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Sunday, October 17, 2021

Intro To Junk Jpurnals


Intro To Junk Journals

In its basic form, a junk journal is a journal created from things that would otherwise be thrown away. It is a journal where you can record your thoughts and ideas on any number of subjects. It often has large areas where you can write your thoughts and feelings. Beyond all that, the junk journal is a piece of custom art created by you. You can even use this type of journal as a planner too.

You can get free junk journal pages on the internet for free or at a low cost. You can also create a junk journal from scratch using things like cereal boxes and junk cardboard. You can also recycle old books to create a junk journal.

  1. You can use it as an everyday journal. You can collect thoughts, ideas, and things from your everyday life.
  2. You can use it as a planner. Create to-do lists, birthday and anniversary lists, calendar lists, and more. Add your own decor and embellishments and you have a planner that is unique as you are.
  3. You can make your journal just a place to record your thoughts. But you can also theme your junk journal to reflect a specific interest you may have. It could reflect a hobby like sewing, gardening, books, or travel.
  4. Make a memory book to remember someone special or a special occasion in someone's life. You can make a book of memories from the bits and pieces of a life well spent.
  5. Create a journal to celebrate s special occasion. Creating a unique journal for a birthday, anniversary, graduation, wedding, and more.
  6. Use a junk journal as an art journal. Use pieces of art that you have created. Use mixed media like watercolors, gesso, pastes, inks, and more.

The best thing about these types of journals is the fact that there absolutely no rules. So your journal can be anything that you want it to be. 

The cover of the book is most often made from an old repurposed book cover. The cover can also be made with cardboard recycled from boxes that have been used to hold products from your kitchen.

Of course, the paper is one of the most important parts of your junk journal. Your paper can included some elements that you have repurposed to include:

  • Plain paper
  • Patterned paper
  • Envelopes
  • Sheet music
  • Maps
  • Paper from bags
Any paper that you have can be altered to give your paper an aged look. There are a number of ways to alter your paper.

What Size Are Junk Journals?

There are no set rules when it comes to the size of your junk journal. It can be a pocket-size to fit in a purse or a tote bag. Standard book sizes are also popular for these types of journals. There are some that are 12 inches wide to display on a coffee table. You make it the size that fits your needs.

Is Binding Difficult To Do In Junk Journals?

There are a lot of easy ways to bind your junk journals. You can actually use things like dental floss and rubber bands to bind your junk journals. It can be as simple as using staples. Even in the larger junk journals, there are simple two stitch binding techniques that you can learn in minutes. We will show you lots of methods in the coming days ahead.

What Goes Into A Junk Journal?

Just about anything and everything can be added to the pages of your junk journal. You can keep moments, tickets, buttons, cards, pictures, bits of lace and fabric, and just about anything you can think of. Heavier keepsakes like shells can be tucked into envelopes added to your pages.

In the truest sense, a junk journal is a collection of actual junk. That could include things from catalogs, envelopes of all shapes and sizes, cards, and any pieces that come from your mail that you might normally throw away.

It can also be any boxes from products that you have in your home. You can also use old cardboard tubes from paper towels and toilet paper rolls, It can also be toilet paper and paper towels. Think about old make up that can be used for coloring.  It can be tea bags and coffee grinds that are used to age paper. Anything you can think of can be used in your journals!

How Do You Get Started Making A Junk Journal

  1. Decide what your junk journal will be used for. Think about what you will do with it once you make it. Understanding how you will use it will help you focus on design and planning.
  2. Decide how you will bind it. There are four basic ways to bind your junk journals. The first is a sewn binding. You are sewing the binding into the covers. Another uses binder rings. The pages have holes punched into them and then the pages are threaded on the rings. A third way to bind the pages is with rubber bands. Old books provide a base for a junk journal. They ate called altered books.
  3. Collect the materials you need to create your journals. You will need paper, a paper trimmer, scissors, binding supplies, some adhesives. You can also gather some ephemera that you may have to decorate your pages. 
  4. Assemble and prepare your book. This means that you will prepare the cover of your book. You also need to cut paper to the size of your book and prepare them for binding, if necessary. 
  5. Fill the journal up! Start adding all types of decor and embellishments to your pages. This is truly the fun part of the project!
  6. Add pockets to your pages. I love pockets in junk journals. They are little places where all kinds of surprises and gifts can be included. You can put things like pictures, moments, cards and more.

