Sunday, March 2, 2014

Martha Stewart 2014 Planner

*2015 update: Unfortunately the Martha Stewart planner line has discontinued this year. You can check out the planner I am using in 2015 and also use a $10 off coupon provided in the blog post! Thanks for dropping by!

martha stewart planner

So I upgraded to a Martha Stewart disc bound planner for 2014 from a spiral bound BlueSky planner from Target. After using it for 2 months, I thought I'd share how I feel about the planner, because when I was searching for detailed information about this planner before I bought it, I couldn't find any! 

martha stewart planner

The color, first of all, is just gorgeous. It's the thing that drew me into the planner in the first place. Being a Martha Stewart product, you can be sure that apart from the color, it's also a sturdy, quality product. 

martha stewart planner goals

The pockets on the left side are nice sizes. They work great for business cards, receipts and letters you may need to look into. I keep my son's doctor appointment information in it, along with his immunization form. 


On the right side, I added my own 2014 goals list. It helps me stay focused. I wanted to stray from the same old checklist style and do something a bit more unique. Also, since this is the first page, it's easy for it to get torn over the span of one year. I therefore reinforced the side of the paper with washi tape.

(The notepad paper is from Erin Condren)
washi tape

I needed to punch holes for the disc bound planner and also cut out strips of paper from the edge for it to be inserted. The whole point of the disc bound system is that you can take the pages out and insert them back in within a few seconds. There's no need to open any rings of a binder and no need to tear out pages like in a spiral bound notebook. It's very easy to personalize.



Here are the tools I used to make my own inserts. You can also by a hole puncher which is made for punching 8 holes in one go along with the strip at the edge cut off, but it costs $50 and this costs a small fraction of that price. 


Fun side note: see the purple pair of scissors? I bought them when I started first grade and have used them every year throughout my school life, then in university, then after marriage, and still using them regularly after becoming a mom! The stories those scissors could tell... :)


I added these tabs to my planner. I love the look of it! The can be found on Amazon or at the Container Store. Apart from the 12 months, it also includes tabs such as Notes, To Do, Travel, Contacts a few more.


Martha Stewart's 2014 inserts, which I am using this year, have some great info pages in the beginning of the planner. They include Personal Reference, Holidays, 4-Year Reference, Special Dates (that you can add), Clothing Sizes and Conversions. 


The 4-Year Reference page is great for tracking vacations and planning ones in the future. 


Here's a look at my month-at-a-glance from January. I like how on the right hand side there is space for extra notes and you can also refer to the last month and next month easily.




Yes. I color code. But you knew I'd do that.



Now for my biggest problem with the Martha Stewart planner. Her lovely tips.

I'm the kind of person who uses the month at a glance section more than the daily section. It's just easier to refer to a specific day and see what's going on. However, some days don't have that much space to write in because of her long tip of the days. And I need that space!



Really?

I mean, I love Martha Stewart. She is the epitome of creativity. But...I can't go to the farmer's market on a random Monday in June just because it says I have to in the planner and I'd rather write stuff I actually WILL do that day. Sorry Martha :(

Ok. Moving on.


So one fine day I decided to "decorate" my planner pages because it was the in-thing to do. Yeah, as you can see, not for me. It was fun while it lasted, but I'm going to stick to just writing in different colors for different tasks rather than "drawing".




One thing I love about the planner is that Martha gave 2 extra boxes on the bottom which are blank and you can add anything you want in them. They could be fitness related, goal related, work related...anything really. I made one of the boxes for Meal Planning. Always easier to know in advance what you're cooking rather than on the day itself. And in the second box I write "Highlights". I want to write down a positive memory I have of the day so that I can look back some day and remember all the blessings. It's great because at the end of the day it makes you look on the bright side of the day. 




Finally, the planner provided a large pocket which was removable. I added a couple of post it notes and I picture of my favorite little man.

So, the verdict? I enjoyed trying out a new system, that being the disc bound system. It makes it easy to move the pages around. The cover is very durable and just a stunning color.

The inserts are ok. They get the job done. For month at a glance I would prefer no tips, just a blank calendar and some extra space on the side to write notes, which is provided here. As for the daily pages, I personally don't really need a separate section for Morning, Afternoon and Evening, but I know some people do.

If I had a second chance, I would use this beautiful cover and change the inserts inside.  Some of the ones I love are I Heart Organizing'sA Bowl Full of Lemon's and Erin Condren's. However, I was afraid of going through the hassle of printing the first two planners double sided, then punching holes in all of them. And Erin Condren is spiral bound so I'd have to trim the edges and punch holes in them too. Too much work. With a toddler. Not happening.

And so I stuck with Martha Stewart's 2014 planner.

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61 comments :

  1. You can get the portable levenger punch for your discbound. Its $19 from levenger.com and they do free shipping for their punches.
    I love the discbounds. They are so flexible.

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    1. Thanks for the tip! Since I got the Martha Stewart ready-made inserts, I think I won't be needing to use a levenger punch. But if I printed my own planner I would definitely have bought it!

