How to choose your 2021 diary

woman sat at desk, writing in her diary

2020 was a sad year and effectively a write-off for most, so many people are feeling a glimmer of hope when it comes to the thought of a fresh new year.

What better way to plan your new year out than with a beautiful diary?

In this article, we’ll walk you through how to choose the best diary size and layout for your lifestyle and requirements.

Then, the hard part will be choosing from our stunning range of 2021 Paperblanks diaries.

Choosing a diary size

First things first, you’ll need to decide on the size of your 2021 diary. Consider the following points:

  • Will you be carrying your diary with you, or will it live on your desk at work or home?
  • What will you be using your diary for?
  • How large is your handwriting?

Pocket diary

Our pocket diaries are approximately 100 x 140 mm (4 x 5.5″) and are named “pocket” diaries for a reason!

These diaries are so handy for carrying everywhere with you, being small and light enough for any bag or pocket.

Due to its size, this diary isn’t ideal to use as a full-on daily journal; however, it’s perfect for scheduling events, using as a dream journal, or tracking things such as pregnancy, weight loss, health symptoms, or water consumption.

Slim diary

Our slim diaries are approximately 95 x 180 mm (3.75 x 7.1″) and, much like the pocket diaries, are designed to take up as little space as possible.

Narrower in width and longer in length than the pocket diary, the slim Paperblanks diary can also fit easily inside a handbag, rucksack or case — for notetaking on the go.

Medium diary

Our medium diaries are approximately 130 x 180 mm (5.1 x 7.1″), offering you more space for planning or journaling than the slim or pocket size, while still being portable if you need to take your diary out with you now and then.

If you’re buying a diary as a gift, then this one may be your best bet — not too small and not too big!

Large diary

Our large diaries are approximately 180 x 230mm (7.1 x 9.1″) and ideal for use on a desk, where you can refer back to it daily.

You can use this size of diary for anything; from planning a busy work or social life to journaling, making notes about your day, and more.

A larger diary may also be beneficial if you have large handwriting or poor vision.

A diary, pencil and mobile phone on a desk

Choosing a diary layout

Once you’ve chosen your diary size, you need to choose a diary layout.

The diaries in our range tend to come in a choice of four layouts, which are horizontal week-to-view, verso week-to-view, vertical week-to-view, and day-to-view.

Horizontal week-to-view

The horizontal layout spreads the days of the week out over two pages, with the first days of the week on one page and the rest on the opposite page.

If you’d like a fair amount of space for writing in your diary but to see a whole week at once, then this is the layout for you.

Verso week-to-view

The verso layout features the days of the week on the left-hand page and a notes page on the right; perfect for those of you who want to use their diaries for multiple purposes.


As you might expect, this layout features one day per page, with Saturday and Sunday on a page together.

If you want to use your diary as a journal or in any way that means you need to make lots of notes, then this is the best layout for you.

Vertical week-to-view

This option utilises columns and breaks each day down into times, which can be very helpful for planning meetings and social events.

Which diary will you choose for next year? Let us know in the comments!

Lucy is our lead editor and has been passionate about stationery since childhood. She has a particular fondness for rollerball and calligraphy pens and is a keen advocate of snail mail.

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