I’m really excited to share a new creative journal app that just hit the Apple App Store, Zinnia Journal. Zinnia Journal is a digital app for the iPad, that lets you create any type of layout, sketch, or type of notebook you want – all digitally and with a full suite of stickers, text styles, pre designed layouts, and even digital washi tape.
At first, you might be questioning why I am even talking about a digital journal when Bullet Journaling has classically be done in a physical notebook. The truth is, Bullet Journaling isn’t about where you do it. A notebook is just one type of vessel for all your thoughts, notes, and to-dos. You can practice the Bullet Journal Method in anything. I myself have used pocket notebooks, lined notebooks, and even tried using a digital notebook in the past.
A little background, I used to be a hardcore digital notetaker back in the day. This was before I even knew what bullet journaling was. It wasn’t a very creative outlet to be honest, but I knew where I was keeping my thoughts and notes. I love technology and utilizing anything that can help me be more organized. On top of being organized, it’s also important for me to be able to be creative in my journal. When I had the opportunity to try out a new app that was about to hit the app store, that was being designed for people who like to plan, bullet journal, and be super creative, I had to jump at the chance.
A small example of one of my original digital bujo ideas.
So let’s talk about how Zinnia Journal is changing the game for digital planning.
Taking a look into the app, Zinnia Journal is made up of 2 main parts.
The Journals. This is where you are creating and working inside of your notebooks.
The Studio. The Studio is your ability to look at the vast collection of items that you can use in your notebooks. It’s really amazing how much is available in this app now and even more amazing when you understand that it’s just going to keep getting bigger and better. All of the things you see in the studio are available for use in your notebooks. So let’s get stared at taking a look at the app.
Starting Your Notebook
One of the many things I like about this app is that it’s for all levels of planners. If you want to start from scratch, you can can pick your paper colors and style and go right into creating. If you prefer to have a journal set up for you, you have the option of selecting a predesigned and made journal. It’s a really great way to focus on your planning and tasks. You can always add to your notebooks as you go along.
If you choose to go with a blank notebook, you get a few options up front.
You can choose your paper types and color of your pages.
Blank Page, Dot Grid, Grid, Lined, Spread
You have some really cool notebook cover designs, too.
Once you are in the journal, it’s time to get started and explore.
At the top center of your screen you will see 4 main icons.
– Sticker Icon – for access to all the app stickers, text, and lettering
– Image Icon – to insert your own photos.
– Text Tool – fonts, colors, and styles
– Drawing Tools
The drawing tools in this app are a great feature. Zinnia is created by Pixite, who also have other cool drawing and illustration apps. The creative drawing space has 3 spots for customized drawing tools as well as an eraser. Under each of the tools, you have 8 drawing tools to select from.
– Technical Pen
– Brush Pen
– Paint Pen
Next to the drawing tool you have 7 color spots, a dynamic color chooser, and color picker.
Under the sticker icon is a world of amazing-ness. The Studio is FILLED wish a beautifully curated and thoughtfully stocked library. The Studio is broken down into categories.
Templates – This is a library of pre-designed layouts and spreads that you can add to your journal pages and fill out as you need. My favorite feature of these templates are that many of them are already designed with areas for typing. You simply click in the blue area and start typing with your keyboard. There are also mood trackers, monthly expenses and calendars.
Stickers – This is another gigantic library of some of the coolest stickers and visual add-ons for your planning and journaling needs. There is everything from basic shapes, to watercolor icons, and beautiful florals. There are also some really fun ones like Cute Sushi, House Plants (personal favorite), and travel stamps.
Some of the other categories in The Studio to check out:
And I’ve saved the best for last. DIGITAL WASHI TAPE
First, let me say that in my physical journal, I’m not big on washi tape. When I use it, it’s seldom – and the only one that I have are colored wood grain patterns. I also have a hard time finding washi tapes that fit my style.
The thing that makes me so excited about the digital washi tape collection in Zinnia, is that it’s dynamic. When you click on a washi tape, you get 4 pull points that let you extend the washi tape horizontally to make it longer, or vertically to make taller or thinner. The tape keeps its pattern as it grows. It’s just a really cool and special feature that I haven’t seen anywhere else . In other apps i’ve only seen static stickers that you can bring into your digital bujos. They are not as customizable as these. WIN!!
It’s been a really great experience getting to play around inside the Zinnia Journal app. I’ve really enjoyed experimenting with all the cool background cards, text options, and looking through creative, thoughtful, and fun stickers and washi tapes.
I’ve had a few people ask me if I am giving up my paper journal for digital. And rest a sure that I am not skipping out on my paper journal. But, I can see myself using this digital version for a few things. First, straight up inspiration. What I really love about digital art and planning is that it isn’t permanent. You can lay it down, move it around, and change it if you need to. There are so many elements, shapes, and items in this app that you can use. With the ability to move them around you can really try new things out to eventually try in your paper journal.
Another idea that I have been thinking about is using Zinnia as a digital scrapbook. It’s so easy to add your own photos, and mixing them with all the great cards and stickers in the app makes really wonderful pages. Custom creating a spread for yourself or someone else is so fun to do. The features don’t exist yet, but there has been a lot of chatter about future features that would let you export and make books of your own.
Zinnia Journal is a free download, so you can give it a try. Let me know what you think!
Zinnia Journal is a free download, with both free and paid options.