DIY: Washi Tape Reference (with Spiral Bound insert)

If you are a “planner addict” like I am, you probably have TONS of supplies laying around to make your organization picture perfect. One of the greatest tools that I’ve utilized since falling in love with planning is the, oh so famous, washi tape—and boy, do I have a lot of it.

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Finished washi tape reference that I can remove in and out of my planner! Don’t mind my cute owl PJ’s…

First of all, before you I try to describe what a “washi tape reference” is…I want to ask you whether you have been in any of these scenarios:

  • You go on a planner-haul for washi tape and come home to find that you’ve bought the same pattern of tape TWICE!
  • You are meticulously looking through the sticker section and come to find these awesome stickers, but then wonder what washi tape you might combine the stickers with or whether the color pattern actually goes together or not.
  • You finish decorating your planner and then come to find washi tape in the back your drawer that would’ve gone perfectly with your pages…yet, you forgot you had it and it’s too late now 😦

Are you starting to get the idea of its purpose now?

I think a washi tape reference is just a perfect way to organize all your washi tape patterns, so that you can easily identify what you have in your collection without having to pull all the rolls out or cluttering your work space while you dig deep to find the perfect pattern. So of course, here’s a tutorial on how to make one (or at least how I made mine)!

Materials

  • your personal washi tape collection (duh)IMG_1831
  • cardstock (preferably white to showcase the right patterns)
  • scissors
  • 1/8″ hole puncher (I got mine at Michael’s for about $6)
  • your planner
  • paper trimmer (optional…if you’re really good at cutting straight with scissors)
  • sticky tabs

To begin, think about what size you want your reference to be. This is IMG_1833totally up to you and you can make it look however you want. I decided to go with two short columns to show off my collection.

I cut my card stock 9×4″ rectangle. This is where the paper trimmer comes in handy.

*TIP: Remember that you will be displaying your washi tape on this sheet, and you want to try to use as little washi tape as possible to save the rest for your planner! This is why I made my reference fairly thin. 

I also decided to use the scoring blade off my Recollections Signature Paper Trimmer to score a straight line down the middle of my sheet to make two columns.

Next is the fun part: putting your washi tape down. This is super easy after a lot of experience of decorating my planner. I felt like I was going washi tape crazy on one sheet (which I was) and I enjoyed it (I’m so lame. Sorry).

As said before, you can do this however you want. You can tape down in lines. You can scatter them. You can do whatever you want.

I decided that I wanted my washi tape to be viewed easily (and taped down easily). I didn’t want to just place the tape just anywhere, and decided that horizontal lines in two columns were a safe choice:

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I already loved the look of my reference as I finished filling the sheet.

Now, you can totally stop here if you can work with this. You could easily place this in a pocket folder, or just carry it around in your backpack/purse or whatever.

The next few steps are just going to put a spiral tab with slits on it so that you can easily remove the reference in and out of your planner as you please. Please keep in mind this only works with SPIRAL BOUND planners, such as Erin Condren or Plum Paper planners. I learned this method from Belinda Selene’s planner video, “5 AFFORDABLE WAYS TO DECORATE YOUR PLANNER | #PlanningWithBelinda.” Definitely check out her youtube channel—she has GREAT tips!

First, you’ll need to find a guide to make your spiral bound holes. If you have a sort of ruler, book mark, or interchangeable cover that is removable and can be put back on, this will work perfectly. If not, grab your planner and tear out the very last sheet in it (don’t cringe…you won’t even miss the last sheet—specially if it’s just a notes page).

Luckily, even though my planner is custom made (click here to learn more about how I created my own planner from scratch!), my old Erin Condren ruler still fits between the spiral bounds. I simply used the ruler as a guide for mark holes for the spiral insert. Then, I stuck the note tab to the back of my washi reference!

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I held the ruler up to the note tab and then marked the holes with a pencil. Easy peasy.
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Front and back view of the marked note tab stuck to the washi reference sheet.

Then, use your 1/8″ hole puncher to punch out EXACTLY where the marks are on the note tab.

IMG_1844Last but not lease, use your scissors to cut slits in the middle of every hole punch.

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After cutting all the slits, the note tab should be sort of “fringy” (that’s the best word I could think of…).

Now stick it onto your planner and VIOLA, you have a removable washi tape reference for all your planning needs!

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Thanks for reading,

Yin

Did you like this tutorial? Any other advice on how to make this reference even better? Let me know your thoughts and questions in the comments below. Don’t forget to share with your other planner addicts!

