Sunday, June 25, 2017

Modern Brush Calligraphy Alphabet (Bounce Lettering)

modern brush calligraphy alphabet - bounce lettering

I've been doing calligraphy for a little over a year now, and in that time, I've improved a lot - well, at least I like to think that I have. In the very beginning, I think one of the hardest things about starting was that I was lost in terms of an alphabet. I used to have look at a bunch of different Instagram calligraphers for different letter inspiration, but through that (and lots of practice doing various headers in my bullet journal), I've developed my own style in terms of modern calligraphy.

That style happens to consist pretty much completely of bounce lettering, which is where the lettering is a little more free-form, and each individual letter isn't completely straight on a baseline (especially the strokes that connect each letter together, which tend to go below the baseline in bounce calligraphy). That explanation probably didn't make much sense, so look through my Instagram, and you'll see a lot of examples of it (such as in this photo). I personally find bounce lettering easier than "normal" lettering because you can be a little sloppy, but it'll still look good. Plus, it automatically gives it that cute and "whimsical" look that modern calligraphy is often known for.

So, I've decided to share with you today my own modern calligraphy alphabet, specifically for bounce brush calligraphy (though you can still by all means use this same alphabet for other types of mediums). If you've just started learning calligraphy or if you haven't started yet and you have no idea where to begin (or if you just want to spice up your own calligraphy style with some variation), then this'll be a great resource to kickoff your hand-lettering journey, whether you want to do weddings, decorate your bullet journal, or anything in between.

If this is your very first attempt at any type of calligraphy, I highly suggest trying out faux calligraphy before brush calligraphy. It's not required, but I think it would be helpful.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

10 Tips for Bullet Journal Beginners

10 tips for bullet journal beginners
Starting a bullet journal can seem pretty intimidating, especially if you've seen all of the great - and frankly, maybe a little intimidating - pictures online. However, the bullet journal system (or bujo for short) is not created to be difficult nor complicated. So, in my experience of using a bullet journal for more than a year, I've decided to share some of the things I've learned in that time. Though these tips are aimed towards people who just began to use a bullet journal (or haven't even started one yet), I think these things might still help out a few of you more experienced bullet journalists. Anyway, without any further ado, here are some tips for bujo beginners!

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Bullet Journal Instagram Inspiration Part 1

bullet journal instagram inspiration

The bullet journal community has an amazingly vibrant online presence, and one of the best places to see this is on Instagram. You can find so much amazing inspiration there, so I decided to round up a whole bunch of great Instagram accounts that I follow for nice bujo pics - 20 accounts, in fact. I also included a post from each account so you can get a feel for their style of bullet journaling.

I think you'll enjoy photos from these bullet journalists like I do (even if it's just for the aesthetic), but you may also discover different things that you might want to incorporate into your own bullet journal.

And yes, I'm also on Instagram ;)

Monday, May 29, 2017

June 2017 Bullet Journal Setup

june 2017 bullet journal setup

Since it's almost June, I decided to do my monthly bullet journal setup today! June is going to be my first full month of summer break, so that's nice. Anyway, I don't have much to say, so here's my June monthly bujo setup!

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

PSA: How to Pronounce Leuchtturm

psa how to pronounce leuchtturm

I think that this will be quite a useful post for a lot of people. A couple weeks ago, I explained how to pronounce "fudenosuke", but in today's installment of PSA, I'll be addressing a very common issue: how to pronounce Leuchtturm. If you don't know, Leuchtturm1917 is a famous notebook brand based in Germany, and their notebooks are especially popular for bullet journaling.

The word "Leuchtturm" itself means "lighthouse" in German. I've seen a video on YouTube of an employee of the brand saying the term, but it's quite a heavily Anglicized pronunciation of the word. The correct German pronunciation is something like "LUOYSH-torm". That's really confusing (just like the language itself), so here's an attempted breakdown of each syllable:
  1. LUOYSH: this is the accented syllable, and it's pronounced like "loo-oy-sh" but all mushed together so that you can't hear the distinction between each part of the syllable
    • "Loo" as in British slang for toilet (rhymes with "moo")
    • "Oy" as in British slang for getting someone's attention (rhymes with "toy")
    • "Sh" just like in other words that end with "sh" (such as "lush" or "posh")
  2. Torm: it almost sounds like the name "Tom" but with an "r" in it
    • Kind of rhymes with the word "dorm" (and the pronunciation of the "o" is more similar to this than it is to "Tom"), but with a softer, less noticeable "r" sound
German is a hard language to speak, and nobody is expecting us English speakers to say it exactly like a native speaker. However, people should try to pronounce things at least kind of correctly, so I hope that this guide has helped you do just that.