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  2. I use the Martha Stewart planner too and I love it. I also hate the tips on the monthly page though.

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  3. Gorgeous! I have turned to a discbound planner this year, too! I'm using the arc inserts!

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    1. Thank you! Wonder how the Arc inserts are compared to the MS ones! Will have to check it out!

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  4. What a lovely planner. Thanks for sharing your experience with it. I currently use a planner from Typo as we don't have a lot of Martha Stewart products available in South Africa x
    x Nadia http://www.nadiavdmescht.co.za/

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    1. I will have to check out the Typo planner, sounds interesting! Will check out your blog! =) Thanks for the comment!

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  5. I like that planner too. I was holding off as I would like to add pages without the added expense of refills. Thanks for the hole punch idea.

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    1. Glad the post was of help to you! Enjoy the planner! =)

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  6. Awesome craft! I admit, I’ll hesitate to use that planner if I own it. Hehe! Kidding aside, it’s nice to know that you have one beautiful planner to make sure you can meet deadlines, arrange your schedules and remember payments cutoffs. I hope you’ll be able to organize different data here for the next months. Thanks for the share, by the way. :)

    Ruby Badcoe

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    1. Thanks so much for dropping by! Planners make a world of a difference in becoming more productive :)

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  7. Your posts are so helpful
    lol I thought i was the only one who wished the erin condren came with a cover like the filofax or Martha stewart onewith business card pockets and the like.

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    1. Thanks for your comment Haajer! Do you own the Erin Condren planner?

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    2. Yes, and I stopped using it, because it didn't fit my fitness and nutrition tracking needs either, I needed a water tracker per day (you know those eight cute little bubbles or water drops? which we can tick off ), that & an exercise log, a proper meal log/planning page per week.
      I have instead downloaded printables from CleanMama on etsy for like $10.

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    3. I'm so sorry for not replying earlier! It's so sad that Erin Condren planners are so beautiful but not too functional. You know, you can get stamps for the water tracker... But they come with a set of other not so useful stamps.

      It is very rare to find other desis (you ARE desi right?) Interested in these kinds of things. I'm sure if we met in person we'd be really close friends :)

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  8. How do you use the hole puncher?? I know that sounds like a stupid question but how does the placement work?
    I have an Erin Condren because I LOVE the design but I like this idea a lot better. I'm just going to take out what I need from hers.

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    1. Hi! That's a great plan. What I do is just measure where exactly I need to punch the holes by looking at the MS Planner and make markings with a pencil. After that I punch the holes one by one. In your case though I'd recommend getting the Levenger punch which will be much faster! Hope that helps!

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  9. What size is the planner?

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    1. It's called a Junior size, which is an A5

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  10. The ARC system by Staples works with the Martha Stewart Disc bound. I actually use the ARC calendar inserts and pockets. (No Martha tips!)

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    1. Thanks for the comment, I will check it out for next year!

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  11. Super cute!! Thanks for the suggestions!

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  12. Where did you get your set of colorful sticky flag things? I love them! (Starting grad school soon so trying to get organized and prepared beforehand :) )
    Thanks!

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    1. Hi, thanks so much for dropping by! I really miss being in university! You should check out my post on how to take effective notes in class to be better prepared. It's called Note Taking Tips and Strategies if I remember correctly!

      I got the flags from Amazon.com . They are called Semikolon Sticky Page Markers. Hope that helps! :)

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    2. this is exactly the question i was going to ask. I am a planner ADDICT and I switched to the disc bound this year- STILL SEARCHING for the calendar inserts. Will check out all links here. Thank you for covering all these.

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  13. I have the exact same binder and love it except for: the Martha discs seem to "stick" for me. I think I'm going to try the Arc rings. I've heard they're better. Now, here's my main question. I had the Martha academic calendar and it runs out at the end of them month. I haven't been to a Staples store but on their website there's only 1 discbound calendar (which goes through 2015 so that's smart money wise) but it's out of stock. I also looked on Amazon and no luck. I don't care if it's academic year...that was just the best way to go money wise when I got it. Any thoughts on what you've found that you like best?

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    1. Hi, thanks for your comment! Switching to Arc rings is definitely a good option. I've read numerous good reviews on them.

      As for the Martha Stewart calendar, I would check out the store and if it's not there I'd order it at the front desk. For me that would be easiest because it's already pre-punched. Another option that's already punched is the Arc inserts. They don't have tips on the monthly page either so that's a bonus! There are hundreds of other calendars online that you can purchase and print out, then punch, but that's a lot of colored ink and a lot of time would be needed. I'm not sure if this helps, but I'd definitely visit Staples for a better idea and look at both MS and Arc inserts!

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  14. Í love your pens. What kind are they?

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    1. Hi! I love them too and would highly recommend them! They are called Foray Stylemark. I believe I got them from Staples. Thanks for dropping by!

