A Look @: The Hobonichi Planner


I'm going to be fun this year

The Hobonichi Planner (Techo) has been around for years, and it comes in three different sizes. But it's more than just a planner - it's a record of your daily life, and a vessel for your creativity, designed to serve as an "anything" book you can (and should) use every day. It was translated into English for the first time this year, and the 2014 edition of the planner is now available for purchase.

This new planner boasts a few improvements from this year's. It features global holidays, a snazzier-looking cover, and a "Coming Up!" page at the beginning of each month to jot down your outlook of the coming weeks. All of these elements combined with the features the Techo already had make for a solid book that I see myself brutalizing lovingly as soon as December begins.

Hobonichi Techo
Hobo Nikkan Itoi Shinbun and Arts&Science
Release: October, 2013
MSRP: ¥2,500 [BUY]

As I mentioned before, the Techo isn't just a planner. It's a book that you can do anything with. If you want to use it as a journal for your thoughts, a scrapbook, doodle book, recipe book, or scratch pages for lists and notes, it all works out. The pages can take it - they're made to withstand the creativity of its users, as you can see in the promo video above.

Since the book doesn't actually start up until December, I messed around with some of the memo pages to see how they handled various materials I have lying around in my apartment. The only things I didn't try were pastels and watercolors, but I suspect they would have been just fine. Nothing bled through the pages, because they're designed to not absorb anything to begin with. It's fantastic.

Features I love most:

  • Flexible spine makes it so the book stays open on any page you flip to
  • Not one, but three separate spaces where you can jot down appointments, deadlines, meetings, and other scheduled events that are apart from the actual day-to-day pages
  • Graph layout on each day's page to maximize your use of limited space
  • Encouragement to just paste another layer or pocket to any page you run out of space on, because it's your book and you can do whatever you want

I can't really name any drawbacks to the Techo. It's kind of a dream come true for me, since I carry around both an agenda and a journal which I use as a day-to-day book for doodling, writing down whatever I need to remember later, making lists, or drafting editorials I plan to publish online later (ah, the freelance life). This one book would replace both of those, and it takes up less space. If I buy a case for it, I could even (neatly) carry around an arsenal of craft supplies with it and still save on space.

I made a video (located at the top of this post) to accompany this review. I'd also like to mention that as I finally begin to use the planner, I'll periodically update whoever wants to know on how the thing is holding up and whether I'm still happy and excited about it. I mean, I'm the kind of person who color-codes her notes and even has color-coded sticky tabs for easy indexing. And I like scrapbooking. And making lists. And scribbling things with different colored pens. And this one little book will pretty much let me combine all of these things, plus function as a planner. There is no losing.

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Hobonichi Techo reviewed by Kristina Pino


Kristina Pino
Kristina PinoContributor   gamer profile

Kristina is a freelance photographer and writer from Miami now moved to Japan. She's a hardcore nerd culture enthusiast, Disney fan, sunflower admirer, and book slinger. Tweet her @geekerydo. F... more + disclosures



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