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September Plan With Me

I love September because it always feels like a fresh start! This month for our journal we are doing a large calendar, a goals and habits page, a weekly spread, and a cover that I think you're absolutely going to love. If you are setting up a journal for the fall or back-to-school, I’ve got you covered.

Watch the September Plan With Me for details and examples:

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I’m working in my Baron Fig notebook - I highly recommend it for its great paper quality. As always, I’ll be starting with my dutch door cover page and continuing with the birth month flowers as my theme. September’s flower is the aster - they are easy to draw and we’ll do a few different styles of them through the spreads. I start by placing the title on the page using a quick tracing technique, making it much easier than it looks. Asters are typically a periwinkle blue with a yellow stamen so I’m using a very complementary color palette of purples and yellows. I am using Faber Castell Brush Markers as well as a few Tombows because they have a few more purples. The asters have such a delicate petal they are easy to freehand and made of quick little lines.

For step by step instructions, check out the video. I know I go through everything quickly, so you can use the still images here as you are following along.

Print the month title in a font that you like (I used a font called Rozha) , then cover the back side of the paper in graphite. Place the title on your page and carefully trace over it using a sharp pencil.

Use brush pens or markers to create a messy burst of asters behind the letters. Remember to layer your colors and don't worry about getting things perfect!

Finish the illustration with grey leaves and pen. I used a black brush pen to add a shadow to my letters, but that is totally optional.

I like to keep my monthly goals and affirmations 'hidden' on the page below. And it's also a good spot to do a quick doodle of the monthly birth flower.

Last month we did a very small calendar but this month it will be a full two-page spread. I’m going to continue with the asters on every page. Under the dutch door, I repeated the colorful asters but added a sketchy black line. Here I’m going to create a sketchy pen drawing of the asters to frame the calendar. I block them out first in pencil with circles so you can sketch them easily knowing exactly how many petals you need and keeping them the right shape. I am adding a lot of line shading to create more contrast and detail. The calendar itself is a 5x5 square, a little to the left, and not quite in the middle. I get an imperfectly perfect hand-drawn calendar by pulling the pen towards myself, going over the pencil sketch. I decided to leave the bottom open, which creates a perfect spot where there are no more days to put the title.

Tip #1 To create a little more contrast, I am coloring in the boxes across the top with my Faber Castell brush marker. Using this or a Koi brush marker is perfect because they tend not to bleed through the page the way a pen would.

This month we are doing a fun spread all about goals and gratitude. September always feels like a new year or a fresh start to me so it is the perfect month to include this. I start with three boxes drawn in pencil and grab my Pigma Micron - any kind of fine liner will do. This is such a fun way to do an interesting illustration that doesn’t take long - it is a lot of bang for your buck. I’m basically just sketching in or doodling some leaves and flowers to fill in each square. The main thing is that you do not go over the pencil line. Use the line as your guide to draw right up against it but not cross. You can stick with leaves only or try anything: flowers, citrus slices, or butterflies.

Tip #2 If you are drawing anything more complicated than leaves you can do it in pencil first. I blocked out the flowers in pencil because it was more comfortable. After I added more line shading to give it more contrast, it's so easy to do but elevates the drawings.

All you have to do afterward is erase all the pencil lines. You are left with three pretty, crisp, and clean drawings that create a nice and organized list of three. I am writing down things I am grateful for, good habits I want to keep or maintain in September, and then some goals for the autumn.

In August I was away a lot, so I feel like I barely got to use the layout I developed. I want to keep using it into September but am changing it up with clusters of asters. Same as before I mark off the six areas, in the Baron Fig - each one is 7 squares with a square in between. I put the circle in the middle and the day of the week below. At the top, I add my calendar but you could use this space for anything. Once I block it all out in pencil I go over it with my Pigma Micron and add the numbers in white gel pen. Now we get to have some fun and add the asters. Continuing the same color palette I start with a whole bunch of circles for the stamens and then create a big messy cluster of asters, blending the colors and layering the marker.

That is the month of September! Lots of asters, a nice big calendar, and lots of space to track our goals. Thank you for reading and have a great September!

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