August Bullet Journal Collections September 15, 2016 05:00

In the last blog post focusing on bullet journaling we gave you a brief introduction and pointed you to some great resources regarding what bullet journaling is and how it might be perfect for your life. So, head back for a refresher.

On the bullet journal website there are great free starter guides that you can stick in your journal as a reference as you get started to help you create some consistency. But the beauty of bullet journaling is the versatility and flexibility to adapt the system to what works for you. 

Every page in your bullet journal is referred to as a collection (of which you index). Today I wanted to share some of the collections I created in August to help you visualize the system and for inspiration. (For quick reference: If you're using the UPstudio Arrow Journal for your bullet journal system each page is 44 spaces by 28 spaces when you're dividing up your layout.)

Birthday List

I am super bad at remembering birthdays so I decided to start gathering them together (from phone contacts, planner, outlook calendar, husband's brain, etc) and make a master list. Don't worry if you haven't made the cut yet, it is a work in progress!

UPstudio - Bullet Journal - Birthday List

Habit Tracker

I've been trying to hold myself more accountable to things I'd like to do more regularly, to try and create better habits. I thought a visual representation of some of those things might help to motivate me.

UPstudio - Bullet Journal - Habit Tracker

Daily To-Do Lists

I'm a list maker, that is for sure! I tried a new layout one week for my rapid daily logging. A little more appealing to the eye when compared to my average week, I think I like it. Pretty and still 100% functional.

UPstudio - Bullet Journal - Weekly To- Do List for Daily Rapid Logging

Have you started using the bullet journal system (or been at it awhile)? If so, we'd love to see some of your collections. Comment on this post with a link for us (and our readers) to check them out. Looking for ideas to try in September!

Lessons Learned: Binding Types May 26, 2016 08:00

At UPstudio we pride ourselves on jumping in to every new product and really diving in to all aspects of what we are creating.  If you know us, then you know that we are both Type A, detail oriented planners, so we want to be involved with and informed on every decision about every product.  The quality, color, texture, printing method, paper type, binding type, and even shipping method are all carefully considered.  We do extensive research and sample testing before making final decisions, because we feel each of these decisions can really make or break a product (and we hope you can tell the difference!)  Today, we're going to focus on what some different binding types are, and some reasons to choose one over another.

Binding types play an important role in design.  The aesthetics of each are very different, as well as cost, how many pages are possible to be bound together, and how the book performs in the end.  While some choose a binding type last, we studied these in conjunction with everything else when designing products since it affects so many other aspects. 

Here are a few binding types that we considered for products, and some of their qualities:

Saddle Stitch

To create a Saddle Stitch a piece of wire is inserted through the cover and all pages and bent back to hold them all together, resulting in looking like a staple, usually at 2-3 locations along the spine.  Pros - cost efficient, cover art can be continuous, Cons - less aesthetically pleasing, pages will not lay flat when opened, page number limited to ~80.


Sewn Bound

Sewn Bound is exactly as described as pages are stitched together with thread along the entire spine.  Pros - aesthetically pleasing, cover art can be continuous, Cons - costly and time consuming, not readily manufactured, pages will not lay completely flat when opened, page number limited to ~40.


Perfect Bound

Pages are folded into sections and then the ends of the folded side are cut off and roughed up, in order to adhere to the glue, which is applied along the entire spine to the wrap-around cover.  Pros - aesthetically pleasing, cost efficient, pages will lay completely flat when opened (if page count allows), page capacity of ~200 pages, cover art can be continuous, Cons - when more than ~60 pages are included, pages will not lay completely flat when opened. *This binding type is used on the UPstudio Journal!



Hardcover binding includes several steps, with interior pages being sewn together in sections, and then glued along the entire spine to the hard cover of the book.  Pros - aesthetically pleasing, page capacity of ~400 pages, cover art can be continuous, Cons - costly, pages will not lay completely flat when opened.


