Posted in Do-It-Yourself (DIY) Projects, General, Happy Planner, HappyNichi

What is a “HappyNichi”?

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Interesting question in the Happynichi Inspiration Facebook Group

In the Facebook Group that I recently created, HappyNichi Inspiration, one of the members asked what a HappyNichi was and I was quite intrigued.  Immediately, two answers came to mind.  But I’ll get into that in a moment.

Hobonichi Planning Systems

Although the Hobonichi Techo Planning system has been around for nearly twenty years, I didn’t really start noticing them until a few weeks ago when some videos of people planning in them were recommended to me on YouTube. (I’ve mentioned it in quite a few times in my own videos but I watch more YouTube videos that actual television).  Specifically, the videos recommended were of the Hobonichi Weeks Planner system which is slim and sleek and oh-so-pretty.  It’s quite different from the Happy Planner system that I use for planning as it’s in a book bound system.

The Hobonichi planner systems seems to skirt the line between a traditional planner system that is organized in monthly, weekly, and/or daily layouts with the freedom of a bullet journal and the ability to create your own designs. Made with Tomoe paper, the thinness lends itself to a slim, compact design although I have heard that some pens might not work as well with the Tomoe paper due to it’s slickness.

Happy Planner System

When I think of the Happy Planner system, I think of it as a ‘traditional’ planner system. To be fair, I think that might be my own interpretation of ‘traditional’ since from my perspective, that’s the planner system that I’m used to using. Broken down by months, the Happy Planner system has various layout styles that include horizontal, vertical, dashboard, lists, and academic.

What makes the Happy Planner system different is that unlike most planners that are on bound, coiled or in a spiral system, the Happy Planner uses the disc system. This makes the planner very functional and customizable because you can take pages, dividers, and even entire sections out of your planner and add in new elements. I’ve been quite enamored of the Happy Planner system for a while and took the plunge in purchasing my own in October 2018.

Two Worlds Collide

When searching YouTube, I found that the first “Fauxbonichi” video was loaded in May 2014. A Fauxbonichi is a planner system inspired by the Hobonichi system of your choice (I’ll have another blog post about the various systems) that ISN’T a Hobonichi – hence the use of “Faux”. A Fauxbonichi can be made of anything from bullet journals, notebooks, or paper in a binder (the only limitation is your imagination). When Happy Planner released their Half Sheet Happy Notes, that opened the door to the Hobonichi colliding with the Happy Planner system.

All at once, you can create spreads/layouts in a portable yet useful system. Slimmer than a Classic Happy Planner but taller than the Happy Planner Mini, the Half Sheet Happy Notes provided more freedom to mimic the Hobonichi while maintaining functionality and the ability to customize.

Happynichi/Fauxbonichi/BujoNichi – ALL the Nichis!

A Happynichi can be a fauxbonichi, bujonichi, or DIYnichi. I’m also of the opinion that all fauxbonichis can be considered happynichis even if they aren’t on the disc-bound system. I believe that if your planner makes you happy (and it’s designed, however loosely, in the Hobonichi style) then you have a happynichi. But that’s just my opinion.

Check out my HappyNichi Video Playlist on YouTube!



2 thoughts on “What is a “HappyNichi”?

  1. Hi Johanna! Thanks for this article, I found it very helpful – and I like your definition of “Happynichi” at the end 🙂 I have seen some Hobonichi-inspired discbound paper inserts for sale on Etsy and other places, described as “fauxbonichi” and “happynichi”, and was wondering whether there is any problem with this from a copyrighting perspective. Do you have any thoughts on this? Thanks!

    1. Aloha Laura, thank you for the comment. As I’m not a copyright expert, I couldn’t give you any legal advice. However, I’m not sure that the ‘nichi’ part of the Fauxbo and Happy Nichi is copyrighted. I’m personally not aware of any copyrights taken on those names (Fauxbonichi has been around for several years. HappyNichi is relatively new with the introduction of the Half Sheets). Just my thoughts…

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