I have heard so much about the Erin Condren Life Planner that I just had to try one out myself. I was so excited to receive it through the post this week. Ever since making the order, I eagerly awaited the email to confirm it had been dispatched (which came a couple of days earlier than the website had suggested it would be). When this came, I tracked the package obsessively until the moment it arrived at my doorstep. I picked the cheapest shipping option and it was extremely fast. It arrived in the UK 3 days after it was dispatched from the US.
The reason I ordered one…
…was to help me manage my blog. My set up so far has been a series of notebooks of various sizes and shapes, bursting with hastily scribbled notes about blog posts, and messy to-do lists. Post-it notes with half-formed ideas are stuck between various pages. Nothing is in any order and it made setting a blogging schedule, keeping track of ideas, and actually getting around to doing anything on my to-do list quite difficult. I believe in the benefits of being organised and clutter-free in general, yet this part of my life has been out of control and making it harder to reach my blogging goals. I didn’t have anything big enough to hold all aspects of my daily blogging life together, and made the decision to order the Erin Condren Life Planner after a little deliberation.
First Impressions Count
It arrived beautifully packaged, wrapped in tissue paper and packed in a pink floral box. The planner itself is glossy, vibrant and weighty. Personally I like the size and weight of it. It feels very substantial and I love the huge spiral binder. There are options to personalise your planner on the site. Faced with so many options for colours and patterns was a little overwhelming. After a bit of chopping and changing I went for a simple black and gold stripe. In person the gold is a mustardy yellow, still very pretty. I like the bumblebee effect on the planner as it’s quite distinctive, plus I can spot it a mile away. My name was added to the front, since it is to help me manage my blog which of course shares my name.
I went for the vertical weekly layout rather than the horizontal, and I ordered the full calendar year of 2016 plus paid $5 extra to have the remaining months of 2015, as I want to start using it straight away.
The planner is so cute, with lots of illustrations throughout and plenty of inspirational quotes.
The back of each month has a notes section, and there is also a separate Notes divider at the back. The note paper is a mix of lined, plain and gridded/graph paper. Each page is different and has its own design.
Following on from the Notes section are four sheets of stickers to start you off. These are to mark birthdays, hair appointments, mani/pedi appointments, holidays, and anything else you like as there are also blank ones you can use. Many people set up their own colour codes for these. I am not really one to get too sticker-happy so I didn’t order any extra sticker sheets with the planner. I think these will be sufficient for me for now, until I get to grips with how I want to flag things up in my planner. As mentioned, it is primarily for my blog and not generally for the rest of my life, but it could certainly evolve to help me in other areas in the future.
In The Back
At the very back of the Erin Condren Life Planner are a couple of nice features. The double sided folder allows you to store small notebooks and papers. You just slide them in. Inside one side of the folder is a gorgeous little booklet call the Perpetual Calendar and Contacts. It has a page for each month, and you can store birthdays, anniversaries and other important dates in it. You can then transfer these between planners year after year so you never forget them. The booklet also has sections for important contacts, and important passwords. You can list the name of the website, your username and your password.
These are things I constantly struggle to remember so I love this little idea. Important holidays and dates are listed at the back too (mainly US holidays of course).
The clear plastic wallet in the back is a fantastic idea. It came stuffed with a few little extras: some compliment cards to hand out, referral cards to hand out to give people $10 off their order if you insert your code, a sample sheet of the do-it-all-dots, and a sample coil clip which can be used to clip things like photos, tickets and invitations into the planner itself.
The planner also comes with a clear plastic bookmark. You can see this in the very first photo at the top. This clips in and out of the planner so you can move it around. It also doubles as a ruler and allows you to draw neat lines in the planner.
I ordered a handful of extras to go with the planner. These were the Pen Holder, the Snap In Dashboard To-Do List and gold Elastic Bands to hold it together. The Dashboard To-Do list is a removable double sided panel. It can be written on, wiped off and rewritten on. It’s lined on one side and patterned on the other. I was really pleased to see this as an accessory option. My blogging to-do list is enormous, and is added to constantly. I love that I can wipe it clean and add something new, and clip it on to each week so it moves with me. The pen holder is of course a great idea, as are the elastic bands.
A set of gift tag stickers is a nice added extra.
I’m pleased with my Erin Condren Life Planner and have already started filling it up with notes, stickers, blog post schedules and lists. I am so happy to have a planner which can cover most of my needs. I love the addition of a plastic wallet at the back. It means I don’t lose anything small, and the option to clip important items into the planner itself. The ONLY thing I would have liked are more note pages at the back. I tend to keep long lists of blog post ideas. Only thirteen sides of notepaper are included. However, it would be easy to find a notebook thin enough to slide into the folder at the back.
At the standard price of $50 (around £32.50 at the time I write) this is expensive for what is essentially a week-to-view diary. It is going to last me 16 months however. Broken down I don’t think the cost is that high at just over $3 per month (about £2). I love the additions and unique extras which make it extremely convenient to use, and easy to get organised. They make using the planner a pleasure. I already have my eye on some of the other accessories such as the Stylized Sticky Notes. The Erin Condren Life Planner comes highly recommended, whether you want to use it to help you plan your blog or any other aspect of your life.
ETA: I’ve since written an update post on my thoughts on the Erin Condren Life Planner after using it for a while. You can view that post here.
If you are thinking of making an order, you can use my referral link here which will get you $10 off your purchase.
Have you tried anything from Erin Condren before? If you have a blog, have you found a good way to manage it?
I purchased the Life Planner myself and, as always, words and opinions are my own. My referral link in the text above would also earn me a small credit to spend on the Erin Condren site. For more information on affiliate links please read my full disclosure here.
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