Spiral Bound

For Spiral Binding, holes are punched through pages of the book and held together with a circular plastic coil.  Ends are crimped to prevent the coil from sliding off.  Pros - cost effective, pages will lay flat when opened, book can turn back on itself and lay flat, page capacity of ~250 pages, many color and size options, Cons - less aesthetically pleasing, cover is divided and not continuous.


Wire-O Bound

Wire-O Binding is very similar to Spiral Binding, the difference being in the quality of the binding itself.  The wire coil is much more durable than plastic coil noted above.  Pros - aesthetically pleasing, pages will lay flat when opened, book can turn back on itself and lay flat, page capacity of ~250 pages, many color and size options, Cons - less cost effective, cover is divided and not continuous.  *This binding type is used on the 2016 UPstudio Planner!


There are other binding types out there, but these are the ones that we run in to the most for product development.  We hope you learned a little bit more about binding types, and how important they can be!  

What is Bullet Journaling? April 14, 2016 10:27

First off, for all of our Charlotte fans: this Saturday, UPstudio will be participating in the Pink Social Girl Tribe Pop-up. It will be held at the Sugar Creek Brewery in Charlotte, NC. Click here for more details.

So.. Bullet Journaling.. 

We first heard of bullet journaling at the Pink Social Girl Tribe Pop-Up last December. We had a customer tell us about how her roommate had just stumbled upon it and was going to try it. The customer bought one of our planners thinking that since we have a significant amount of graph paper, her roommate could utilize our planner for the task. Let's be honest, we didn't know what she was talking about, and we weren't sure how our planner would stand up to the challenge. Needless to say, the customer went back to her car, watched some videos on bullet journaling to confirm and 15 minutes later came back to our booth and asked us if she could return the planner. We accepted her return and made a mental note to look into this bullet journaling thing.

We then turned to Google. Apparently bullet journaling is a "movement", and there are tons of resources out there to help you understand how to use it to your advantage. 

For some, bullet journaling is just using a notebook with pages that have bullets or dots and creating your own designs and layouts for list making, tracking, or as a planner, by connecting dots in a creative manner.  

For other it is a more rigorous system. The best resources I found explaining the bullet journal system are the Bullet Journal website and a blog post by Tiny Ray of Sunshine.

First off, I would definitely recommend watching the video on the Bullet Journal website. It is the best way to visualize the system and to understand the basics.

To over simplify, the bullet journal system is a notebook (typically with bullets or dots) containing a collection of ideas (whether it be sketches, lists, diary, planner, etc.) that is organized with an index. Start a new page with a new idea, give it a title/topic and add it to the index at the front of your notebook (page numbers used for reference).

(Interesting fact: The system was created by Ryder Carroll, a Designer based in New York. In his words, the Bullet Journal is meant “to help you track the past, organize the present, and plan for the future.”)

Lets break up this post with some photos of examples:


Tiny Ray of Sunshine Bullet Journal Example


Roz Plans on Instagram Bullet Journal Example


Pretty Prints and Paper Bullet Journal Example


Boho Berry Bullet Journaling Example

We won't get into the nuts and bolts of bullet journaling (because lets be honest, that would be a crazy long blog post and you probably wouldn't read it), you can read the two resources we listed above for all the nitty gritty.

But lets talk about how you can utilize some of our products if you decide to dip your foot into the bullet journal pool.

1. Our new Arrow Journals with dot internal pages are 100% ready for bullet journaling. They have 80 numbered pages ready to catch all of your indexing and ideas. 

UPstudio Arrow Journal with Dot Pages, Bullet Journal

2. Our favorite aspect of the bullet journal system is how you can utilize it when making lists or what they call "rapid logging". Our Sticky Pad - Dots and the UPstudio Planner (in addition to our new journal) are perfect for this system. 

Rapid logging relies on a short description paired with bullets and signifiers. Every bulleted item is entered into your list with a short objective description. The type of bullet will help you organize entries into three categories: Tasks, Events, and Notes. Signifiers are additional symbols that serve to give bullets further context.

