An Interview with Chelley Darling!

July 24, 2015

Hey dolls!  Today I have one of my favorite planner geeks, Chelley Darling!
1. What planner/planners do you have? Are there any you want to get?

Oh that is a question I almost don't want to answer - lol! I am a collector for sure. I'm definitely not sharing a specific number, though I've been destashing and parting with a lot of the ones which don't quite make my heart sing any more. I'd rather they go to a loving planner home. With that being said, I do use, or have a plan to use, all of the planners that I own. I think the best way to answer that question is to provide a recent collection photo of nearly all of my personal-sized planners:

I have since parted the medium lilac kikki.K and my small lilac kikki.K. 
I do own some of the more rare planners, including:
- A Taylor floral Forever New from 2014 (along with the matching pencil pouch)
- A sparkly gold Forever New from 2014
- A mint die-cut A5 Forever New from 2014
- A bright floral Molly & Mimi from 2014
- An A5 Gold Filofax
- A one-of-a-kind pocket Filofax called Roses:

And yes I realize how lucky I am to have some of these!

As for planners that I want, I'd have to say a White A5 Color Crush, some of the kikki.K's from 2013 and earlier, and the new Fluoro Pink Patent Compact Filofax.

2. What planners are you using at the moment?

I am not a spiral-bound planner type of girl, and I only use less-than-letter-sized week-on-two-pages layouts for planning certain projects, not my entire life. I've just recently come close to completing a DIY letter-sized disc-bound planner that I'm fondly calling my "Shine Darling" planner. (I'm feeling planner peace!) She's my command center for everything in my life. I also use over a dozen regular old white binders for organizing paperwork, notes, plans, and printouts. Being a creative, I have a LOT of projects in the works. Being a planner girl is the only way that I'm able to turn ideas into action steps. My 6-ring binders are used for managing certain projects that I want to be especially pretty and fun to use, or that I can most easily manage without relying on letter-sized paper. I also use Wunderlist to manage and prioritize tasks and lists and collect brain dumps, which are then turned into plans in my planner! :)

3. What are your favorite planner brands?

Color Crush, Forever New, Molly & Mimi from Target-Australia, Happiness Planner, GettoWorkBook (if only that layout worked for me!) and, most recently, all of the tools and accessories from the Happy Planner, Arc, and Levenger

4. Where do you draw inspiration from for your planner?

Nothing gives me the most inspiration for my planners than when I'm just curled up in bed, planner in hand, with a few boxes and bins of supplies close by. Using what I have in new ways, to create what I need, is one of my favorite things about having a planner. I try to avoid taking inspiration from other planner girls, as inspiring as they are. We all have our own style and tastes, so finding a way to express yourself without necessarily mimicking others is a large part of your individual planning journey. I do keep a list of improvements for my planners that I work on whenever I can, and I'm always jotting down new ideas, or setting aside pieces of paper/ephemera/washi, etc after thinking how perfect they'd look in a certain planner theme. In general, when setting up a new planner, focus on the foundation first, and then move onto the decoration.

5. Do you have any favorite planner bloggers?

Oh dear, I don't really follow blogs. I just don't have the time. I've glanced at a few and loved their layout and content. I've read the most posts from MissTrenchCoat, who's a productivity guru after my own heart.,, and all have beautiful content. I'm sure I'm forgetting many of my friends - I'm so sorry! I spend most of my free social media time in Facebook groups, most recently in my own Planner Darlings group, where I'm able to connect with and help my followers one-on-one - something I've been wanting to do for a long time. :) 

6. What are 5 things for your planner that you absolutely can't leave the house without?

I actually do not carry my planners outside of the house apart from my pocket gold Sugar Paper planner. I've read too many horror stories about expensive and rare planners being lost, stolen, or damaged. I work from home, (a lot), and being a single girl in her mid-20's, I don't have a lot that I need on the go that I can't access on my phone. Modifying your question a bit, some planner supplies I can't live without: sticky notes, my new Levenger Circa 123 punch and Happy Planner discs, a wide palette of colorful pens and highlighters, listpads, and Project Life cards.

7. What is the current theme for your planner pages?

It's been a few weeks since I decorated a week-on-two-pages layout. I'm probably going to be using the gorgeous flamingo theme from July's The Planner Society Kit for the next layout.

8. What would you describe your planner decoration style as?

A wide variety, due to the design teams I'm lucky to be a part of, but I always seem to resort back to pastels and bright rainbows with hints of gold, when left to my own inspiration. I don't have many planner stickers, so I'm not really a planner sticker girl. I have my crafting roots in card-making, so I use a lot of untraditional stamps and techniques. In adjectives: free, messy, creative, pastel, rainbow, happy, pretty, gold accents, occasional doily

9. How did you first discover your love of planners?

I've been using lists and binders and notebooks since I could write. I kept journals when I was very young, but stopped until around the age of 20, and I've been journaling semi-regularly ever since. I've always used productivity systems, and even created my own gamified life system at one point. It wasn't until the summer of 2013 that I discovered Filofaxes and 6-ring planners. I was watching Youtube videos, researching studying techniques for nursing school. The nursing school passion was kind of lackluster, and it was quickly replaced with my passion for planners. I'm grateful to have built a business around something I've been passionate about since I could write, and I have many more planner projects and businesses coming in the future.

10. What is your favorite thing about Live. Love. Planners.?I love how active you are in the community and how you're always coming out with new ways for planner addicts to use and have fun with their planners! Please keep it up! :)

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Chelley Darling is a creative entrepreneur and coach with a burning passion for productive pretty planning. A member of the Webster's Pages Color Crush and The Planner Society Kit design teams, her dream is to launch her own product lines for planners. She's an outspoken advocate for mental health awareness, especially with the areas of depression and anxiety, and works to encourage others to use creativity and planners as therapeutic aids.

Planner-Lover, Paper Addict:
Spreading happiness through creativity,
and bringing daydreams to life.

Design, Dev, Coaching & Consulting:
Helping planner girls shine since 2015
Chelley Darling EtsyChelley Darling YouTubeChelleyDarling Instagram ChelleyDarling on Facebook
Thank you so much for coming doll!  Remember, if you are interested in taking part in an interview here on Live Love Planners, shoot me an email at and I'll respond as soon as possible!  Thanks for reading!

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