October’s coming up and you know what that means? Wedding season and Christmas season are coming soon! In light of that, I’m going to be sharing a series of DIY lettering tutorials for gifts. I’ve been hard at work experimenting with different techniques and materials, and I can’t wait to share it all with you.

But that’s all next week. Before we get into that, I want to show you you I organise lettering projects, so I don’t get swamped — and you don’t too!

P.S. You can use this for any craft project. Mine are just largely lettering-related 😉

If you’re like me, you probably already have a few things pinned as potential DIY gifts for friends and family this gifting season.

This is what happens every year for me: I make a list of all the people I’m gifting. I fill in what I want to give them. And then I procrastinate till the last two weeks before Christmas and scramble to finish DIYing.

In recent years, I’ve found myself giving up and resorting to (gasp!) buying gifts at the last minute. There’s nothing wrong with buying, especially if you’re pressed for time. But I always felt like I was ‘cheating’ since I had long planned what I wanted to make, and only procrastination (and an overestimation of my skills and/or time) killed the project.

So this year, I’m determined to organise the crap outta this gifting thing and here’s how it works:

1. Gift List


My starting point is the same. I make a list of friends and family, and I list down their gifts. Since my items tend to be small, I like to make a few for variety — plus it makes the package look less sad!

2. Master Task List


Next is my Master Task List table. I write down all the baby steps each gift takes in the main column. Beside it, I also have a column for how long it should take. I often paint or letter for the blog, and sometimes have to wait for the paint to dry. The idea is that while waiting for that, I can refer to this list — since I already have the supplies out! — and use that downtime well instead of surfing Facebook for the nth time.

The column on the left is for checking off whether I’ve done it. It’s pretty wide ‘cause sometimes, I make more than one piece of the same thing. For example, I’m making cards for my pen pals! I’m creating 3-4 designs, digitising them, and printing a few copies of each. The additional width of this column allows me to put more than one task dot there to be checked off. Pretty simple huh?

3. Project Timeline


And the last thing in my bullet journal… A timeline spread! I’m absolutely horrible at working on something across a long period of time, so I’m hoping this would help.

I modified this from Jessica’s work flow chart, where she color codes different aspects of her work and the shading shows when she’s busy. For me, it simply shows when I’m otherwise busy with work, blog or personal life.

From there, I assign myself time to work on each project. Red lines indicate the ‘due date’ of each project. Family gifts are by the 25th, but friend gifts can be given as early as the second week of December, depending on when we’re all free so — it pays to start early!

4. Shopping List

Of course, not everything can be found at home. I still need to buy supplies, especially since I’m lettering on more than paper surfaces this season! So… I’ve a shopping list. I normally plonk down everything in a standard rapid log in my main journal but I was inspired by Kara (again!) and her sidekick video.

Following Kara’s example, I made a calendex style shopping list in the back of my tiny Muji sidekick. I had to modify it a little to fit the space (it’s 3.5” by 4.9”) but it essentially categorises my shopping by store (or potential store) so it’s easier on me while shopping!

And that’s how I’m organising gift projects this year. You’re more than welcome to copy and modify my spreads for your own journal, but if counting boxes just isn’t your thing — I’ve got you covered too.

How do you organise lettering projects?

Let me know in the comments if you have a similar system set up! I love to experiment.