Filofax Illustrated Diary Refill Pack – review

Hi there! Here’s a sneak peak of my inserts haul for 2017:

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I’ll be going through each planner individually once I have everything set up, plus (surprise!) a new planner that I’ll be introducing in 2017. 🙂 Today, I want to go over something I bought on a bit of a whim: the pre-decorated Filofax inserts (officially known as the “Illustrated Diary Refill Pack”).

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I bought these (http://www.filofax.co.uk/stripes-illustrated-refill-pack-a5-6353.html) in A5 for my work Filofax, even though I’m not totally convinced they’re going to be necessary, given that I use my Plum Paper Large Teacher’s Planner for most work-related planning. However, I thought it would be handy and elegant to have something like this at hand, and as I haven’t liked any of the other A5 inserts I’ve used over the past two years I thought I’d try something new. I bought the striped ones, though I was sorely tempted by the geometric pattern as well. In the end, I thought the striped ones were a bit more in keeping with my style.

So here’s what I like…

  • They’re really pretty! The fun monthly tabs add a burst of color to the overall planner look, and the decoration is quite nice. There’s also a strip of pattern down the inner edge of every page, so it’s easy to identify them in the planner, even when it’s closed.
  • There’s a good variety of page types. Besides the week on two pages and month tabs, you get matching to-do pages, blank notepaper, and lined notepaper.
  • The paper quality is much better than I expected, better than normal Filofax inserts. And this is kind of a given since they’re A5, but there’s lots of space to write!
  • The days are nicely divided. Each day has three columns, a mid-sized one on the left, a larger one in the center, and a very small one on the right. They are unlabelled, so you could use these however you want.
  • At the top of each week, you have a small calendar showing you the current month, the previous month, and the next month, with the week shown on the two pages highlighted. More useful than it seems, as it means no flipping back and forth to quickly reference dates!

…and what I don’t like:

  • First and foremost: the monthly tabs. Each tab has a striped pattern on the front page matching the color for that month, and on the back a month on one page with a bit of space for notes and to-dos. That’s fine, except…the weeks have been printed so that there are no blank pages between months. That means that to insert the monthly dividers into the weekly pages, I have to put them between the two pages that make up the first week of the month. Meaning that for 12 weeks of the year, I can’t see my whole week without flipping the tab back and forth. This seems like a silly detail but it’s annoying, and something that would have been easy to solve by adding some extra notes pages between months.
  • Every month has a different color, but the stripe along the left hand side of the page is always the same royal blue color. Maybe this is just a personal annoyance, but I would have preferred to see that stripe change color with the month. Some people might actually like the way this looks, though.

So more positives than negatives, though the issue with the monthly dividers is a bit frustrating. All in all, I would say that these are a good purchase if you like decorated pages and a week on two pages format, but don’t have time/energy to decorate yourself. I’m happy with the purchase for the time being, as I think the pages look nice inside my nude Original, and will also prove to be functional. Time will tell!

Organizedly yours,

L.

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