What other other bujo/stationery words do you want to know how to pronounce? Make sure to leave it in a comment down below!

Edit: Sabine Dio, who lives in Germany, made a really high quality voice recording, and I think this'll be super helpful, too!

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Bullet Journal Hack: Numbering Tasks

bullet journal hack: numbering tasks

Hey! Today, I'm going to be sharing a small bullet journal hack with you guys. I think this is something that has helped me a lot with my own productivity, so I believe that this will also be helpful for you.

Anyway, this bullet journal hack is numbering your tasks in your daily spreads. This is especially useful when you're lacking motivation to be productive, like when it's the end of the school year as it is for me. What I first do is brainstorm all of the tasks I need to do for that particular day and then write them in my daily spread. I try to be realistic in that I only write down the things that I know I can actually get done. I think this helps me not feel like absolute crap if I don't meet impossible expectations, and it's easier to get focused if you don't have a mountain of work ahead of you.

After I write down all of my tasks for the day, I think about the order I want to do each task. For me, I personally find it best to do the easiest (but still important) tasks first, longer and more difficult important tasks next, and then tasks that aren't as important at the end since I might end up not having enough time for them. However, the order really is up to you and what personally works for you.

photo of bullet journal daily spread with numbered tasks

Once you've figured out the order for your tasks, then you number them! I write the numbers in the "signifier" space (the leftmost column next to bullets that's reserved for symbols that indicate important notes and things like that), like you can see in the picture above. This makes it easy to see all of my tasks and the corresponding order I'm going to do them in all at a glance.

This is quite a simple bujo hack, but I find it to be super effective, especially when I'm feeling unmotivated or overwhelmed if I have a lot of (boring) things to do. Still, I hope that this post helps you in your future bullet journal/planning endeavors!

What small things help your bujo system? Let me know in a comment down below!

Thursday, May 4, 2017

PSA: How to Pronounce "Fudenosuke"

psa how to pronounce fudenosuke

This is the first "real" PSA post (other than the introduction), and today, I'll be talking about how to pronounce "fudenosuke", as in the Tombow Fudenosuke Brush Pens. The word itself is Japanese, and it roughly means "Mr. Brush" in English.

According to slightly Anglicized Japanese pronunciation rules, it should be pronounced "foo-day-no-SOO-kay". Here is each syllable broken down:
  1. "Foo" as "food"
  2. "Day" as in "daylight"
  3. "No" as in the word that's the opposite of "yes"
  4. "SOO" as in "Susan" or "suit" (this is the stressed syllable)
  5. "Kay" as in "okay"
However, I found this YouTube video from Tombow USA. In the video, it's pronounced kind of like "foo-dough-NO-ski". Unfortunately, I completely disagree with this pronunciation. Since the word itself is Japanese, and Tombow is based out of Japan, "fudenosuke" should adhere to the original Japanese pronunciation as closely as possible.

Thus, I have to say that "foo-day-no-SOO-kay" is the proper way to pronounce this word.

What other words in the stationery community do you want to know how to pronounce? Let me know in a comment!

Monday, May 1, 2017

May 2017 Bullet Journal Setup

may 2017 bullet journal setup

Now that it's the beginning of a new month, it's time for a new monthly setup in my bullet journal! Anyway, I decided to do a video this month instead of a normal blog post since it will probably convey more detailed information (I hope), and I think it will save time on my end since I have so many school things and performances going on right now. I also think that this video is a lot better made than my last ones, so I hope you guys enjoy the video's production quality as well as the content itself.

I embedded the video down below, but you can also click on this link to go directly to it.

What was your bullet journal's setup like this month? Let me know in a comment down below!

