to plan in my journal.
This month, I actually kept it simple when it comes to supplies, relying primarily on the Archer and Olive Acrylograph Paint Pens. I like them because of the variety of colour options, as well as the thin tip for details. But they can be difficult to use and they definitely take some getting used to. I also rely on the stickers I create every month. These are available for free download for my email subscribers. I will be moving them to my shop soon after, so you always have the option to buy. Using some washi to complete some of my layouts, I am all set for April!
Every month, I include a cover page and a handlettered page as well. I like to practice my lettering and quote pages are a great way to practice. These quote pages are sent out in my email newsletter every month so you can grab a copy of it if you like it. As a special bonus for this month’s newsletter (April 2023), I am including a copy of the dashboard as well! It’s all digital so you can use it right away, especially if you’re stuck or have limited time for your setup.
I like to have colourful and fun cover pages since I use creative journaling as an outlet. I can get stuck staring at a screen all day, so having the freedom to create on paper is an escape for me. It’s me time that I set aside to create and I love it. For my April Bullet Journal setup this year, I combine watercolours and paint pens. Paint pens are so great since they are opaque and will cover up anything underneath them. My journal page managed to hold up well to all the paint too so I was relived about that! If you are wanting to layer paint, definitely use a thicker journal page to make sure that you don’t ruin your notebook.
The calendar page went from being never used to being my lifeline! As a mom with older kiddos in activities, I really struggle keeping track of who needs to be where and when (and they are only getting started!). So seeing everything laid out in a calendar helps me commit to memory where we need to be and when. I still use google calendar and set alarms and reminders, but seeing the event on paper, in my handwriting, helps my memory.We are switching from winter activity schedule to spring activity schedule so this page is cruciall to my ability to be on time!
Just because it’s my most functional page, doesn’t mean it can’t be pretty! I hand lettered the month with the paint pens, as well as the days of the week, and the to-do heading. I then filled the white space with stickers which made the setup super quick and easy to finish.
Every month, I include a notes page. Sometimes I use all of it, sometimes it goes unused. It really depends on how busy I am at work. I have journals to scribble notes in and tend to stick with those, but I like the option of having the notes page “just in case”. This is a super simple layout with just a heading, and a sticker. This allows it to fit the overall theme, but keeps it functional with lots of space to write.
Habit Tracker Page
March 2023 saw the return of the habit tracker for me. Did I use it? No. Was the intention there? Yes! So much so, that I created a habit tracker page for my April bullet journal setup 2023 too. I used stickers of a tracker I created from when i first started bullet journaling. It’s so fun to use and so much easier to use the stickers than to draw out every single square. My go-tos for habit trackers are definitely stamps, stickers, and stencils!
The stickers I use this month are in the From Blank to Brilliant Library for free limited download for email subscribers. So grab those while you can!
When setting up your bullet journal, you can create horizontal or vertical setups. My favourite is a horizontal setup. This means that the boxes are wide across the page, but shorter down the page. This month, I used the same layout for April as I did for March. I first used this layout in February 2022 and loved it. But the variation I am using now is a bit more simple than I used last February. but that’s the fun in bullet journaling. You crate what you want, how you want it.
I kept it pretty simple and minimalist, using colour specifically for the headings and days. The option to go back and add stickers is always there, but I do tend to opt for functionality in my weeklies than decorative planning. (I have baskets and baskets of stickers to prove this!)
And that is my April bullet journal 2023 setup in a nutshell! I always go into the month with the best intention to use my journal for the month. Sometimes I do, sometimes I don’t. The biggest take away is to keep going. If it makes you happy, and/or serves a purpose, turn the page and try again. A lot of times, we want our journals to be perfect and then we’re disappointed and upset when it isn’t. This is going to sound harsh but lower your expectations. Lower your expectations and be kind to yourself. Journaling and bullet journaling is about you and who you are, not who you want to be.
And while I love having a pretty journal, I am also practical – using stickers instead of hand drawing everything. This is why I like to share my stickers, and cover pages, and bonus freebies here and there. It’s not “cheating” but practical. So use those stencils, and templates and stickers, draw and/or letter what you want. Just have fun with it.
I hope you enjoyed today’s post and video. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to let me know. If you choose to recreate this layout, please tag me so that I can share your work. You can find me on Instagram @natashamillerletters.