There might be a lot of expensive supplies out there but bullet journaling doesn’t have to be pricey. The point of the system is to make it work for you and all you technically need is a notebook and a pen to start your own. But for a lot of us the artistic element in the bullet journal is really important and you might need a few supplies to help you truly express yourself in your journal. In this post I’ll show you my favourite budget bullet journal supplies that are still great quality.
The notebook is the one thing that you should consider spending more on. If your notebook is cheap and the paper quality bad then your pens won’t write as well. However if you have good quality paper you can get away with using cheaper pens. The expensive option for many people is the Leuchtturm1917. Our budget choice, although it’s still a great quality bullet journal, is this Stationery Island option. They come in a range of colours and sell for only £9.99. The paper quality is still good at 120gsm and they have great reviews on Amazon. Get it here.
But if you’re still struggling for budget and aren’t sure if Bullet Journaling is for you yet then have a look at these gorgeous Travelers Notebook inserts from Chelsea Paper Co. They’re thinner and not as durable as a hardcover journal but they’re still great quality and a good way to test out how Bullet Journaling will work for you. I also love that you can choose different sizes and they have a great choice of covers. The A5 dotted version is £5.99 and you can see the whole range here.
A Black Pen
The next most important thing for your bullet journal is a pen. Of course you can definitely use a biro or whatever pen you want. But many bullet journalists choose to use a black gel pen for the day to day of their bullet journal. Black is a clean colour and gel writes beautifully. My luxury choice is my Pentel Energel but if you’re on a budget the Pilot G2 0.7mm will do a great job for only £2.20.
Of course it’s always going to be cheaper to buy in bulk so if you can afford it I recommend this pack of 12 Black Gel Pens that have great reviews on Amazon and work out at just over 70p each. Get the pack here for £8.59.
Brush Pens and Markers
Brush pens are a really popular tool in the bullet journal community particularly for writing beautiful titles for your spreads. However brush lettering is a skill that has to be learnt and you have to have expensive tools for that right? Wrong. They might be marketed towards kids but Crayola Super Tips are actually a really great pen for the beginner brush letterer! Even AmandaRachLee the popular Bullet Journal Blogger raves about them.
Check out this image below to see what I mean. They’re not the most durable and if you practice brush lettering a lot with the pressure required the tip might suffer but they can still be used as a good quality felt pen. The colours are vibrant and they don’t bleed through the page! You can get a starter pack of 12 from only £2.50! I also often see them at reduced prices in my local supermarket so take a look when you’re next doing your shop!
Fineliners are another staple in the bullet journalists tool box. The two main brands are Stabilo and Staedtler, both great quality but if they aren’t on sale they can be pricey. Keep an eye out in bargain shops like B&M or even W H Smith because I’ve seen some very good deals on fineliners in those places. If you can’t catch them though then you can get this pack from amazon for only £2.89! There are some really good reviews for them that compare the quality to more well known brands but at a big discount!
Washi tape is another really popular tool for bullet journalists. Arguably it’s not essential and sometimes even when I use it I don’t know if it always adds a lot to my spreads. But it does have practical uses like marking important pages which I’ve used a few times in my journal. Check out my blog post that shows you how to use Washi Tape in your Bullet Journal. One of the best ways to get your hands on washi tape for a big discount is to buy samples.
I rarely use the same washi tape so much that I run out of a whole roll. Samples are a much more economical way to get your hands on washi tape you love! Basically, someone will just take some tape off their roll and transfer it onto something else like a tab or a lolly stick. This means that you can get a bigger range of designs for a low price. This Etsy shop has a really good selection of washi samples that are only a couple of pounds at the most. Or if you really want to go into an Etsy washi hole check out my post on the Best Washi Etsy Stores.
Bonus: Journal Starter Kit
I also stumbled this great value bumper back of journal supplies available on Amazon which includes 24 Dual Tip Art Markers with a fineliner and Brush tip as well as a set of 20 journal stencils to help you with your set up. I’ve tried these pens before and although they’re not the most amazing quality they do the job and are a great option if you want to test out the hobby. Get it here for only £11.99.