Bujo setup for last month: April 2017
Bujo setup for next month: June 2017

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Common Myths and Misconceptions about the Bullet Journal

common myths and misconceptions about the bullet journal

Lately, more and more people are hearing about the bullet journal. However, there are a lot of common myths and misconceptions about it. Sometimes, these things can be enough to scare people away from trying the system out, or they just make life a lot harder than it needs to be. If you've only recently learned about the bullet journal (bujo for short) or if you just started one, then here are some things that I've learned in my experience of having a bujo that I think may be helpful to you. Even if you are a veteran to bullet journaling, then you still might discover something new in this post.

Anyway, let's get to debunking some common myths and misconceptions about the bullet journal!

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

PSA: Introduction

I've decided to start a new series on my blog called "PSA". Basically, there are some things in the stationery, calligraphy, or planner/bullet journaling community that bother me in terms of vocabulary, terminology, or just general ideas. Generally, it's newbies that happen to be ignorant just because they haven't had much experience with all of the different lexicon. However, I'm a big stickler when it comes to things like this, so it really bothers me every time I see someone use the wrong word if I know that it's wrong.

So, I resolved to make this series in the hopes that it will help someone out there. These posts will generally be short and sweet, but some will be longer. Most of them will be terms that are often confused (like stationery vs. stationary or embossing vs. debossing) and how to pronounce some words (like "Leuchtturm" and "fudenosuke").

I hope that these posts will be helpful to at least one person out there!

Friday, April 7, 2017

Bullet Journal Flip Through (1 Year's Progress)

Hey, guys! Today's post is a little different because it's not really a post at all; it's a video! I started bullet journaling a year ago in April 2016, so I wanted to show you guys the journey of my journals (hahaha). I decided to do it in the form of a video because it's easier for you to watch something on YouTube rather than look at several hundred photos in a blog post (and it's easier for me to make a video than to photograph and edit those several hundred photos). I also split it into 2 videos just for convenience.

The videos are embedded below, but you can also click on the following links:
Bullet journal flip through part 1
Bullet journal flip through part 2

I hope you enjoy these flip throughs! Leave me a comment if you want to see any more videos!

Sunday, April 2, 2017

April 2017 Bullet Journal Setup (Transition Into a New Journal)

April 2017 bullet journal setup: transition into a new journal

This month is especially exciting for my bullet journal! Okay, I know I say that a lot, but I really mean it this time, mainly for 2 reasons: 1) I'm moving into a new notebook (volume #3 to be exact), and 2) as of the beginning of this month, I've been using the bullet journal system for an entire year! My very first bujo monthly setup was from April of 2016, so I suggest checking that out if you want to see for yourself how my bujo has changed throughout the course of a year. However, I will be making a post next week all about that topic.

Anyway, without any further ado, here is my April 2017 bullet journal monthly setup, AKA transition into my third bujo!

Sunday, March 26, 2017

My Calligraphy Progress in 1 Year (and Our Journey in Journals 1 Year Blog Anniversary!)

You know what's crazy? The fact that it's been an entire year that I've been doing calligraphy and writing a post almost every week on this blog.

Okay, today isn't actually my one year blog anniversary; Our Journey in Journals was made around the 25th I think, but my very first blog post was published on 3/27/2016, so that's what I consider to be my blog's anniversary. Also, I don't really know what was the exact date that I started learning hand-lettering, but I know it was around the same time that I started OJIJ, so I also think of 3/27 as my calligraphy anniversary.

One measly year is not very much compared to a lot of other people, but it can really make a difference. In this post, I'll be going through the past year in terms of my calligraphy and this blog and see how they've both changed and (hopefully) improved. I hope that you'll find it inspirational to see that no matter how bad you think your stuff is now, it can only get better!

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Easy Ways to Decorate Your Bullet Journal

how to easily decorate your bullet journal

When starting a bullet journal, it's always best to begin simply and minimalist. If you're still trying to figure out and adapt the bujo system to the best of your needs, then it's a good idea to avoid unnecessary frills. I'm also a big proponent of the idea that you don't need specific tools to plan well. However, it can still be fun to decorate your bullet journal; the hard part is making things pretty whilst avoiding hours of work dedicated only to embellishing your pages. Thus, I've gathered up some ways that you can easily decorate your bullet journal!

