I finally finished the art journal/scrapbook/diary/creative thing that I’ve been working on for the past 1 1/2 years! And boy is it a full book. The journal started out in a regular, rectangle shape and now it’s more of an overstuffed oval. :’D
Today I’m sharing a few of my favorite spreads I’ve made! We’re gonna go through some pretty paper collages, very random paper ephemera (like a cough drop wrapper), flyers, nametags, and lots of written memories. ❤ I hope you guys enjoy this peek into my creative journal!
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See what I mean about overstuffed? The cover hardly even closes anymore! :’D I highly recommend a leather journal like this for creative journaling, and if you need a suggestion, here’s one like mine on Amazon.
Now for the pages. I like pasting in flyers from plays or shows we go to – Sully and I went to an amusing Veggie Tales musical some of our younger friends were acting in, so that’s what the blue flyer is from. On the right I stuck my nametag from a small group we went to at Sully’s church.
I also like sticking in notes and cards I receive. This note came in a sweet surprise package that made my day, so of course I had to include it and write about it a bit on the blank side. I had a lot to journal about on the second page, so I glued in a little paper bag to act as a fold-out pocket for more journaling or art.
Another thing I like to include in my journal is pretty paper pieces I get from my pen pals. It’s a good way to preserve and enjoy ephemera I otherwise don’t have room to display. The washi tape pieces are samples from pen pals as well, and I stuck in another name tag that Sully wrote for me at another small group event. 🙂
Don’t be afraid to include some junk in your journal! Some people actually call them “junk journals” because they paste in a lot of scraps like this fortune cookie wrapper from Panda Express. It serves as a physical reminder of a special day as well as a way to decorate my page.
I like to cut out pretty pictures from an old National Geographic book and use them as backgrounds. For this piece of journaling, I also illustrated a memory from the date I was journaling about – Sully and I stopped to buy some yellow plastic spoons and a little container of ice cream and shared it in the car. Good times. 🙂
(I’m blurring some of this stuff out for privacy reasons.) Once Sully’s little cousin opened a pretend store and asked us to be the customers. 🙂 I stuck the Post-It notes into my pocket when she was done instead of throwing them away because they made perfect little flaps for an art journal page.
I got to visit Sully’s family at a campground when they went on a mini vacation, and I stuck the parking pass in my journal later on. On the right is journaling about a trip to the Bible Museum in D.C., + a cough drop wrapper Sully gave me on the way because for some reason I didn’t have any other flyers or ephemera saved from that day. 😛
I love the vintage collage feel of this spread! It looks pretty simple, but part of that music paper on the bottom is a rather camouflaged flap that lifts up to reveal more journaling.
On the left, I used more packaging to create a page – the bag from a gift for the background as well as part of the label for a pocket to hold journaling. On the right, I stuck on a little note Aria included in a package she gave me and made the two pages cohesive by using similar photos on each page.
I like making one page of a spread a “cover page” with a pretty collage and then filling in all the writing on the other page. I tied these two pages together by extending the right page’s background paper over the center line and onto the left page. Sometimes for very long and eventful days, instead of writing a detailed account of all the happenings, I’ll list special memories or keywords or inside jokes that will remind me of the stories behind them.
And other days, I just write a LOT. I actually typed up a whole narration of one day to stick in the vintage “September 1919” pocket, but I took it out for the picture so you could see the Alice in Wonderland play flyer I pasted in behind. The right page features another National Geographic photo in the background, and yet another nametag. Nametags are just very easy-to-take-home-without-seeming-weird ephemera, you know? 😛
On the left I included some pen pal ephemera and an outline from a women’s retreat hosted at our house for our church. On the left I used a sheet from a notepad I got at Sully’s church as a flap to journal under.
Here’s another “list of memories” page with a bit of regular journaling on the back of this flap. I made a patchwork-quilt background out of some cute little decorative vellum pieces I had.
I preserved my voting sticker along with a bit of journaling and collage on the left, and went all-out on the right with a bunch of overlapping flaps, using paint-swatch scraps, a hot-chocolate wrapper thing, and some more vellum pieces. I love how interactive this page is – you have to open one flap before you can get to another, so you have to read each part individually instead of skimming through it all at once. Clearly I’m still a little kid who is obsessed with lift-the-flap books. :’D
Featuring a Bingo sheet from a serve event at Sully’s church and a coloring page from a pen pal plus a beautiful quote I wanted to remember.
Ooh, this is one of my favorite spreads in the journal; I want to make more like it in my next one. I love how many elements there are yet how well the colors go together, and I love the different interactive elements that combine art, ephemera or gifts from pen pals, and writing.
Sometimes I have so many stickers I just need to unload them onto one wild and crazy spread. Ta-daa! I made it a bit more interesting by adding notes about where some of the stickers were from.
It’s also fun to do this with sticky notes. You can put anything in your journal that fits!
On the left: another flyer, from my cousin’s amazing college piano recital! On the right: a brief account of all the various Thanksgivings I went to this year. So much good food.
I don’t actually remember what I journaled about on the left page, but I like all the greens and leaves I used for the flaps and pockets. You will be shocked to note that the right page contains *gasp* another nametag! I didn’t realize I kept so many of these. I know one or two now reside on the walls of Sully’s house, though, because he’s weird. Anyway, we played blackout Uno at a Christmas youth group event thingy and LOOK. I WAS SO CLOSE. Sadness.
Here we have a Christmas card in the background, a simple strip of paper for a pocket of sorts, and some pretty handlettering to decorate a folded-up-flyer from a Christmas service with our church planting group.
I absolutely love this page, and not just because of obvious reasons. :’D (To read the story behind this page, click here for the post.) The colors and design also make me really happy! I used some tissue paper from a gift Aria gave me when she visited, and I used a gold Sharpie and homemade watercolor stickers to accent the page + provide space to journal.
And that’s about it! Here’s my last page, covered with the same paper as I used for the first page. I ended up cutting out the last blank pages once I got to the end of the year since 1) I wanted to start a new journal with the new year, and 2) it was already WAY too thick. I kinda regret that now because with the way the book is put together, it made lots of the other pages loose. : Oh well.
Thus concludes my art journal tour! I’ll put a few links at the end here if you want to see some other posts I’ve made for this book. And I couldn’t resist a collage of how incredibly chubby this little guy is, hehe.
I hope you enjoyed this post, because I’ll definitely be doing similar ones in the future with my new art journal. I’m looking forward to making the next one more artistic and pretty rather than so writing-focused. There were a lot of pages I didn’t put on here because they were mostly just a lot of words. But anyway.
Which page or spread was your favorite? Do you journal?
Thanks so much for reading, my friends, and have a lovely day!
P. S. If you enjoyed this post, check out more art journal content below!