This is the basic breakdown of bullets and signifiers, but you are strongly encouraged to add your own as needed and make a legend for yourself.

Bullets Explained - UPstudio

An example list: Note that you start with the simple dot for all tasks and it morphs into one of the other three states as you complete or migrate items.

Example of List

One of the key components is migration. When creating a new list consider all items on your previous list(s) that were not completed (or simply still just noted with a "•"). Cross out items you no longer want to tackle and transform your dot into a ">" for those you migrate to a new list. If you're like us, you over-commit yourself with your to-do lists and end up migrating a lot of items.

We just brushed the surface on bullet journaling and we are by no means experts. Again, we highly recommend checking out the Bullet Journal website and this blog post by Tiny Ray of Sunshine for more in-depth information.  We're learning right along with you!

New Products - 2016 Spring Release! April 7, 2016 08:00

While you were out on Spring Break we have been hard at work behind the scenes to release new products, and are thrilled to share them with you today.  Get ready, we've got some really exciting stuff!  The shop listings are filled with a lot of information, but we'll give you the highlights of new products below.  Everything you see on the website will be available at upcoming shows and pop up markets, including the Pink Social Girl Tribe Spring Pop Up in Charlotte on April 16 (we hope to see you there!)

Drumroll please...

Planners and Calendars

I know what you're thinking: old news, right?  We'll release 2017 editions later this year, but while we still have some 2016 styles in stock, our prices have dropped AGAIN!  Planners are now $15 and calendars are $5!

Vintage Products

This is not a surprise as we've been advertising them on social media and had a previous blog post about them, but we want to stress that we're getting new items into the shop frequently, so make sure to check back on the website for what is available!  We'll post on social media too, so follow us on Instagram (@upstudionc) and/or Facebook if you want updates.  We are absolutely swooning over this adorable umbrella.


Sticky Pads

Hopefully you saw the poll that we launched and voted for your preference of sticky or non sticky for notepads.  Sticky was the official winner, so these beauties can now easily stay wherever you want them - on the refrigerator, in your planner, taken to the grocery store, on your bathroom mirror, etc.  The dot pattern can be used as a grid for list making, bullet journal style listing, or an impromptu game of dots (anyone else remember doing this on long car rides?)  Side note: check out this life changing sticky pad tutorial from Elite Daily on how to remove a sheet without the sticky side curling up.  So helpful!


Chick Flick Catchphrase Pencil Set

We loooove this new set of pencils because these lines from movies really speak to us.  One, all these movies are classics that we've seen countless times, but even out of context, you know exactly what they're referencing.  We wrote down every quotable quote we could think of and picked our top favorites.  Girly themed movies won this time, and we think it's perfectly appropriate for our #girlboss business.  (We'd love to hear your favorite and if these resonate with you!) #illhavewhatsheshaving


Everyday Cards

The line of Everyday Cards has also been expanded to include 4 new designs.  Highlights of these new cards include small images on the opposite side of the card, as well as some more occasion-specific cards instead of generic designs.  Each one is still all-purpose and BONUS - now you can purchase cards individually!  (Side note: did you know that April is National Letter Writing Month?  Snag a few of these and send out some overdue notes to friends or family!)



Last but not least are journals.  Heavy linen paper covers in the Arrows design protect your choice of either blank pages or dot filled pages to jot down lists, sketches, bullet journal lists, meeting notes, or whatever your heart desires.  All internal pages are top quality for whatever use you choose.  The best part is that these are perfect bound and lay flat!


We hope you are as excited about these new products as we are!  Let us know your feedback - what are you most excited about?  What Everyday Card is your top pick?  Do you prefer dots or blank pages in your journal?  What's your favorite quote from a classic chick flick?  What product do you hope to see next?  (Don't worry - we're already working on new ideas to come out soon!)