Studio Monday with Nina-Marie: Four Ways to Make A Planner Work For You!


Hello crafty friends, it’s Nina-Marie here wishing you a very happy Monday! With the new year now here, it’s time to start working on your plans for 2017!

Planners are a very useful tool in helping achieve your 2017 goals, make your creative plans happen and keep your daily agenda on track. For me, my planner is indispensable; I use it daily for keeping track of my work and blog schedules.

studio monday with nina-marie-01

We all use our planners differently; some of us decorate them, use them as agendas, journals, inspiration books, or even as memory keepers. In today’s video, I will be sharing four different tips for making use of your planner… and make it work best for you!



At Simon Says Stamp we carry many different brands of planners, including the Me & My Big Ideas Happy Planners, Simple Stories Carpe Diem, Webster’s Pages Color Crush and Jillibean Soup A Day In the Life. Most of these are fully customizable and the coordinating products from many of these planners are interchangeable between each other. This gives you even more customization options!

As an example, I created a planner for one of my friends recently using the Jillibean Soup A Day In the Life planner. I filled it with inserts from both Jillibean Soup’s Day 2 Day planner page inserts and the Carpe Diem planner inserts, lined paper and page dividers.



I find it very helpful to keep my planner organized; not only the planner itself, but also my planner supplies. I love using zipper pouches to keep my planner essentials neatly stored and at hand so that they are ready when I need them. This saves me tons of time in having to search for something.

There are a variety of these zipper pouches available, but some of my favorites are from Jillibean Soup, Me & My Big Ideas and Prima. Essential supplies I have on hand in my pouches are: washi tapes, sticky notes, pens, stickers, postage stamps, return address labels and anything else I find I need to slip inside.



For those that love to decorate their planners, there are a plethora of options to choose from! I think stamps are a perfect option for decorating your planner because they can be customized completely by changing up ink colors, masking, etc. I personally am not a huge planner-decorator. It doesn’t fit my personality and lifestyle all that much. However, I do like adding stickers, quotes and sayings, and little inspirational bits and pieces to my planner pages and pockets. While I don’t personally decorate my planner as much as others do, I think it is a beautiful art form and is inspiring for me to see how others decorate their planners.


For those of you planning on decorating your planner, I recommend selecting items that fit your personality; and don’t feel like the planner has to coordinate either! I think the more mixy-matchy the planner pages are, the more exciting and reflective they are of your life and creativity. If you need a bit of a kick start in selecting decorative elements for your planner, you’ll want to check these out:


This could arguably be one of the most important aspects of your planner! Because your planner is very much a part of your daily life, you want it to be filled with things that inspire, uplift, encourage and overall make you happy! Just like your home is filled with things that you enjoy and love, and friends support and encourage you in different aspects of your life, a planner should be filled with these same things; elements that make you smile and encouraging words that push you forward into the day.


For me, I love to tuck inspirational quotes that I print online, or write down encouraging words I heard recently into the pages of my planner. I also enjoy making things like bookmarks that have uplifting sentiments on them to mark my place. Having sentiment stamp sets that include quotes or sayings on them is a great idea for your planner, especially if you are like me and enjoy having inspiring words around you!


And remember: inspiration doesn’t have to be just words either! I also love to save printed images, photos, postcards, ads from a magazine, etc. in a zipper pouch or pinned to a page in my planner, which I can reference when I am in a creative rut. Whatever it is that you find inspirational, you should try incorporating these elements into your planner! Planners might be a collection of dates, to-do’s, goals and appointments, but they can be made more fun by sprinkling more of ourselves in between the pages of our daily life!

I hope the video below and today’s post gives you some creative ideas and mojo to get your 2017 planner started off on the right track! Thanks so much for visiting me today and have a very happy Monday!






Did you know we have a Plan On It product category that features Simon Exclusives that are perfect for your planner needs?? You’ll want to check that out HERE! And remember we have a Plan On It gallery where you can find inspiration using Plan On It products, as well as upload your own projects using our Plan On It exclusives! You can find the Plan On It gallery HERE.


And one last thing before you go… a Blog Candy Alert!! Follow our blog via email and comment on this post for a chance to win grab bags and blog candy! Remember to tag your awesome projects with #simonsaysstamp on social media so we can see what you are creating!
  1. Thank you for sharing your ideas for planners. You have inspired me to try it and to have a friend try it too!

  2. Wonderful ways for planners. Have seen some creative decorative planners. I made my own planner pages that I bought files from an individual to use. I also bought a set of planner stamps.
    “Sunshine HoneyBee”

  3. Great tips Nina-Marie. I worked on the first six months of my planner yesterday while watching football. So much fun!

  4. I have never used a planner but I love, love, love the tiny stamp sets. I use them to make backgrounds for my cards.

  5. Since ‘get organized’ is one of my goals for 2017, this post is especially timely…and inspiring! Thank you!

  6. I have a planner that I’ve done little more than write down appointments in, but this post is great motivation to make it a fun way to organize my days. Great job!

  7. One of my goals is to get myself more organized and decorate my planner a little this year. Thanks for all of the ideas!

  8. I am a big planner and have similar planning books to help me st goals and keep track of events that happening. But I don;t usually decorate them. While really a cute idea and fun I usually don’t have the time (or take the time) to decorate them. Cute ideas though! Happy New Year!

  9. The planners are such a creative outlet for some people. I keep a small thin undecorated planner in my purse with appointments that I update on the kitchen calendar. I decorate everywhere else but there. I can get so distracted by the shiny things I’d miss an appointment!

  10. One of my favorite posts! I wish there were more planner posts for us planner junkies!!! Awesome ideas! Thanks!

  11. Great post, Nina-Marie! It’s quite obvious you’re a natural planner and very organized. Thanks for all the great tips!

  12. I think your planners are things of beauty. For 40 years I had to plan, now I only plan for my next vacation. Being retired I am a true free spirit. I love your work Nina and thank you for your inspiration!

  13. Such cute planner items! I really like those penguin and panda planner stamps especially!! Thanks for all the ideas!

  14. Love the idea of planners, but I know myself. I would start off all gung-ho and in less than 2 weeks it would be sitting under a pile of other projects and then it would end up as a catch all for lists of all sorts. :)

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