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The Journal Diaries- The Hobonichi and Midori Planner collection

The Journal Diaries is a new blog segment where we get a sneak peek into the journals, notebooks, organizers, and diaries from people all over the world. Click here for past posts.

Hello my friends! This is Doris, a simple stationery lover. It’s such an honor to do this guest blog invited by a thoughtful blogger Michelle. I love her style very much because she is so creative and makes a lot of fun with bright colors;)

By the way, I am from China and studying in Vancouver, Canada for now. As I said before, I am a stationery lover. The main reason is that I really enjoy recording my life. Basically, I love to use Japanese stationery such as washitapes and stickers and also various notebooks. Today, I will show some of my
notebooks that I usually use and pick some of my favorite goodies to share with you. Hope you will like them;)

Here is what I am using recently. I enjoy using Kanken ‘classic’ backpack and my boyfriend gets a ‘big’ size too. It is very light, durable, and always ready for travelling.  

HOBONICHI journal notebooks are my favorite ones. I got three sizes here in case that someone has questions about size.  The left one with snow print cover is A5, and I used it in 2013. The A5 size only comes with Japanese inserts for now. The middle blue floral print one is A6, you can choose to have a set with Japanese insert or order the cover and the English insert (HOBONICHI Planner) separately. That’s what I’m using for 2014.  The yellow one is called HOBONICHI weeks. It’s skinnier than others and easy to carry to everywhere.

I have ordered PVC protector for A6 and weeks since they would get dirty easily. 

There is timeline on every page in A5. Sometimes I ignore it when I do journaling. I just use stickers and washitapes to decorate the pages to show what I have got these days---some big
news. I really enjoy drawing speech bubbles even though I'm not good at it. :)

Sometimes I like to use the Timeline to help me remember what I did during a certain point of time. 
When I realized the A5 is too large for me to carry outside, I chose A6 instead this year. I still used it for 
recording life events and general thoughts.
And the reason I din not use the timeline is there is just a 12:00 on the English version, which make me feel unnecessary to focus on the point of time. (Next year, I will try A6 Japanese version for sure. After that, I 
would know which size is best for me.) 
HOBONICHI A6 is good for daily journaling. However, if you need a planner, the HOBONICHI weeks would be the best supplementary notebook to pick. Basically, it has month plan in the beginning of each notebook. I normally write down all due dates and important events here. And I use cute bright colored schedule seal to highlight the numbers.  

Then I can do whatever I want on this “weeks on two pages” planner. I love to make ‘to do list’ on the left page and leave free notes on the right one.
Sometimes I use washitapes to make a list of targets.  Whenever I get some meaning sentence that I want to remember, I choose to use sticky notes to jot them down.
Besides of HOBONICHI notebooks, I have two more notebooks with free style. The left one is TN, which is short for Midori Travler’s Notebook (regular size and brown color, ) and the right one is Moleskine (Large size and 2014 dated).

For now, I have put two inserts into my TN. The left one is about my trip and the right one is my memories in Vancouver. I decorated the covers of them with washitapes to make them unique.

This insert is craft paper, but also very easy to use. Normally people choose #003 insert (blank white 
paper), which provides most freedom to use.  

It’s my first time to use Moleskine, which is so famous all around the world. My boyfriend gave it to me as a new-year gift because he thought I might love this special edition. (Yes, I did!) Since it is also dated as HOBONICHI A6, I use this notebook with more freedom. Usually, I have topic for every day such as a movie or a book, and I even start to try some drawing with much courage;) 

Sometimes it is just about a box of candy from daily life. I drew them with watercolor pencils. 

Sometimes just jot down a random thought and make use of washitapes to draw something. 

Sometimes I write little but use many sticky goodies to have a big picture. I really enjoy the process.

In case of that some friends will be interest in those index tab stickers, I’d like to introduce a bit. For HOBONICHI planner, I used Midori mushroom index tab sticker, where are no numbers on them. In order to identify different styles from HOBONICHI, I used chuyu (A Taiwanese brand) index tab stickers on Moleskine, where are month numbers on them.

As I use sticker sheets very often, I have three sticker sorters from Mindwave. I put travelling related stickers into the left one, cute animals related into the middle one, and schedule seal into the right one.

Inside look! It is very user friendly.

And for those sticker flakes, I got a container from Daiso in Vancouver for C$2.

Inside look! Every time I open a sticker pack, I would put all flakes here, sorting by styles such as cute animals, buildings, stamps, etc. And for some kinds of washitapes, it’s better to make them as stickers and 
put them here such as the bottle and flower ones on the right hand side.  

Last, I would like to share what are in my pencil case recently. I have mechanical pencil, ballpoint pen, 
inkpen/gelpen, highlighter, scissorsgluetape, eraser, and small sticker self-pack, etc. 
Something I highly recommend! MT slim washitapes are very easy to mix and macth with other deco goodies. Uni stylefit multi-color inkpen is my favorite pen to use with my journals. Pilot Dr.Grip ballpoint pen is really very user friendly because the weight is so good for writing. Zebra mildliner is good to make soft highlight. And Pilot Frixion inkpen is good for starters to use as drawing tools such as me because it is erasable. I like to use Tombow MONO 2 way because it carries eraser and correct tape at the same time. And for journaling, I cant live without gluetape because it can make every piece of paper sticky, so that you can make stickers by yourself. Or sometimes, if you like a picture form a magazine, you can cut it from the magazine and stick it onto your journal with gluetape immediately. I love this Raymay scissors because it would not get sticky after cutting washitapes. And the pen shaped outlook makes it like a pen staying in my pencil case.

I hope you have a good time by looking through my wordy introduction. Thanks a lot!   

And you can find me at:
Instagram: @hongwanmo
Blog: (It is a chinese blog that I have updated for years.)
New blog: (I am planning to update this English blog later.)

Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful journal collection with us, Doris! Do any of you use a Hobonichi or Midori journal? If so, how do you like it and what do you use it for?


  1. this is definitely a great and envy-able collection hehehe. doris is a very creative and inspiring spirit, i can tell just from her planner. and everything is soooo organized. cool!

  2. Her collection is definitely enviable

  3. Love this post! I've been eyeing the HOBONICHI and the TN's for a while. This has helped me narrow it down for my needs. And those sticker folders from Mindwave are super!

  4. My goodness! That is inspiring!

  5. Thanks for the inspiring post! I absolutely loved it! :D

  6. I would have never thought of using a box like that for sticker flakes, but it is genius. I am getting one tonight.

  7. I really enjoyed your post. Trying to figure out what kind of book to use for ongoing bullet journal for errands, shopping lists etc. instead of little pieces of paper in my pockets.


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