I’ve been trying to find lesser known planners to try for the 52 planners in 52 weeks challenge. I stumbled across the Ashley Shelly planner when I was searching for a horizontal planner layout. I wanted to try something different from the usual lined layout.
Disclaimer: I was going to buy the planner and reached out to Ashley to see if she wanted to collaborate. She sent me the planner for free (I paid for shipping). All opinions are my own.
The Ashley Shelly Planner
- Weekly layout (1 week at a glance) with Schedule and To Do List sections
- Equal space for ALL days of the week including Saturday and Sunday
- Space for dinner planning on each day
- Hard, glossy cover, size 7.25″ X 9.25″ including binding
- Inside pages are 6″x9″ and 80# text weight (nice and thick!) and in full color!
- Silver Wire-O binding
Features of the Ashley Shelly Planner:
- Inside front cover pocket
- Clear zip pouch bound in on first page for sticker sheets or loose papers
- Silver metal corner protectors
- Colorful, laminated monthly tabs on 80# cover cardstock
- Perforated bottom corners to tear off each week and create a built-in bookmark! <—- love this feature
- Creative Spreads each month to help you create the best days and focus in on what you love
- 2017 Inspiration Board page
- Important Contacts page
- Favorite Meal Ideas page
- 2017 Planning Overview spread
- 2017 & 2018 Yearly Overviews page
- 2017 Holidays List page
- Notes spreads each month with long and short lines
- Holidays marked on monthly and weekly spreads for easy planning
- Weighs 1.375 lbs (0nly 0.6kg – shipping isn’t too expensive at about $23 to Australia)
Let’s take a look inside the planner
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).
Let’s start with the cover! There’s a couple of cover options to choose from. I opted for the stripes:
Very sturdy chipboard cover and metal coil binding
The planner isn’t as wide as the Plum Paper and Erin Condren planner and a bit longer)
The planner starts with a pocket folder for temporary storage of bills, receipts etc.
There’s a clear zip up pocket for storing planner stickers, mail etc.
Planner tips from the creator of the planner as well as an inspiration board page that’s blank so you could make it into anything you wanted: a mind map, flow chart, checklist, monthly goals etc.
Monthly goal setting pages
With lots of space to plan and really think through what you want to achieve that month:
Love that 2017 and 2018 are on the same page as most planners split them into 2 so you have to flick back and forth all the time checking dates.
The national holidays are for the USA (where the planner is from)
Love the favorite meal ideas page – more planners should include this!
Important contacts page (which I would probably turn into a password log page since contacts are stored on my phone).
Another option would be to white out the ‘name’ and use it for more meal ideas space or a monthly goal setting page since there isn’t one already included in the planner.
2 page monthly calendar with lined writing spaces (something that’s not included with most planners!)
The week starts on a Sunday
The sidebar has a dates a glance section for the previous and following month. I’d probably cover these up with some checklist stickers as I tend just use the dates at a glance pages that are in the front (or back) of planners.
The notes column is also lined and US holidays are pre-printed for each day.
One thing I really like about this planner is that the holidays are printed beside the date at the top of the box, rather than the bottom as most planners do i.e. it doesn’t waste valuable planning space.
Each month features a 2 column lined notes page (ideal for list making) and a notes page without the second column
The weekly spread starts on a Monday. This is one of those weird planners that start the month on 1 day but then the weekly spread on a different day.
Love, love love the weekly spread of this planner – it’s the main reason I want to try this planner (which is will for the 52 planners in 52 weeks challenge – make sure you subscribe to be notified when that post is published!)
The weekly spread starts with a large lined notes section with 2 columns – ideal for more list making space if you’re a list-a-holic like I am 🙂 This would also be a good spot to put weekly habit tracking planner stickers.
There’s space to plan appointments (or just turn it into more checklist space). I’m intending to use this space for priority tasks and using 1 side of the time planning section for a checkbox and the other column for numbering the tasks, with those little random things and errands that pop up throughout the week on the to do list section on the right.
The due today section would be ideal if you’re a student, for bills or I’ll be using it for that day’s blog post.
Also love that there’s a dinner section. The space is wide enough that you could squeeze a second line of text if you write small.
Weekends aren’t combined! 🙂 They have the same amount of planning space as the rest of the week.
Pros of the Ashley Shelly Planner
- Perforated corners of the pages – so you can tear them off and keep track of what page you’re up to
- Very thick cover
- Sturdy silver edges on the corner of the cover to prevent damage
- Lined monthly calendar boxes
- Nice colors – love that the cover coordinates with the colors used throughout the planner and the tabs
- Each month features a 2 column lined notes page (ideal for list making) and a notes page without the second column
- Simple functional layout continues throughout the entire planner
- There are no hours printed on the weekly spread – it really bugs me when planners do this – they either do hourly or half hourly and start too early or don’t end late enough
Tabs are laminated for durability. The months are printed on the front and back of the tabs.
The corners of the planner are perforated so you can tear it off at the end of each week and easily keep your place – this is a feature I wish more planners included!
The corners also have a sturdy protective silver corner in addition to the already thick and sturdy cover – this planner definitely isn’t going to get damaged easily.
The covers are wide enough that the tabs are protected when the planner is closed rather than sticking out when the planner cover is closed like most planners do
Cons of the Ashley Shelly Planner
- There was some print smudges at the top of the pages and on some of the planner pages
- The paper is thin so the design bleeds through the back side of the page
- Calendar boxes split the day in 2 rather than going to the top of the calendar – drives me nuts when planners do this!
- No extra notes pages at the back of the planner – there’s only the notes pages distributed throughout the planner behind each of the monthly calendars
Overall, this planner is really well laid out (with the exception of the monthly calendar box). It feels sturdy, has a well thought out and functional weekly layout, lined writing space and an affordable price tag to match!
There was some ghosting of the pens – particularly the thicker marker style (Smiggle and Triplus 1.0mm) – although I’m yet to find a planner with thick enough paper that this doesn’t happen.
More inky pens such as the Pilot Multiball also had some light ghosting.
Ballpoint pens seemed to work the best in terms of not showing through to the other side (as always!)
The paper didn’t agree with my favorite pens – the Pilot Frixion Erasable – as well as the paper of other planners 🙁 I had to leave it longer than I normally would to erase to prevent smearing (as you can see in the photo below).
More planner reviews:
- Honest review of the Happy Planner by Me and my Big Ideas (MAMBI)
- Ultimate list of the best planner pen brands and how to choose colors for color coding
- Custom Erin Condren Planner Cover versus DIY planner cover: which is better?
- My all time favorite planner pens: Pilot Frixion Erasable Pens Review
- Mi Goals Planners Haul & Review (Planners made in Australia)
- 5 Planner supplies you should never skimp on
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