I love to write, which is one reason that I started this blog. I simply express myself better through the written word (ok, ok, silly FB updates, typos, and nonsensical rantings notwithstanding).
I also love to keep a private journal for myself. There is something about using an actual pen on actual paper that just feels satisfying to my soul. A friend of mine recently mentioned her love for that sound you hear, that feel of the pages when paper has been written on both sides. It gets soft, crinkly, and it’s filled with your heart, your soul. Yes, I can wax poetic about pen and paper.
It doesn’t matter if it’s just a daily gratitude journal. Or maybe how you track the food you eat. Or, if you’re like me, I have a whole separate book just for writing things down when I have good ideas, because if it’s not written down these days, I will forget it.
For me, I use composition notebooks for most of these things. I can stock up on them inexpensively at Costco ($7 for an eight pack!), they are sturdy, and they remind me a bit of my youth. But when I decided this year to start a new, real journal — one for my thoughts, my daily reflections, and really pouring out my soul when I’m inspired to do so, my composition notebook cover suddenly looked boring to me. Even the fun, colorful ones that I have didn’t inspire me. I would love to run out and buy a $50 fancy journal, because I do really have a thing for nice journals (I’ve filled a few decent ones in my life). But, a fancy journal is not in my budget right now, so I decided to make my composition notebook fancy. And it was fun!
- Composition notebook
- Hot glue gun & glue stick
- 8.5×11 felt sheet(s) in your pattern or color of choice (I got mine at Hobby Lobby for 25 cents each)
- Any inspirational language/images you want to print and include
I would like to say it was very complicated, and make myself look all awesome and super crafty, but it wasn’t. I took my felt, trimmed it down a bit so as not to cover the spine (for easy open close and no buckling/tearing of my pretty cover). I started at the left edge, and added hot glue, pressed it down, and repeated until the front was securely fashioned.
Then I opened it up, and started folding and gluing the corners/edges inside. I am not good at this, so they are a little puffy and I’m sure there is a way to have trimmed them better, but it works for me.
Once the felt was done on the front cover, I went to the back cover. I only had one piece in each pattern of felt, so I decided to just print out something to mod podge to the back. And so I did. I trimmed the page again to fit left-to-right, then I just mod podged it onto the book, gluing the remaining flaps to the inside of the back cover.
I had also printed out another quote/thing I wanted to include, so when all was dry, I flipped it back to the front and using my hot glue gun to quickly glue my wording to the cover as well. In 20 minutes I had taken my less-than-a-dollar and ‘boring’ black & white composition notebook and transformed it into a journal that really is all mine.
I really enjoyed doing it, and plan to do a lot more of such “spruce ups” around my house and with my things this year. Making something new and pretty from stuff I already have, or with minimal additions. Very fun!
I have a new link-up writing project that I will be posting this year as well, so watch for my first post in that project tomorrow!