This post originally appeared on our sister site https://alifeofbalance.com
I recently purchased a Fancy Pants planner from STARTplanner for my daughter. My daughter has been reluctant to use a planner in the past, so when she showed an interest a couple of months ago I jumped at the chance and let her have a couple of months of my STARTplanner refill. She loved it and felt much more productive using it, so I purchased a mid-year complete Fancy Pants system for her which I will review here.
Shipping and Packaging
I did the pre-order for the planner on April 19. At that time, the website said that it would arrive by no later than June 8. On June 1, I got an e-mail saying that my order had shipped and provided the tracking number. A check of the tracking said that I would receive the package on Monday, June 5. I received several more emails from STARTplanner as the shipping status changed which made it extremely easy to keep informed. The package actually arrived on Saturday, June 3.
The order came in a special STARTplanner box with “Caution will increase productivity” printed on the outside. Once opened, the box had several more quote spots. Including “One Day – or – Day One YOU DECIDE” on the end, “Meet Your New Best Friend…“ on the inside cover, and once we got everything out “Goal Crushin’ Time Starts Now” on the bottom. All of these helped create excitement when opening it up.
In addition to the Fancy Pants planner system, I also purchased some add-ons for her and those were packaged on top of the planner in the box.
Then came the free fuel pad and the Fancy Pants binder, which was wrapped protectively in bubble wrap.
Finally, on the bottom, was a box containing the planner inserts. Inside that box was a card about caring for the planner, the dividers in a shrink wrap, and the planner pages in a shrink wrap. The box makes a good storage solution for the months that you aren’t carrying in your binder.
Overall, the packaging and unboxing experience was excellent. The only thing I felt was missing were good instructions on how to set up your planner and the company solved that a few days later when they emailed a setup video.
The Fancy Pants Binder
The binder is made of quality leather with gold hardware. The binder closes with a snap clasp to keep everything inside.
On the inside front cover, there are two business card slots on the top flap along with a short pocket. You can also slip things behind this flap for storage. There is also a zipper pocket giving you an area to put things that need to be secure. And finally, a full height pocket with the opening next to the rings.
On the inside back cover, there is a pen loop and a single full height pocket.
As with any ring-bound planner, you can choose the number of months you carry as well as how much additional information you put in. According to the company, the binder was designed to carry 1-4 months of daily pages at a time. Based on my daughter’s needs, she’s carrying all of the monthly dividers and two months of daily pages, along with the goals and plans sections and some self-created content.
The Daily Planner Pages
The Fancy Pants planner is a one-page-per-day planner. Along the outside edge of each page is a tracking area for water consumption, exercise, supplements, and calories in and out.
A majority of the page is taken up by two columns. One column contains the schedule and the other column contains the task list. Then across the very bottom of the page is a couple of lines for ideas, thoughts or “genius moments.”
The schedule column is always next to the rings in the binder. The day of the week is at the top of this column. It has half-hour time blocks from 5:30 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. printed along the left edge of the column. At the bottom of the column is a meal planning area including a place to make note of the price of any meals eaten out.
The task list column is always on the outside edge of the binder. This column starts with the date and a “Top Three” tasks area so you can keep the most important things at the top of the list. There are then 12 additional lines for to do items with a checkbox at the beginning of each line. At the bottom of this column is an area for quotes, gratitude, or other notes.
All in all, a very productive and efficient layout with several specialized areas that make life easier but don’t take up a lot of real estate. But, the daily pages are not where this planner really shines.
The Monthly/Weekly Pages
In addition to the daily pages, each month has several specialized sections. The month starts with a month-at-a-glance two-page spread on heavier card stock with a tab to make it easy to jump ahead when adding to the schedule.
Next comes the staying on track page which contains goal and health check information. The opposite page has a punch list which can be used as a running to do list or any other type of list you might need that month with a cards & gifts tracking section at the bottom of the page.
The final pages at the front of each month are a budget page and a notes page.
In addition to this front of the month section, the page opposite Sunday each week has a meal planner and weekly groceries.
As a nice little extra, they’ve added productivity and motivational quotes at the bottom of the task list on Mondays.
Goals and Plans
These sections are where the STARTplanner truly excels.
The Goals section walks you through exercises that start with big dreams and then break them down into goals and action steps. This section also includes a yearly financial overview and savings tracker.
In the Plans section, they’ve included a little bit of everything so that your planner really is the one place that contains everything you need.
There are pages for household cleaning which detail daily, weekly/biweekly, seasonal, and once a year tasks, with checkboxes so you can easily keep track of what’s been completed.
Next come some Project planning pages to help you plan out larger projects to don’t really fit in the goals section.
There is a section for Vacation planning where you can keep all the details in one easily managed location. A Holiday planning section helps keep everything running smoothly during that busy time of year.
Other pages include charity, medical bills tracker, movies, books, restaurant, events, meal planning, gifts, and passwords.
The final pages in this section are a checklist that goes through the goal planning process from setting your annual goals, assessing and adjusting quarterly, monthly review and weekly and daily planning.
In addition to the actual planner binder and pages, I also purchased some extras for my daughter. These included
- Sidekick Zipper Bag to hold pens, tape, and other supplies. This bag is great because it has an elastic band that allows it to be easily attached to the front or back cover of the planner.
- Washi Tape for attaching notes or just decorating the planner pages.
- Break-It-Up Dividers so that my daughter can add extra sections that she might need.
None of these were necessities, but they make things a little easier.
The Fancy Pants planner provides an exceptional system for setting goals and moving on to achieving them. I would recommend this planner to anyone looking for a one-page-per-day, ring-bound planner system.
STARTplanner has other planner styles available and if the Fancy Pants is any indication, I’m sure they are excellent. Their other offerings include:
- HUSTLE – one-day-at-a-glance, spiral-bound planner
- HUSTLE WEEKLY – weekly, spiral-bound planner
- LEGIT – weekly, perfect-bound student planner
- HAPPILY HITCHED – cloth-binding around spiral-bound wedding planner
Not sure which planner is for you? Check out these other posts for more information:
How to Choose the Best Planner for You
You can also find additional planner reviews in these posts.
Planner Review: Franklin Covey Two-Page-Per-Day
Planner Review: Living Well Planner
Planner Review: Simplified Planner by Emily Ley
Disclaimer: As stated above, I purchased this planner system at full price from the STARTplanner company. The company did not provide any products or discounts. They were not even aware that I was planning to review the planner once it arrived.
Kristy Dickerson says
You are the best! Rock it out!! xoxo – Kristy