Thursday, March 9, 2017

The Best Brush Marker for Calligraphy Beginners

the best brush marker for calligraphy beginners

Okay, I know that saying the "best" brush marker is a bit of a stretch, but I truly believe that out of all of the brush pens/brush markers that I know of, this is the overall best one for beginners starting to learn calligraphy. Seriously though, I really like these markers. They're amazing for calligraphy beginners, and even as a hand-lettering "veteran", I still use them all the time.

So, what are these magical brush markers? Read on to find out!

Thursday, March 2, 2017

March 2017 Bullet Journal Setup

march 2017 bullet journal setup

This is a really exciting month for me. Not only does March complete a full year of bullet journaling for me, both my one year calligraphy and blog anniversaries are this month! It only hit me yesterday that I've almost been using the bujo system for an entire year, and it's kind of crazy to see how it's both changed and stayed the same from when I first started back in April of 2016. Anyway, if you want to see my March 2017 bullet journal setup and compare it to April (link above), then keep reading!

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Goulet Pens Stationery Haul

A couple weeks ago, I made my first order from the Goulet Pen Company. I'm really excited about the stuff that I got, so I decided to make this haul post about said stuff. I ordered late at night on February the 9th (Thursday), and I received the package on the 11th (Saturday). I bought a variety of fountain pens, fountain pen inks, notebooks, and accessories for fountain pens.

✒ My first ever order from @gouletpens arrived today!! I'm so hyped to try everything out, since all I've done so far is unpack everything and try the Kaweco Skyline Sport Fountain Pen. However, I'm pretty sure that I'm gonna love everything that I purchased. Aside from the Kaweco, I also got a Noodler's Ahab, a bottle of Noodler's X-feather, a crap ton of ink samples (17 to be exact), a notebook sampler, a Rhodia pad, a Goulet notebook, the cleaning package set, and the cartridge converters for the Kaweco and my Pilot Metropolitan, which I got back in August. As you can tell, Goulet does not mess around when it comes to packing for shipping. I also really like the whale card thing. Anyway, now it's off to playing with my new goodies!! ~Mae-Mae ✒ #stationery #stationeryaddict #stationerylove #stationeryhaul #gouletpens #fountainpens #journals #notebooks #pens #bulletjournal #happymail #unboxing #luxurystationery
A post shared by Mae-Mae Han (@ourjourneyinjournals) on

Goulet is famous for their incredibly extensive packaging, and I was not disappointed; all of the liquids were wrapped in case of any spills, and all of the paper products were also wrapped for extra protection. I didn't take any pictures of the package before I took everything out, but I filmed this video of me opening all of the products. There were also a couple of extra goodies, like a Tootsie Pop and a handwritten thank you note that includes what ink color was used (though I think there's also supposed to be a Goulet bookmark, but I haven't seen it :( ). Anyway, now that I've gone through some of the non-stationery stuff, let's go to the actual meat of the post, shall we?

Thursday, February 16, 2017

How to Make a Bullet Journal Monthly Memories Spread

There are so many different types of bullet journal collections out there; there are trackers, different monthly layouts, and all sorts of lists. However, one of my very favorite collections in my bujo is the monthly memories spread. I first heard about it from Boho Berry, who learned about it from Passion Themed Life, and I find that it's a great way to incorporate your bullet journal into memory-keeping. If you want to learn how to make this type of spread, then read on!

Thursday, February 9, 2017

3 DIY Hand-Lettered Valentine's Day Cards (With Printables)

Since Valentine's Day is coming up, I know a lot of you will be making Valentine's Day cards. So, because of this, I decided to come up with three original ideas for hand-lettered cards that you can make yourself (if you are able to do calligraphy, that is). As a special bonus, they all feature stationery puns! Even though I don't really like Valentine's Day because it's always overrated for this perpetually single girl, I thought that having stationery puns would make it a lot more fun.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

February 2017 Bullet Journal Setup

Now that it's the beginning of the February, that means that it's time for the monthly bullet journal setup! This is my second setup of the year, and most things have stayed the same from January's setup, but there have been a few notable changes. Anyway, read on for my February bujo setup!