Using Stamps With Your Junk Journal

Think about all the stamps and stamp sets that you have. So many of them can be utilized in your junk journals. Here are just a few ideas:

  • Using themed stamps-if your journal has a specific theme, just pull out those types of stamps to create all kinds of embellishments, stamped backgrounds, and more
  • Background stamps-create whole background pages or partial pages in the color of your choice.
  • Word and phrase stamps-add a single word or phrase to any of your pages. Add directly on the page or stamp the word on a strip of scrap cardstock. You can add these just to the page or use foam dots to add dimension.

Using Craft Punches With Yout Junk Journal

Craft punches are other tools that can be useful with your junk journals. Besides making little flowers or other small pieces, you can also create shapes and borders to add to your pages. 

Don't Forget The Stencils

Stencils are the perfect way to add some pizazz to your junk journals. Add pieces of stenciled paper or do the background of a page. It's up to you. Remember there are no hard fast rules when it comes to junk journals. It is your art your way!

Die Cutting For Your Junk Journal

Think about all the dies that you own and how they might be used in your junk journal.
  • Add layers to a page with your shape dies.
  • Die-cut images that fit your theme
  • Add a die-cut word or phrase
  • Add more dimension by heat embossing your dies

Free Clip Art For Your Junk Journal

There is free clip art of gorgeous pictures all over the internet. All you have to do is to download it and resize it if needed. There are lots of retro images, flowers, holidays, and animals. Just type what you are looking for and add the phrase free clip art. 

Coloring Books For Your Junk Journal

If you like to color, you can use part of your coloring pages to decorate your junk journal. Use pieces as corner pieces, Create banners with pieces of coloring pages. Cut pieces of coloring pages with your dies, Create letters and words with your coloring page, Have fun, and be creative!

Paper Scraps In Your Junk Journal

My husband likes to quip with folks how I use every scrap of paper till it is the size of my smallest fingernails. And that is true. Using paper scraps means that I get the most for the money that I spend. But it also means that I am a responsible paper crafter, using my resources to help the environment. 

Of course, you can die-cut paper down to the smallest piece. You can also punch the smaller pieces into embellishments, Or you can stamp on your scrap paper. Almost every piece of paper that you might have can be used. 

I have a special box where I keep all my scrap paper and paper resources for my junk journals. I just dig in and find the colors I need. I encourage you to do the same.

Using Stencils

Stencils are the perfect tools to add dimension and design to your junk journal pages. They can be used with paint, embossing paste, distress inks, and oxide inks. You can use the whole stencil or just part of it. 
Here are a few of our favorite stencils for your consideration, Earning may be made from some of these purchases at no expense to you. All earnings are used to enhance this community. Thank you for your support.

We have only scratched the surface of junk journals. Check out these additional Junk Journal Resources:

Have A Great Day And Happy Crafting

Thursday, October 7, 2021

Plain And Simple Card Design

Plain And Simple Card Design

Sometimes all you need to make a statement is a thought with a simple design. The simplicity of this stamp set allows you to create a sentiment with a design that is clean and simple.  I think this stamp set gives you all that and more.

This is another opportunity for me to share my journey through the Educators Program at Altenew.

Today, I am sharing with you the stamp set called Painted Poppy. This stamp set features two-layered poppies, layered buds, and leaves as well as some wedding anniversary sentiments that can be personalized. There is also a die set available, so you have lots of opportunities to create some wonderful greeting cards. Beyond greeting cards, this stamp set would be perfect to use with your art journals and junk journals. You could also make custom scrapbook paper. That is why I love the Altenew stamp sets. 

Card Details

  • The card base for thus card measures 5" by 6 " 
  • Second layer 6 7/8" measures 4 3/4" by 6 7/8"
  • The stamped section is 4" by 5 1/2"

Every layered stamp set in the Altenew line has a corresponding layered direction sheet available to print. This card was a simple stamped design. When you are layering, you get the best results when you stick with ink colors in the same family. I like to use my Misti when layering, but acrylic blocks work just as well. 

Here is another simple card created to express a sentiment that speaks for itself. 

Card Details

The card was embossed using grey embossing powder, then stamped
  • The card base measures 5 1/2" by 6"
  • The second layer is 5" by 5 7/8\
  • The stamped and embossed layer is 4 1/2 " by 5 1/8"

Card Details

This card was layered  with stamps, I used a Spectrum Noir Glitter pen to add some detail to the layered section.

The base measures 5 1/8" by 6"
The second layer 41/2" by 5 1/2:"
The stamped layer measures 4 1/4 by 5 1.8"

More Tips

All of the cards bases were made with Ninah cardstock that was 110lbs. 
Foam squares used to give depth to the second layer of paper
When you are layering stamped images use inks that are in the same color family.

