Matt Davies

Sept 26, 2023

The Art of Journaling: Choosing the Right Notebook for You

Ready to start a new journal? Take a look at the most popular options here!

Journaling is a time-honored practice that can be both a creative outlet and a powerful tool for personal growth. Whether you're new to journaling or a seasoned pro, one of the most crucial decisions you'll make is selecting the right notebook. In this guide, we'll explore the different types of notebooks, including lined, dot grid, and calendar journals, as well as various page thickness options, to help you find the perfect journaling companion.

1) The Many Faces of Journaling

Let's take a quick look at the different types of notebooks that you can purchase.

Lined Journals

Lined journals are perhaps the most traditional choice for journaling enthusiasts. The neat, evenly spaced lines offer structure, making them ideal for writing long entries, daily reflections, or even poetry. The ruled lines help maintain the neatness of your entries and encourage legible handwriting.

Lined journals are particularly popular among those who want a clear structure for their thoughts. They're perfect for keeping a daily diary or jotting down personal goals and affirmations. The lines provide guidance without being intrusive, making it easier to maintain your journal's aesthetics.

Dot Grid Journals

Dot grid journals have gained immense popularity in recent years, especially among creative journalers, artists, and bullet journal enthusiasts. Instead of lines, dot grid pages feature a subtle grid of evenly spaced dots.

This unobtrusive pattern offers just enough structure to guide your writing and drawing without imposing limitations.Dot grid journals are versatile and encourage creativity. You can use them for traditional journaling, but they're also excellent for sketching, diagramming, and creating personalized planners. The dots can be easily turned into calendars, to-do lists, or habit trackers, making them a favourite among those who like to blend journaling with planning.

Our most popular Dot Grid notebook is this one below, by Yop & Tom.

Dot Grid A5 Journal
closeup of yop and tom pink stars notebook
pink version of the yop and tom dotted grid a5 journal
green and gold version of the Yop and tom dot grid a5 journal
Dot Grid A5 Journal
Dot Grid A5 Journal
Dot Grid A5 Journal
flat lay of 6 a5 dot grid journals by yop and tom on an off white office desk
Dot Grid A5 Journal
Dot Grid A5 Journal
closeup of yop and tom pink stars notebook
pink version of the yop and tom dotted grid a5 journal
green and gold version of the Yop and tom dot grid a5 journal
Dot Grid A5 Journal
Dot Grid A5 Journal
Dot Grid A5 Journal
flat lay of 6 a5 dot grid journals by yop and tom on an off white office desk
Dot Grid A5 Journal

Dot Grid A5 Journal

£19.00
View Details

Calendar Journals

For individuals who prefer a more structured approach to journaling, calendar journals are a fantastic choice. These journals come with pre-printed calendar layouts, typically spanning a year or more. Each page represents a day, week, or month, depending on the design. Calendar journals are perfect for tracking events, appointments, and daily activities.

They're like a combination of a diary and a planner. If you're keen on documenting your daily life, milestones, and achievements, a calendar journal can help you stay organized while maintaining a chronological record of your experiences.

2) Thickness Matters: Page Thickness Options

Thin paper (60-90gsm)

Thin pages, usually in the range of 60-80gsm (grams per square meter), are common in many notebooks. These pages are lightweight and provide a sleek, compact journal. They are ideal for those who prefer a slim, portable journal that's easy to carry around. However, thin pages may not be suitable for everyone. They are more prone to show-through (where ink from one side of the page bleeds through to the other) and can sometimes be too delicate for markers or heavy inking. If you have a heavy hand or plan to use a variety of writing instruments, you might find thin pages less satisfying.

Medium paper (90-120gsm)

Medium-weight pages, typically in the range of 90-120gsm, strike a balance between thickness and portability. They provide more durability than thin pages, making them suitable for a variety of writing instruments, including fountain pens, markers, and gel pens.

These pages are less likely to suffer from show-through, so you can write on both sides without worrying about ink bleeding through. They offer a premium feel without making your journal too bulky, making them a popular choice among journaling enthusiasts.

Thick paper (130gsm and above)

Thick pages, with a weight of 130gsm and above, offer a luxurious journaling experience. These heavyweight pages are perfect for those who want to create art, illustrations, or intricate calligraphy in their journals.

They can handle heavy ink, watercolor, and even collage without warping or bleed-through. Thick, premium pages are the name of the game at Blankspace, check out the Dotgrid branded A5 Journal here.

white dot grid journal on white background
dot grid journal next to apple MacBook on a table with coffee
dot grid notebook on table with a mans hand touching it
the inside of a dot grid notebook showing the days of the week
white dot grid journal on white background
dot grid journal next to apple MacBook on a table with coffee
dot grid notebook on table with a mans hand touching it
the inside of a dot grid notebook showing the days of the week

Dotgrid A5 Journal - Grey

£26.00

Creatives, take on the world! 

This 160gsm journal by Dotgrid is fantastic for jotting down your most creative ideas and experiences, and with 160 gloriously dotted pages you have enough room for every brilliant bit of inspiration that hits you.

Features 

1. Dot Grid Format - 5mm grid.
2. 160 pages ivory white pages.
3. Vegan leather cover that opens flat.
4. Hidden, minimalist branding.
5. Elastic closure, pen holder, bookmark and doc pocket all included.
6. Comes complete with gift box.

Check out the whole Dotgrid range here

View Details

Finding Your Perfect Match

When choosing a journal, consider your personal preferences and how you plan to use it. Here are some factors to keep in mind:

· Purpose: Are you journaling for self-reflection, creativity, planning, or a combination of these? Your journal's purpose will influence the type of notebook and page thickness you should select.
· Writing Instruments: Think about the writing instruments you'll use. If you love fountain pens or markers, you might lean towards medium or thick pages. For ballpoint pens or pencils, thin pages could suffice.
· Portability: Consider whether you want to carry your journal with you regularly. If so, a thinner, lightweight journal might be more convenient.
· Creativity: If you enjoy adding artwork, illustrations, or color to your journal, thicker pages can accommodate these creative endeavors beautifully.
· Structure: Decide whether you prefer the structure of lined, dot grid, or calendar layouts, or if you want the freedom of blank pages.

Ultimately, the right journal for you is a matter of personal preference. Some people even switch between different types of journals for different purposes. Experiment, explore, and find the journal that inspires you to write, create, and reflect.In the end, journaling isn't just about the paper; it's about the journey of self-expression and self-discovery. So, pick up that perfect notebook and let your thoughts flow onto its pages, whether they're lined, dotted, or gridded, and whether the pages are thin or thick. Happy journaling!

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