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  15. I love mine too! However, I have been searching for 2015 calendar refills without success. Have you found it anywhere or something compatible?

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    1. Wow I had replied to your question a few days ago and the comment disappeared! No I was not able to find any Martha Stewart inserts for 2015 but I know Arc inserts are compatible! Hope that helps!

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    2. I cannot find Martha Stewart 2015 Calendar inserts nor can I find arc inserts. Does anyone have a suggestion of where I can find something?

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  16. I love the way you customized this! I need to get more creative. A disc bound planner sounds like it might fit me more than what I've got so I can customize things.

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    1. Thanks for dropping by and leaving a comment! Discbound planners are tons of fun and are functional. However I'll be switching to Erin Condren in 2015 to see how that is. What planner do you use?

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  17. where can I get the blue planner? looked at staples, not offered online, is it the 6 1/2x9 size? that's what size I am looking for, to replace my coach planner. My whole office is this color and I cant find the planner help!

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    1. Hi, this post was from early 2014. Unfortunately this planner has been discontinued for 2015 :(. I would love to see your office! Mint is my favorite color!

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  18. After trying many other options over the years, I have been using this planner for 2 years and absolutely love it. I like having a month view as well as a week view, the size and color, the discbound technology. I have been trying to find insert for 2015 and find here that it is discontinued. So very disappointed. I am looking at the ARC refills, but only see month view. Do you know if they typically have a week view and just might be not available yet for 2015?

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    1. I purchased 2015 week view inserts in the junior size at staples a couple weeks ago.

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  19. That's a very colourful planner, I would definitely be encouraged to keep updating this!

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    1. Thank you! I find it really relaxing to decorate it :)

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  20. Thanks for the tour! You are right its hard to find info. I'm kind of confused..do you stick the papers in or do they clip in the the old school 3 ring binders? I'd worry about pages coming out? Sorry, I know this post is old! Hope you see it!

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    1. Hi Amber! Thanks for leaving a comment! The idea of a disc bound planner is that you can add papers in without having to open them like you would a 3 ring binder. You just press the papers in from the side and they don't fall out. Maybe you could try to search for a YouTube video on disc bound planners for a better idea! Hope that helps!

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  21. What pens do you use? I'm always looking for planner pens that dont bleed

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    1. Hi! They are Foray Stylemark from Office Depot!

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  22. Does anyone know where I can purchase a Martha Stewart planner. I have even looked for used ones on ebay. Staples has been out forever.

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    1. Hi! Unfortunately the Martha Stewart Planner has discontinued. I wrote a blog post today about the Erin Condren Life Planner, maybe you can check that out!

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  23. Does anyone know where I can purchase a Martha Stewart planner. I have even looked for used ones on ebay. Staples has been out forever.

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  24. Wow - my Fiancee would love this! Where can I get one?!

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    1. Hi Nick! Unfortunately the Martha Stewart planner line has discontinued. You could check out how I am personalizing my Erin Condren planner this year and also use the $10 off coupon in my blog post! Here's the link:

      http://simply-in-control.blogspot.com/2015/01/honest-erin-condren-planner-review-and.html

      Let me know if you get it for her and her reaction!

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  25. Good Afternoon!

    I hope I'm not being too forward but was wondering if there was any way that you'd want to sell this notebook? I have been searching for it since last year & have had no luck since they discontinued it. If you were willing to part with it, I would be extremely interested! Please contact me at labellavidadesign@gmail.com

    Thank you!

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    1. Hi Isabella!

      Unfortunately I'm not looking to sell this notebook. I keep all of my planners and this one is one of my favorites! I'm sorry you are not able to find out elsewhere. Maybe you can check out different brands?

      Delete
    2. Hi Isabella!

      Unfortunately I'm not looking to sell this notebook. I keep all of my planners and this one is one of my favorites! I'm sorry you are not able to find out elsewhere. Maybe you can check out different brands?

      Delete
  26. Hello there! Do you recall how much you paid for this? I have a young lady that is trying to sell me one for $50 and she says that it was the price she paid. I feel like that's a bit steep. If she's trying to inflate the price because of demand, I get that but I'd appreciate if she was honest about it.

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    1. Hi! Before the planner got discontinued the price was around $25 or so. Can't remember exact price but around there. After it got discontinued the price spiked up to at least $50 on ebay, off not more. So it all depends on if she bought it before or after discontinuation!

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    2. So do you know if the planner its coming back? I see the link in MS page as well as Staples but no inventory....

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  27. Hello there! Do you recall how much you paid for this? I have a young lady that is trying to sell me one for $50 and she says that it was the price she paid. I feel like that's a bit steep. If she's trying to inflate the price because of demand, I get that but I'd appreciate if she was honest about it.

    ReplyDelete
  28. Excellent blog, Congrats to the Web Master, nice colors and text.
    Thanks for sharing your knowledge. God bless you.

    Cherry Marmalade Recipe

    Great post. Thanks for sharing!!!! Greetings from Venezuela.
    :)

    ReplyDelete

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