Thank you for being part of my journey learning and growing in the techniques on layering stamps.

Tuesday, October 5, 2021

Magazine Collages For Junk And Art Journals

Magazine Collages For Junk And Art Journals

You can create a collage from a picture in a magazine or a catalog, This is a wonderful recycling project that can be made mostly with things that you probably have on hand.

This technique is so relaxing and enjoyable. With only a few supplies, you can create a one-of-a-kind piece of artwork. Create these pages with either magazine images or decorative napkins. 


Modge Podge or other decoupage medium
Craft glue
Old credit card or gift card
Cloth or cosmetic squares
A small and medium paintbrush
Magazine images or decorative napkins

  1. Rip at least one page of a magazine into small pieces. Keep the clean edges of the page as much as possible. Set aside
  2. Glue two pages together with craft glue. Apply the glue. Spread with an old greeting card. Put together and smooth with the heal of your hand. 
  3. Allow to dry.
  4. With the medium paintbrush apply glue to the back of each piece of the ripped magazine page.
  5. Apply to the art journal page. Use the edge pieces of the magazine page on the edges of your journal page,
  6. Allow to dry
  7. Apply the acetone to the pieces with the cosmetic sponge or cloth
  8. Gradually remove all color from the pages.
  9. Once the color is removed, allow the page to dry.
  10. If you are using a napkin image, use a small paintbrush with water to " cut" around the image to fit your page
  11. If you are using a magazine image, trim around the image to fit the page
  12. Using a paintbrush, add decoupage medium ( Modge Podge) to the page
  13. Carefully place your image or napkin piece to the page
  14. Cover the image with additional glue spreading it over the piece
  15. Add additional images and trims the same way
  16. Allow the page to dry

Here are some products that will help you create the perfect collage. Some of these products may have commissions at no cost to you. These commissions are used to enhance this community. Your support is appreciated,

Prepping Altered Books


Prepping Altered Books


Preparing your book starts with the choice of your book. You need to be sure that the book you use will stand up to the techniques and alterations that you will do. 

Using old books is a perfect recycling idea for junk journals as well as art journals. The first thing to consider when altering and prepping an old book is the spine. You want to use a book that has a sewn spine rather than a glued spine. Look for the sewn sections (or signatures. The more stitches the better the book will hold up to the things you will add to it.. 

The book needs to have sections (called signatures) that are sewn. To check the construction of the book, hold the book up so you can see the inner part of the spine where the pages touch it. If you can see the page sections clearly then it was stitched. 

Start with any dust that may be on your book. Wipe the book down with a clean cloth.

To get the pages and the book moving a bit, open the book and flex some of the pages.

Removing Pages From The Book

You will want to remove some of the pages from your book. That will give you room for the thickness of the pages that you are going to create. 

Before you start removing pages, look through your book. You may find some illustrations that you may want to keep. Mark those pages with a paper clip or a post-it note.

You will need a lead pencil and a small craft knife for the next step. 
  • Select 4 pages from your book
  • The middle two pages will be cut close to the spine leaving about 1/2 " of the page (1.5 cm)
  • The two outer pages are marked with a "g" with your pencil
  • These two pages will be glued.
  • Move through the book, removing additional pages, and marking the others with the "G"
Hang onto the removed pages. They can be used later for all kinds of embellishments. For the tome being, set them aside.

Gluing The Pages

Gluing some of the pages will give you a more solid base for your pages. You can use a gel medium for this part of the process. It sticks well, but it takes some time to dry. So you need some patience.
  • Brush the glue along the middle of the two pages that you marked with the "G"
  • Then ease the two pages together.
  • Then coat the outside of the stumps and one whole page that is to be stuck together.
  • Carefully ease the second page up, starting from the spine out
  • Work from the middle out removing bubbles as you go
Remember that the pages must be stuck on right angles to the spine. That way the book will close properly.
  • Repeat the process with one or two more sets of pages
  • Then close the book and place it on a flat surface
  • Sit something heavy on it and allow it to dry
  • You may need to open the pages and allow it to dry
Tip-You can use parchment or waxed paper between pages while they are drying to keep them from sticking to each other.

Adding Gesso To The Pages

Gesso is a medium that adds strength to your pages. In the case of altered books, it helps make the print on your pages go white. It also comes in black and clear. It is especially good as a basic layer under acrylic paints. It will help with other mediums too. You will want to choose a medium thickness of Gesso for general use.

Now you are ready to start either creating a junk journal or an art journal!

