How To Combine Two Planning Styles in One Layout

How To Combine Two Planning Styles in One Layout

By: Sarah Shmuel (@sarahannplans)

White space. No white space. Plan as I go. Functional. Decorative. There are so many ways that you can fill out your planner and finding planner peace can be incredibly difficult due to all of your options. When I first started planning I struggled to find a style that worked best for me. I finally settled on no white space but I found that during special weeks (such as vacation weeks) that style of planning wouldn't work for me. Then I thought about doing something I hadn't really seen before: combining two planning styles into one single layout.

As a person that enjoys consistency, symmetry and the beauty of a perfectly executed layout, the thought of combining two different planning styles into a single week made me apprehensive. However, my needs for the week I was going to Florida to visit a friend had changed and I thought it would be fun to give it a try.

The first half of my layout had to be functional due to all of the extra chores I had to complete. Making lists for packing is big for me so having my to do lists were pretty crucial. I decided to stick to my typical no white space style to keep it as functional as possible and to ensure that I would not forget anything as I was preparing for my trip.

For the second half of my week I decided to dip my toe in the plan as I go style to do some memory planning for my actual vacation. As you can see I was a little apprehensive and didn't really commit: it looks a lot like my no white space style with some extra stickers scattered about. Still, I was happy with how the whole layout looked.

Then, last year for my birthday I planned another trip to visit the same friend in Florida. I decided to give it another try and plan the first half of the week with no white space and the second half as a plan as I go.

I am so happy with how this layout came out. I decide to commit to the two styles and it worked out so much better for me.

The first half of my week remained functional and I am so in love with how it looks (I mean this birthday kit is pretty amazing, right?). It allowed me to accomplish everything before I left and ensured that I didn't forget anything.

For the second half of the week I committed to the white space/plan as I go style and it worked out perfectly. I was able to decoratively record all of my memories of my amazing birthday weekend with my best friend. I wasn't sure how it would look as a full layout and whether or not the two styles would work together to create a beautiful layout that I would want to look at again.

Luckily, I really loved it. And I have to say as much as I've talked about the logistics of combining two planning styles into a single layout, the main point of this blog post is to reiterate that to me, the best part of planning is enjoying the process. It is about being creative and experimenting and trying new things that will work for your needs that are constantly changing.

When I first started planning I wanted that perfect Instagram worthy layout. Now, I just want to have fun while creating a functional and beautiful space to organize my life. If I had not stepped out of my comfort zone I never would have these layouts that I'm so happy with and I would have vacation memories saved in a way that just didn't work for me.

Using two different planning styles in a single layout may not work for you and that's totally fine! I think the important thing is to remember that planning is cathartic, therapeutic, creative and FUN. Don't be afraid to experiment!

I was super excited to write this post as well because tomorrow marks the first day of my Staycation where I will be planning similarly to the layouts above using the adorable new Staycation Weekly Kit! I absolutely can't wait to share it with you! In the meantime, pick up your very own ADORABLE Exo Staycation kit here and use the code SARAH10 to save 10% on your order.


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I LOVE seeing this and how you explained the styles and their purposes! I’ve always been between white space and no, but now I’ve been leaning towards white space again. As much as I think TNs are amazing, I just can’t get them to work for me with my addiction to stickers. (I know, it can be done, but I’m terrible at it!) It’s awesome to see a comparison of styles in an EC since that’s all I’m good at, haha! (:


I love symmetry & everything to look balanced & neat so I’m not sure I could do this, but you totally rocked it!! <3 Your layouts are always so pretty!

Darchelle Vajen

Love the way you combined both ways of planning! It looks seamless! I tend to get stressed out with no white space planning- but this is making me want to try again!


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