A few years ago I began to question why I paid for journals; couldn’t I just make them myself? I thought of the only art company I knew at the time, and I ordered a kit from Dick Blick. For a spatially challenged person, the directions were tough. But I trooped through. Then I did additional research and began to make very simple, but personalized, journals. I gave most away (ironic, when I set out to create them for myself). Early on, I’d do collages on the front and then use contact paper to secure the collage. All this was before my creative daughter introduced me to Mod Podge gloss.
Then, last summer, I enrolled in a bookmaking class taught by talented Chad Alice Hagen at the John C Campbell Folk School. She pushed us and challenged us and taught us so much in the course of one week. I came home with not only five finished beauties, but some basic skills I could use to improve my solo attempts.
This is my place to share these journals, and create one for you if you do not see one you like already. The majority of these are one-of-a-kind. Even if the material on the outside is the same as another, the insides or the button or whether there’s a pocket inside or not varies. Lately, I’ve been adding black and white photos I’ve selected from the antique store (the faces tell a story), or random used postcards with or without messages on them (also older). All journals have a minimum of 20 total pages on which to write, paste, or draw. The paper is torn and a decent weight (often I used sketch pad paper, never typing paper). The small journals are excellent gifts when you fill them with words that describe the receiver — a very thoughtful and unique gift. My prices are very affordable, and I also barter. Do you have something I want (such as a book, some fabric, old paper, buttons, etc.)? If so, propose it and we may find we can make a mutually beneficial trade. I’m all about that, but money works, too!
See the descriptions below for each journal. Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you’d like one! For those who like to see and feel, many of my journals can also be found at Victoria’s Antiques Mall in Blairsville, GA.