Turn Old Journals into Alphabetical Organizers!

With all the time I have this summer, I succumbed to cleaning and organizing bits and pieces of my entire life. This is harder than it looks, but it is a HUGE relief on my end. I am the type of person that can easily be whisked away into the deep dark nights of cleaning and organizing—that’s just me. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, if I could make a solid career out of this, I would.

While cleaning my desk in my old room, I came across a lot of empty journals that I half wrote in/half totally forgot about. In my case, I don’t want to just throw away all that paper…ESPECIALLY when the notebook is too cute! (I will relentlessly buy cute school supplies at Target…even if I have no use for it. Don’t tell me you’ve never done this before).

Tonight, I found a way to make use of these old journals and notebooks without guilt of killing trees and spending dollars: by turning it into an alphabetical organizer. Of course, this organizer can be used for contact phone numbers/addresses, recipes, or in my case, I turned it into a password saver. I saw a password saver at Barnes & Nobles’ today priced at $12.99. The one I made tonight cost essentially nothing but some old desk supplies in my room, and it is MUCH cuter!

Here’s a step by step (with pictures) of how I made my alphabetical password saver:

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Supplies

  • 1 small notebook or journal (gently used or new)
  • 1 pack of rectangle labels OR sticky tabs
  • scissors
  • pen or marker

Step One: Make a fold in the labels at about one-third of the label. If you already have sticky tabs, skip steps 1 and 2!

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It is best to fold them all together at the same time so that all the labels are even and at the same length.

Step Two: Peel off the label, and fold 1/3 of the label back onto itself to make a homemade sticky tab. (It’s easier than it sounds—trust me!)

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This is what the back of the label will look like after it has been folded onto itself. Only half of it will be sticky (to stick on the pages).
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Finished folded label. See how it is able to stick on my finger, yet the other side isn’t sticky at all?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Step Three: Count your pages.

This number depends on how many tabs you need to make, and how many pages you want incorporated into each tab. You’ll need to make sure you have enough pages from the beginning—finding out you don’t have enough is no fun at the end.

I chose to make 27 tabs, one page per tab (one for each letter of the alphabet and one labeled ‘#’ for webpages that begin with a number or symbol). If you want 27 tabs with two pages each, you’ll need (27×2=) 54 pages, etc. It’s easy math, I promise!

Step Four: Start on the last page, and stick a tab at the bottom. Then work your way up!

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You want to start at the bottom of the last page so that it all evens out. If you start at the top in the beginning,  chances are that you won’t finish clean at the bottom when it’s complete. This also makes it easier to see when you should stick on the next tab; once you flip the page, you’re still able to see the last tab’s placement and can adjust the new tab accordingly.

TIP: When you’ve reached the top, start over from the bottom. This continues the same pattern and keeps everything aligned.

Step Five: Stick, flip, stick, flip, repeat.

Stick a tab on. Flip the page. Stick on another just above it. Simple as that! Be careful not to skip any pages—it can be really frustrating to fix! If you want more than 1 page for each tab, make sure to change the number of flips accordingly.

Here is what you should end up with!
Here is what you should end up with!

TIP: It’s always fun to incorporate patterns into your tabs if you’d like. I interchanged tabs between four colors to add a little bit of brightness to my organizer 🙂

Step Six: If you are like me, and the tabs aren’t even enough for you, or even if the tabs are too long for your liking…simply cut with scissors to your taste! If this doesn’t bother you, or if you like the unevenness homemade looking style, by all means, adjust to your comfort level.

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Step Seven: Last but not least, pull out your elementary skills and write your ABC’s!

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The end product!

TIP: You can be as creative with this as you like. I think stamping small letters would be so cute (unfortunately, I did not have stamps available to me at 11pm).

 

I hope you enjoyed this short tutorial on this SUPER SIMPLE alphabetical organizer. You can use it for whatever you find convenient. For example, I think it would work well for a contact list or recipe book (if you want to use it for recipes, you might need a lot more pages per letter).

TIP: If you decide to turn this into a password saver like I did, BE CAREFUL to put it in a SAFE place where no one can get to it! I think it would definitely be a leave at home under your desk type of organizer, rather than one you might carry around with you.

Thanks for reading,

Yin

Did you like this tutorial? How did your organizer turn out? Do you have any more tips and tricks you might like to share? Let me know in the comments, and don’t forget for share!