Thursday, 17 April 2014

Filofax Dashboard - How to make & What with! - Filofax Friday - Week 15

I have been receiving a few comments recently about dashboards so I thought I would make that a subject for Filofax Friday! The questions have been:

  1. What are dashboards?
  2. What are dashboards used for?
  3. How can I make a dashboard?
  4. What can I use as a dashboard?

So I thought this week I would address those questions and share my ideas for making dashboards and the things that I have used.

Not everyone chooses to have a dashboard but many people do. I am one of those that does have one but it is only there to serve the purpose of 'prettyness' when I open up my Filofax. Other people use theirs for adhering sticky notes to and also for storing their sticky notes for use out and about. Some people also store washi tape in this way too.

You can pretty much add or use anything in your Filofax all you have to do is hole punch it and off you go. If you don't have a six hole punch I have a tutorial on how you can punch holes using a two hole punch right at the bottom of this blog post.

Notes on laminating and laminators

Laminators serve two purposes as far as I am concerned. Firstly they protect anything you want to use in your Filofax making it more durable, especially card and paper where turning it and using it every day can make it become very dog eared. Secondly if something has a laminated or glossy surface sticky notes and washi tapes with come off easier. Please do consider this when thinking about the purpose of your dashboard. If you do want to use it for sticky notes you may want to use something that has this type of surface.

Please note: I am not suggesting that you rush out there and buy a laminator so please don't think I am. They are jolly handy to have around though and if you love your Filofaxes as much as I do they might be worth the purchase for you as you will be able to make your own dividers and page markers too. Laminators come in various price ranges so you might be able to find something to suit your budget. Remember though that you will also need to factor in purchasing the laminator pouches. I know our local Staples and office supply shop will laminate items for you for a relatively small fee so it may be more cost efficient to just get items laminated in that way rather than having the outlay of the equipment and lets face it who doesn't need an excuse to go and browse the pens etc huh!

Dash Board Ideas

So here are my ideas on what to use as dashboards. These are just my ideas so I am sure there are others out there. If you have any suggestions please do let me know as I would love to hear your thoughts.

I think photos are a lovely addition to a planner especially if you work outside the home or travel a lot as you can take your friends and family along with you. I would reccommend that you have or make a copy of your photograph though as if this is precious to you, you probably want to save a copy without it being hole punched. A 6x4 is a pretty standard print size here in the UK and whilst it is not a perfect fit, it is near enough for me to use in my personal size and definitely so in my pocket with a little bit of trimming. In the UK I know that you can pretty much get most print sizes so if you are an A5 size user you will definitely be able to get a print done that matches perfectly for you! Photos work great for sticky notes but I would laminate them for that extra durability and they would look even better if you covered the back with some nice paper or scrapbook paper.

For me postcards are the same sort of thing as a photograph and you can buy some really nice ones now. A perfect way to remember that dream holiday!

Acetate is great as a dashboard and in fact I like them for page markers too. They are great because they are fairly sturdy on their own and have the added bonus of being transparent so you can see what is underneath. I actually used a piece of packaging to make my Christmas themed one. You can buy acetate already with a design on it or you can print onto it too. Staples and office supply shops will do this for you too for a relatively small fee.

Leading on from the acetate above packaging can be great too! Keep an eye out of packaging that you like. All you have to do is cut it down to size and you have something pretty darn cool to work with.

I took a load of scrap bits of paper and other ephemera that was lying around my desk, stuck it all together and then trimmed it down to size and it made a rather lovely dashboard it I do say so myself. I laminated it too.

Washi tapes
In the same way that I stuck a lot of scraps together you could take a piece of paper, cover it in your favourite washi tapes, cut it down to size, laminate, hole punch and jobs a good 'un don't you think?

OK so hands up if you love your stickers sooooo much that you don't always want to use them but just hoard them instead. Yeah thought so, same as me! Well if your stickers are flat why not just take the sheet exactly as it is, laminate and hole punch and trim if neccessary? That is a very lovely dashboard if I do say so myself and most of the sticker sheets that I have are actually the same length as the personal so very little work needs doing and they are transparant so you can see layers underneath. That makes me so giddy with excitement I just can't tell you!

Does your used notebook have a lovely cover on it? Before you get rid cut off the cover, trim it, hold punch and ta-dah! If you buy a notebook that you love just for the cover to use in this way you can always use the paper in your Filofax too - don't waste it!

Buy Them
OK so if all else fails, you can't find anything, you are not all that crafty you can always buy one! Where from? Well Etsy is a great place to start, just search for Filofax dashboards and loads will come up. As you know I sell my own artwork as dashboards in my Etsy shop here. My other favourite shop is Filomania on Etsy who has some lovely paper designs to choose from.


Hey no surprises what the homework is this week huh! This week I want you to make your own dashboard using one of the ideas from above (or your own ideas).

Remember it is not compulosry, no one will know if you have done it or not. I am just setting prompts / tasks for you to help and motivate you in this series. Pick and choose each week whether you would like to do the homework or not it is entirely up to you! If you ever need to ask or clarify anything with me please do get in touch through any of the social media platforms. Sometimes it takes a while but I do reply to each and every message that is left for me.



This week's download is... a little bit of artwork from me so that you can print it off and laminate it and use it as a dashboard. I have kept it really simple to appeal to many people. It is the basis of an up and coming summer range of dashboards that I will shortly be selling in my Etsy shop.

The download contains a dashboard for you to print at home in A5, personal and pocket size. You will need software that can 'unzip' the folder to release the files as both pdf and jpeg.  To download the files please click here. Please note that the inserts that I am offering as freebies as part of this series are different to the ones that I sell, so if you have already purchased a set of my inserts these are in addition for you. If you haven't purchased any of my inserts and would like to or just have a nose at them you can view them in my Etsy shop here. Please note: These inserts are entirely free and a gift from me and only the inserts provided are free, I say this because I know some people might prefer one of the other designs that I offer but it is only the ones in the freebie set on offer at this time.

Have a great week and a really lovely Easter!

Remember your planner will only work for you and help keep you organised and on track if you use it. 


  1. Thank you for the free dash boards. I think I will use it as a background and add things to it.

    1. You are very welcome. That is exactly what I am doing too lol! Watch this space :)

  2. Just watched your video on Youtube and then came here for my free dashboard - this download seems like a perfect one to try out on my OHP acetate! Yay - thanks

  3. Great tutorial!! I didn't see a link to the download but you have inspired me to give it a try! Thanks so much!!

  4. I just got my first filofax and have been looking for inspiration as well as how to actually achieve the look, and this post is perfect! Thank you :)

    Tara | Headline Beauty xox

  5. I've been obsessing over everyone else's dividers and dashboards and your post made me realize I can *print my own* from my own photography! What a great tutorial. :)

  6. Thank you so much!! I enjoyed your video and you ideas!!!!

  7. I found a tip to use an iron and parchment paper to laminate minus a machine. Just sandwhich the laminating pouch between parchment paper and press. It has worked fairly well for me. I love your artwork and dashboard ideas!