We have included some items which will be helpful for this project. Some of these items may have a commission at no cost to you. These commissions are used to enhance this community, We appreciate your support,

Monday, October 4, 2021

Envelopes For Journals And Scrapbook Pages


Envelopes For Scrapbook Pages

You can create journal envelopes with small pieces of scrap paper

We all have those bits of paper leftover from our paper projects, But instead of throwing those papers away, why not recycle them into delightful paper journal envelopes. With a minimal amount of supplies, you can create some sweet additions to your scrapbook pages, art journals and junk journals. 


  • Rectangular pieces of cardstock
  • PVA glue
  • Bonefolder or ruler
  • A die-cut flower, ribbon, or other shapes
  • Beads, lace, or other decoration
  1. Take the top of the paper rectangle in both hands. Turn the two sides of the paper inward until you create a point at the top of the paper. Make the corners as even as possible. Use the bone folder or a ruler to make good creases.

2. Now, fold over the point of the piece till the point sits on top of the inside of the paper. Again use the bone folder to make good creases. Make the fold as even as possible.

3. Bring up the bottom half of the paper to meet the top and create the envelope. Use the bone folder to create strong creases. 

4. Glue the tabs on the flap. Add a die cut to the bottom to hold the flap. Only partially glue the die-cut so that the flap will fit in, You can trim the flap to make it fit better

5. Add any decoration to the envelope. You can open the strip to add any pictures, decor or journaling.

You can make these envelopes in any size that you would like. Use printed paper, vellum, or solid paper. You could also use glitter paper. There are no rules, just use your imagination and what you have on hand,

Have fun and let us know what you think about this idea! Happy Crafting!

We have added some supplies that you may need for this project. We may earn commissions for sales of some of these supplies at no cost to you. All earnings are used to enhance this community. Thanks for your support.


Saturday, October 2, 2021

Art Journal Page-Seaside


Art Journal Page-Seaside


Today I was thinking about being at the beach. I suppose my thoughts wandered to the beach becuase we all have been doing the stay-at-home virus thing. So I decided to turn those thoughts into an altered book layout.

The background is a simple tacky glue over acrylic paint. It makes a leathery smooth feel to the paper


Medium flat paintbrush
Wide flat paintbrush
White craft glue
Tacky white craft glue
Acrylic paint
White Neuvo drops
Small shells and pieces
Half gems
Beach embellishments

  1. Glue two pages together on both sides. Use white craft glue. Apply evenly with an old credit card or gift card. Smooth the pages with the heal of your hand. 
  2. Allow to dry
  3. With a medium flat brush, apply a coat of acrylic paint. Allow to dry
  4. Attach an even coating of tacky glue with a wide brush. 
  5. Allow to dry
  6. I drew my netting with white neuvo drops
  7. Allow the neuvo drops to dry
  8. Glue on very small shells with tacky glue
  9. Glue tiny shell pieces with tacky glue
  10. Allow these to dry
  11. Glue on the half gems in no specific pattern with the tacky glue.
  12. Add some beach embellishments with white craft glue
Hope this layout gives you some inspiration. Happy Crafting !

Here are a few art journal supplies that will help you in your artful journey. We may make some commissions for the sale of these products at no cost to you. All commissions are used to enhance this community. Thanks for your support.

Art Journal Supplies


Art Journal Supplies


Before you start working on art journal pages, it is important to think about and gather Art Journal supplies. If you have been a crafter, it is likely that you have many of these supplies already in your stash.

Your Art Journal-Surfaces

It all starts with having the right surfaces to work on. For some, that means starting with the right art journal. What should you think about when you are considering the type of art journal to use?

Paper- Your Art Journal

The first thing to think about is the kind of paper that you will be using when you select your art journal. The kinds of materials (media) that you will be using will determine the kind of paper you should select. 

If you are planning to just use materials like crayons or colored pencils, then any paper will do just fine. But if you are planning to do acrylic paints, water color paints or other mixed media like embossing pastes, then you will certainly need a heavier paper in the weight of watercolor paper.

You can purchase the right journal with the right paper. Or you can get a journal with lighter paper and glue several pages together to create the weight of the paper that you need. Decide what your craft budget will allow and purchase whatever fits your need.

You also need to consider the stability of the journal you are going to use. If you you purchase a ready-made journal, stability should not be a question. If you are using an old book, then you really need to consider the spine of the book. I have started several art journals and in the middle of creating, the pages pull away from the spine. It is frustrating for sure.

You want to make sure that the used book that you are considering is bound by stitching rather than glue To check a book to see if it is stitched rather than bound by glue is easy enough. 

