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Planner Binding Options: Find the Right One for YOU!

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Picture of a woman using a wire spiral binding machine. Part of an article : Planner Binding Options: Find the Right One for YOU!

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Table of Contents

Finding the right binding options for your planner can be hard…I’ve been there. Let’s see if I can help you with what I have learned along the way.

Planner Binding Options – Introduction

Maybe you are like me and started to realize that you wanted the custom planner that fulfills your planner needs, but weren’t willing to spend the time to create the spreads each and every week or month.

Or perhaps you like creating your planner spreads each time, but want the flexibility of being able to move the pages around when it suits you.

Finally you might be aware that a bullet journal notebook doesn’t last you for the full year, but you want to keep your yearly pages without remaking them in a second notebook.

All of these scenarios were what I faced, and I knew I wanted to make a custom planner that I could print and use easily.

Making the printables wasn’t a problem for me but how was I going to bind the pages together? Let’s dive into the different options and look at the pros and cons for each of them.

Ring Binder

  • PROS = You can easily move pages around. Finding a cover that you like should be easy as there are many options. It is easy to find large rings, so you can have a very thick planner. You don’t need any binding equipment.
  • CONS = The rings can get in the way while writing in the planner. The pages can move slightly, it isn’t a tight binding option. Opening and closing the rings can be a bit annoying.

One thing about these – there are many custom planner binders out there. So you could buy one and not even need to print out your own pages. So in terms of materials needed, this might be the simplest because you just buy one thing like this one.

Disc Binding

Picture of 3 discbound planner rings being used in a planner. A Close up shot. Part of an article: Planner binding options: find the right one for you.
  • PROS = Can be very smooth adding and removing pages. The rings don’t get in the way when writing so much. There are a variety of ring sizes to suit your planner size.
  • CONS = You do need a special hole puncher. The variety of available covers isn’t as great as other options.

For me this is the best planner binder option.

READ: Sustainable planning: Create your Own Eco Friendly Planner [discbound]

I find the disc binding system fits so nicely with all my planner binding needs.

Although you do need to buy the mushroom hole puncher, and the rings themselves, but once you have those you all set to make a planner binder that will last you years. You can just keep refilling it without having to buy anything new for the next year.

If you want to get some planner binder rings try this option…

BUY: Aluminum Planner Discs

Spiral Binding

  • PROS = You can easily make your own planner covers. Has more of a notebook feel. Lays flat when writing.
  • CONS = You can’t move pages around. You need equipment to do the binding or outsource the binding to a printing shop.

If you have in mind exactly what you want, and the pages you will use, this is one of the great planner binding options. Again there are custom planner binders that come spiral bound, so you can do a one time purchase.

If you want the DIY version there are two options for you.


Wire spiral binding is where you have an open wire that you feed the pages onto and then the two ends get pushed together with the binding machine and it creates the ring. It is the most popular type of spiral binding. If you want to try this method there are many tutorials on YouTube so that you can feel confident with what you are doing.


Picture of an open bullet journal notebook using coil spiral binding. Part of an article: Planner Binding Options: Find the Right One for YOU!

Coil spiral binding uses a different machine. The binding wire is a continuous spiral. It works by bundling all your pages together matching up the holes and then the machine feeds the coil spiral through the holes. This is the machine and method I use for spiral binding and I love doing it, it feels like magic. For this method though you also need a special crimping tool to cut the coil to the right size of your planner.

Perfect Binding

  • PROS = Can be an affordable option. Looks like a book. Is lightweight for on the go planning.
  • CONS = Often doesn’t lay flat. No option of moving pages around. If your planner gets heavy use, pages could drop out.

What is perfect binding?

It gathers the pages and uses glue to bind the spine of your book. Then a spine tape or soft cover is applied to the glue.

To be honest, I would say this is the least effective binding for a planner, as it doesn’t lay flat and so writing in it is hard. It’s more suited for a reading book that writing.

Book Binding

  • PROS = Very stable and durable binding. Can make it any size you want. Has a professional finish. Book binding is a art and skill if you want to take up a new hobby.
  • CONS = You can’t print single pages. You need to print double pages and then create signatures [book sections]. This can be an expensive option if you outsource the work. Can’t move pages around.

If you really are dead set on book binding, there are different options for you. You can do it yourself, I have done book binding before and it’s a beautiful finish, and something to be proud of. But getting the printing right can be tricky because you need to work out the order of your pages and make sure they are right when making your signatures.

Many would stitch the signatures together and then add on your book cover at the end. There are many tutorials on how it is done.

If you want to outsource this – a regular printing shop might not do it. You might need to find a local book bindery. Even then many have a minimum quantity when it comes to ordering books, so doing a one-off planner in a book format might be very expensive.



You can buy a ring binder, or disc binder quite easily for an instant setup. For spiral or book binding, you get the notebook feel, but either need to get the equipment to do it yourself or pay to outsource the binding.

Hopefully that put succinctly the planner binding options that we have discussed in this post. If you want to find more custom planner binders and options to diy them, I suggest going to some specific binding websites to get even more options that was mentioned here.

READ: Exploring The Best Planner Cover Supplies For Creative Crafters

READ: Choosing The Right Paper For Your Homemade Planner: No More Mistakes

READ: Affordable Planning: The Cost Of Making A Planner

So which is your best planner binder option?

Have you made some custom planner binders?

Let me know with a comment what you like or don’t like about planner binding options.

Thanks so much for being here today.


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