Home "Shady Talk" Misadventures in Bullet Journaling #2: Ghosting & Journal Sizes

Misadventures in Bullet Journaling #2: Ghosting & Journal Sizes

by Aleen @ Lampshade Reader

Misadventures in Bullet Journaling #2 Graphic

In the previous edition of Misadventures in Bullet Journaling, I briefly spoke about “ghosting” with certain pens/markers in the Scribbles that Matter journal, I will delve on that topic more in this edition and also of the sizes of the journals themselves.

Choose a size of journal that fits your needs

While I was shopping around for a journal in the beginning stages of bullet journaling, the broad range of sizes confused me. Especially when they came in A5, A4 and so forth. Those types of sizes are measured in the International Standard Paper Sizes.

Sizes Inches
A0 33.1 × 46.8
A1 23.4 × 33.1
A2 16.5 × 23.4
A3 11.7 × 16.5
A4 8.3 × 11.7
A5 5.8 × 8.3
A6 4.1 × 5.8
A7 2.9 × 4.1
A8 2.0 × 2.9
A9 1.5 × 2.0
A10 1.0 × 1.5

The most common sizes for dot grid journals are A5 and A4. Here’s an actual picture of the size difference between the two. My generic dot grid journal on the right is  8.5 x 11 inches, so not quite an A4.

side to side journals

Left: A5 Right: A4/8.5 x 11 inches


An A4, like the Scribbles That Matter is great for those who do weekly spreads. It’s small and compact. I did do the weekly spread thing the first time I started out but found that it did not suit my needs.

Weekly spread bullet journaling

Weekly spread


I touched on the ghosting (or bleed through) on my previous post, but that was for the Scribbles that Matter journal. After I got the larger dot grid journal, I didn’t use the Ohuhu in this and just stuck to sharpie fine point markers. Unfortunately, that still ghosted through the other side of the paper. The positive side to all that is that the generic dot grid journal that I bought was super affordable.

bleed through example dot grid journal

Ghosting in the generic dot grid journal with sharpie pens

If you do insist on using markers be prepared to skip some pages. I mainly use ink pens and colored pencils right now. Personally, I don’t mind eating up some of my pages, but it kind of hinders the overall design.

In the next edition I’ll elaborate more on spreads and trackers that I have found to be a great motivator. Which, in turn, speaks to my love for lists.

List of supplies mentioned in this article:

8.5 x 11 inch Dot Grid Journal

Scribbles that Matter A5 Journal

Sharpie Markers

Ohuhu Art Markers

Prismacolor Colored Pencils

What size journal do you use? Or which do you think will you try first?

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Aleen @ Lampshade ReaderGayathriJovitaMary KirklandBrittany Recent comment authors

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I use an A4 size as well and I think it suits me perfectly. And most of the pens bled until I found the staedtler triplus fineliner. They are worth every cent and the number of shops I visited looking for them.


I’ve enjoyed these journaling posts Aleen. It’s always wonderful to see what works and doesn’t work.

Mary Kirkland

I’ve never done this but I enjoy seeing what others are able to do with them.


Have you Tried the Sharpie Art Pens instead of the Thin Tip Sharpie markers? They have similar tips but the are pens are meant for coloring and writing so they barely bleed at all. I use them all the time. They ghost through regular printer paper a little bit but not my journal pages (I don’t know the thickness of my pages). My journal is 7″ x 9″ and is the perfect size for me, but it doesn’t have enough pages. The packaging said it was 60 pages, but in reality it was 30 front and back pages. So I… Read more »

Tanya @ Girl Plus Books

This is such a neat feature, Aleen. Even though I don’t Buford, I still find it so interesting and I always enjoys seeing evveryone’s layouts and supplies and the different things that work for them.

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