  1. Find the center page of the book
  2. Look to see if you see actual stitching on the spine.
  3. Look at the other groups of pages (signatures) to see if you see stitching in those areas
  4. The more stitching you see the better

Size Matters

When you are just starting out, smaller art journals may be less intimidating, but larger journals give you more space to work on. Somewhere in the middle-like a 6" by 9" may be a good starting point.

  • Moleskin journals are very popular. But the paper within tends to be thin.
  • Spiral journals can be found anywhere. They come in a variety of papers, so there are plenty of options. The pages lay flat and can be removed and reassembled. However, depending on how you work them, the spirals can catch on the pages and cause some damage.
  • You can make your own journal. This is a good option because you can select the exact papers and size that you want to use. You can find them online or you can learn to make them yourself. The stitching will hold the book together beautifully.
  • Composition books are often used too. The pages are very thin, so there is a significant amount of prep work that needs to be done. They are very reasonably priced, Also a great starter journal
  • Old hardcovered books are another option. These are very ecofriendly. You can find many of them in a local thrift store or at garage sales, If you chose one of these, make sure that the book has a stitched binding rather than a glued binding.


Gesso is an important part of the art journal process. It adds a little bulk to thinner pages. It preps the page for any acrylic paint. It covers anything that you do not want to see. It comes in black, white and clear. There are quite a few manufacturers who make this product in different strengths of textures. The best place to start with this product is a Liquitex Basic Gesso. You can experiment with different kinds to see which one is best for you.

Paint, Watercolor, and Other Color Media

There is a wide range of color media for you to try! This is the most creative and most fun part of your art journaling experience. Think about crayons, watercolor pencils, pastels, paints, sprays, distress inks, and more.

Acrylic Paints offer a very wide choice when it comes to techniques and ideas. Though I would not suggest the cheaper brands like Folk Art and the Apple brands ( they dry out fast and tend to be somewhat like plastic on your pages). There are plenty of medium-priced brands that will work very well on your art journal pages. Liquitex Basic and Handmade (found at Target) are two brands that are worth looking into.

Watercolors are another product that will help you get started. Get a simple set. You can often find a set in your local box craft stores. Many of them even have a paintbrush included. Give them a try and see how they work for you.


Not all markers will work well on painted and media surfaces. But when it comes to art journals, there are no rules. So give the markers you already have a try. You can use alcohol markers, Sharpie markers, watercolor markers, and more. You can just use markers on one page or mix them with other media.

Stamps And Stencils

Time to dig in your stash and see what you have to add interest to your art journal pages. Stamps and stencils add so much and there are plenty of ways to use them.


There is an endless supply if these right at your fingertips. Almost anything can be used to embellish your art journal pages. Think about things like buttons, lace, and ribbon., You can use memory items like coasters, matchbooks, tickets etc. There are unlimited amounts of embellishments all around you. You just need to think outside of the box.

Adhesives And Mediums

If you are using embellishments, you will need something to adhere them to your pages, There are all kids of glues that can be useful. Tacky glue us very useful for embellishments. You can also use staples, glue sticks and any other adhesives that you may find in your craft area. Mod Podge is also a favorite adhesive for all things paper.

Gel medium is also a staple that you could consider. It is less likely to yellow over time.

Other Tools You May Need

Here are a few more tools you may consider for your art journal pages:

  • Paintbrushes- Use cheap ones for gluing and gesso. Inexpensive foam brushes work well. If you are using watercolors and acrylics you will want to invest in better brushes that will not shed.
  • Binder Clips-They is useful for holding things on the page when the glue needs to dry. You can use them to hold other pages down while you work.
  • Old Credit Cards And Gift Cards-Perfect for spreading glue and other mediums on the page. You can also use them to spread things like embossing paste  over a stencil
  • Scissors-Used to cut paper, ribbons etc
  • Palette Knives-I used them to mix paints and other mediums to get an even spread, You can get a bag of plastic palette knives at very reasonable prices.
  • Heat Gun- Use a craft heat gun rather than a hairdryer to dry any pages or mediums. Hairdryers may be too hot and melt or burn your pages.
  • Waxed Paper/ Parchment Paper- You can use this as a paint palette. You can also cover the pages behind and in front of the pages, you are working on.
  • Brayer- Can be used to spread the paint. You can also use it to rub-down the paper so that the paper sticks to a medium.

 We have included some supplies that you may need in your art journal journey. We may earn some commissions from the sale of some of these products at no cost to you. All earnings are used to support this community. Thanks for your support.