Thursday, January 26, 2017

25 Instagram Calligraphers Under 5k

Since Instagram is the main platform where I share and talk about my calligraphy, I knew that I wanted to do a roundup post about a bunch of awesome calligraphers on there. A long, long time ago (as in one of the very first posts I ever made on this blog), I wrote a post about some calligraphers and hand-letterers on Instagram. Unfortunately, that post was a complete and utter fail since I only included 6 different accounts. Thus, I wanted to redo that same post topic in order to give it proper justice.

However, I'm adding a bit of a twist to this post: I'm only featuring 25 calligraphers that all have less than 5,000 followers (at the time of writing this). Since you probably already know the "big" accounts like @thePostman'sKnock or @Chrystalizabeth, I wanted to give some smaller - but still amazing - accounts the credit they deserve. So, I hope with this roundup (that is in no particular order, BTW), you'll be able to find a new favorite calligrapher on Instagram!

Thursday, January 19, 2017

2016: the Year in Review + Reader Survey!

Nine months, two notebooks, and waaay too many pens later, I've got 35 blog posts, over 1,300 Instagram followers, and over 120,000 pageviews.

All I can say is thank you. I've had blogs before, but this is by far the most successful one. I've learned so much in this past year in terms of writing blog posts, photography, social media promotion, etc. And of course, I've picked up two awesome hobbies with absolutely amazing online communities: calligraphy and bullet journaling! Seriously though - all of you guys are great people, and I'm so thankful to have discovered these two groups.

Anyway, in this post, I'm going to be doing a breakdown of this year's milestones.

Friday, January 13, 2017

January 2017 Bullet Journal Setup

Wow guys, long time no see! I'm finally going to be able to make my setup post for January 2017. I haven't been able to do many blog related things (including posting on Instagram or even working on posts) mainly for two reasons:
  1. I was on vacation in Florida from New Year's Eve till the 8th, and
  2. I temporarily lost my bullet journal due to some unfortunate circumstances - read the Instagram caption below!
⚠⚠⚠ PLEASE READ THE CAPTION ⚠⚠⚠ 🌸 Hey guys, Mae-Mae here. Remember the Fort Lauderdale Airport shooting on Friday? Well, I was there in the airport. Fortunately, my family and I are physically well and are safe back home. Unfortunately, when we fled from the airport, I left almost all of my personal belongings in the terminal. This includes my phone and my *bullet journal*. This wouldn't be a big deal if after the shooting the FBI/the airport confiscated EVERYTHING that was left by the gates. Thus, I don't have my own phone nor my bujo. They're still sorting through the 20,000+ personal belongings, so I don't know when I'll be able to get my stuff back. I hope that it'll be soon, since I had school stuff in my backpack (school resumes tomorrow), many of my most used pens for calligraphy (including my Tombow Fudenosuke), and of course, my phone and bullet journal are both incredibly important for my life. Anyway, I'm probably going to be taking a bit of a blogging break. Since my blog is mostly centered around bullet journals, there isn't much I can for OJIJ if I don't even have my bujo, which also had a lot of planning for future posts. Please send your prayers that everyone will be able to get their stuff back (including car/house keys, ID's, and laptops) soon. I feel selfish for complaining about this when there were people that DIED or were injured, but eh. The thing I'm saltiest about is that the "shooting" that I was "in" was a false alarm; this inconvenience is happening for naught. ~Mae-Mae 🌸
A photo posted by Mae-Mae Han (@ourjourneyinjournals) on

Basically, the TL;DR is that during a second Fort Lauderdale Airport shooting that turned out to be a false alarm, I left my phone and my backpack (which had my bullet journal in it) in the airport when my family and I fled. The FBI then confiscated everything that was left by the gates, so they had to sort through 24,000 items. However, thankfully, I got my phone and my backpack back yesterday!! That means that I get to have my "real" bullet journal again (I've been using a random notebook as a temporary bujo - I might make a post about it sometime), meaning I can actually show you guys my January setup.

Anyway, I'm glad I've you got you guys updated on what's been going on in my life lately. Now that we've gotten that out of the way, let's get to the actual setup part of this - welcome to the fist bullet journal setup post of 2017!