This review has been on my to do list for ages… Happy Planner are branching out from only doing discbound! I normally avoid sewn bound planners however the pages in these planners actually lat flat without having to hold the pages open with your hand, and you don’t even need to break the spine before you use the planner.
There are 4 bookbound planners:
- Vertical weekly spread
- Horizontal weekly spread
- Dashboard weekly spread (1 page weekly + 1 page lists)
- Vertical Be Well (fitness) weekly spread
In this post I’m reviewing the first 3 (I don’t use a fitness planner so didn’t get that one).
- Size: 7″ wide x 9.25″ high (same size as the discbound classic Happy Planner)
- Sewn bound
- 1 cover color only for each version
- No cover personalisation
- Dated for 2020 (I haven’t seen 2021 versions but I hope they’re going to make them)
- Dates at a glance page
- Monthly planning / notes page
- 2 page Monthly calendar (starts on Sunday)
- 2 page weekly spread (starts on Monday)
- Colorful inside pages
- 1 lined notes page at the back of the planner
- No pocket folder
- 1 Ribbon bookmark
Let’s take a closer look!
To enlarge the screen of the video, click the square icon in the bottom right hand corner of the video (it will say ‘full screen’ when you hover your mouse over the icon).
The covers are thick and sturdy so this version is a bit heavier than the discbound version with laminated covers.
Each layout comes in one cover color only.
Each planner is about 1.25″ (1.6cm) thick
Let’s start with my favorite of the 3: the dashboard weekly layout. If you’re looking for a review of the discbound dashboard weekly see this post.
Love these quarterly planning pages. I wish Happy Planner would do a list style monthly planner in this type of layout instead of the boxes calendar format.
There are no tabs but each divider has a colored strip to help find it easier. There are different divider designs for each month.
Like all the other Happy Planners, the monthly calendar starts Sunday (not consistent with the weekly spread).
Each box is about 1.5″ wide x 1.5″ high (4cm x 4cm).
Unfortunately MAMBI are still doing the split boxes on the monthly calendar.
The line spacing is 6mm.
The line spacing is slightly bigger at 7mm on the 1 notes page at the back.
There is no pocket folder fixed to the inside of the front or back cover.
Horizontal Weekly Spread
The horizontal version has more color than the dashboard version with a mix of pastel purple, pink, blue, green and orange used throughout. I normally hate pastel colors but I really like the ones used in this planner. They are a close match for the Stabilo Boss pastel highlighters.
Vertical Weekly Planner
The colors of this version are mostly blue with pink, mint and purple for some of the months:
I didn’t do a pen test in these planners as I assume they have the same paper as the discbound version which I’ve done a pen test of in the past. Here were the results:
As is the case with all of the other Happy Planners, the paper is thick and holds up well with no ghosting for most pens and very minimal ghosting for marker pens
Pros of the bookbound planners
- Feel like they weigh less than most hardcover planners
- Pages lay flat on their own
- Different colors for each layout
- Multiple weekly spreads to choose from
- Functional layouts
Cons of the bookbound planners
- No tabs
- Only 1 color scheme per layout
- Only 1 ribbon bookmark
- Only 1 notes page
- Only comes in Happy Planner classic size, not the mini or big sizes
Would I use the bookbound planner?
Yes. I normally avoid planners with stitched binding as they usually don’t lay flat on their own and have yellow paper. These ones are great quality for a reasonable price (especially for full color printing).
If you like these planners, my sister stocks them in her planner supplies shop, Carefully Crafted.
More planner reviews:
- Whistle and Birch Weekly Planner Review
- Life Organized Weekly Planner by Paper House
- Custom Agendio Vertical Weekly Planner Review
- Favorite washi tape for planning, planner decorating & color coding
- Minimalist planning: simple decorating & divider ideas for your planner using pens
- Bored with your planner? 25 ways to mix it up
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