Making Dividers part 2

So in my previous post I discussed making dividers. This is a follow-on post which will show you how to print cut and laminate them.

Option 1: Cardstock

Cardstocks are some beautiful designs and they can look really great. The easiest thing to do is to go to a local craft shop and have a look at different cardstocks. I recently went to Hobbycraft and picked up a beautiful Christmas themed pack for another project. Cardstock books have themes that will complement but you can mix and match with different card you find in the store. They’ll hopefully be a lot of choice. I am using my cardstock for a different project but it is so beautiful I may make some dividers with it at some point.

Now you make your divider you can take an existing template, if you have ones that came with your filofax/planner. If not you can take a template of a page and draw round it and add a tab if you want one. You can also draw one onto the card with a ruler and have the outline that way. Once you have a template to follow simply cut them out.


Option 2: Printing from Publisher

If you are printing on a personal sized template page to get crop marks you’re going to want to make sure you have crop marks selected, you are also going to need to onset your pages a little to make sure they line up. My previous printing post has a very good step by step guide, so please go and read that one to set it up properly.

If you are working on a4 paper it should be really easy to print. Just select to print double sided.

Ctrl + P > Make sure landscape is selected > change print one sided to Manual 2 sided Printer flip sheets on long side. 

Printing is printer specific so it’s best to experiment a little with how your printer prints thinks. To save ink you can do this in black and white or work on just putting shapes or words on a publisher page – to save wasting ink.

Once printed it’s time to cut them. I recommend a stanley knife, cork board ruler and a cutting mat. It’s cheaper than a investing in a guillotine. Now you want to have a nice clean edge without any white on it, so it’s best to place the ruler on the white next to the divider and cut. I normally prefer to rest my ruler onto the colour/printed image and cut away from it, but with dividers it’s better to see the print so you can see if you’ll get any white showing, rather than not trim enough. It can be hard to tidy up with a stanley knife as I’ve found it tears, so it’s a good idea to get it done in one cut.



Now is the fun part, well it’s not really fun, I just find laminating therapeutic/fun, I don’t know why. I got my laminator on Amazon. The one I got had a recommend retail price of £50, I got it on sale so it was much cheaper than it was listed on at the moment (I got it for less than £20, it’s currently at £26.50 19/12/2015). There’s nothing special about this one it doesn’t have a heat setting to turn it up or down or do anything fancy. It works well but you can probably get a cheaper one, this was just a really good deal when I got it. I use Textet Laminator Pounches, I really like this set as a starter set. They have a bunch of different sizes so don’t have to buy a ton of different packs to get a variety for different project or wait to have enough to laminate. These have a nice thickness to them and they make my dividers feel sturdy but don’t add loads of bulk to my planner.

I recommend working on your cutting mat. Place the laminating pouch on the mat and open it – they can be quite prone to causing static so it can be a bit fiddly. Place your items on the sheet, you need a good balance between filling it to not waste the laminating sheet and allowing a gap between the images. It’s good to have them on a cutting mat because it’ll limit the chances of the divider moving when you pick it up – and risk them sticky. It happened with my sticky notes.

Plug your laminator in and allow it to reach temperature. When ready gentle slide the sealed edge towards the edge of the cutting mat. Lift the mat and feed the sealed edge into the laminator. Keep the mat steady as the sheet feeds into the machine. Went until all the laminator has gone through before removing the mat – this will save dividers moving. Once laminated you can leave the item to cool again.




Now you can cut your dividers again. My laminator is good enough that I don’t have to leave a sealed edge so I try to minimise that as much as possible, but it’s personal taste. I recommend leaving an edge for my reuseable sticky notes for cleaning them. If you did your dividers the same size as pages leaving the edge with a laminator will make them a bit bigger. Once cut you can punch them. If you’ve not labelled your tabs a great way to keep them usuable is to write on them with a pen like this. You can wipe it off and rename the tab later if you wish.

This is my current front page and it makes me smile!


Making Dividers part 1

I think dividers are the biggest way you can express yourself with a planner. They can really bring your personality into your planner. This is just a blog post about how I made mine, I use a graphic design package to make them and I go a little fancy to tie them together. It’s a great way for you to personalise them and add your name etc, but if you are not so confident using design software, skip to ‘Option 3’ and follow from the publisher selection. If you really don’t want to print your own.

History plays such an important role with me that I had to bring that into my planner. The first thing I did was a tried to find images I liked, most of these were images I had already. Most of these come from previous google searches, so I collected them and I opened them up in Gimp (or publisher if you are following Option 3).

Option 1: Cardstock

By far the easiest way to make your own dividers is with cardstock, it’s the one most people do. I wanted mine to be a little more personalised so I made mine like below. However these are still a great option. I will discuss how to make these in part two, as it fits in more with cutting and laminating then it does with creating and printing.


Option 2: Gimp 

Gimp stands for GNU Imagine Manipulation Program. It works like Adobe only it’s completely free for a full program (or at least it was when I downloaded it was free for a complete program). If you know how to do this you can skip this tutorial and go to my cutting and laminating post instead.

The pictures themselves don’t really have a theme to them so I wanted to try and tie them together a bit more. I googled and picked a nice looking vintage old paper texture. This will be a base where I’ll ghost the images on top of. Now I made a decision that I did not want the traditional tab on them. I love these images so much that I didn’t want them in a particularly order in case I changed the order and pick a different one for a front cover.

Firstly, create a blank Canvas.

File > New > Switch px to mm

Width: 95

Height: 171 (if you want tabs, add an extra 5-6mm on to these numbers, there are just for personal size. You can also generally add an extra 2mm or so if you want your divider to be bigger than your normal page).

It doesn’t really matter what background colour you have. I normally leave it on white.

Next you need to copy and page your old vintage this will act as a background. You’ll get a new layout pop up in the layout option but it’ll be called a floating layer selection, you need to change this to layer.

Right click the Floating Layer Selection > To New Layer


Repeat this step again for the image you want. Then I’m going to ghost the top image (in my case a DDR Map of Berlin).

Layout toolbar > Mode: 

You’ll get a bunch of different options that come up. Play around until you find the one you like best. Once you are happy with it you need to merge down the layers.


Layer > Merge down

Now if you wanted to add tabs, you have a view options you could do. You could either leave the image as it is, print it out and then cut the tabs by eye. Or you could set up guides to space out the tabs and then cut away the image. You can write on them if you want as well or if you want to potentially change their purpose you can leave them blank. I am in the process of ordering some sticky tabs so my dividers can be repostionable. Once you’ve added your tabs, if you are going to you can now copy and paste this and put it into publisher. I really like publisher for printing my documents as I love the print preview and crop marks. It’s a very user friendly piece of software

Option 3: Publisher

In my previous posts with publisher I have worked on personal paper, if you have a white divider that would be difficult to cut out without a guide – you’ll need crop marks; follow this tutorial to get your dividers ready for printing. If not I recommend working on an A4 page so you don’t have to worry about printing both sides the back side precisely.

File > New > A4 landscape

For once I’m going to leave the margins on as I don’t want to run the risk of my printer not printing part of the image (I don’t have a colour laser printer so I took these to University to print so I wanted to make sure they wouldn’t screw up). Copy and paste the image into your a4 page. Now you can fit up to 3 personal sheets onto one a4. So you can put at least one more if not two. I decided to space them out and just do two.


Next add a new sheet and copy your original vintage paper template to this page. Make sure it’s large enough that it will cover your divider images.


That concludes the tutorial on how to make them. Next post will be about printing and laminating them.