DIY Art Journal tutorial

Hello! Today I want to share with you how I made my own art journal. So what is an art journal anyway? An art journal is like a diary or journal but expressing oneself in words and art. It can be anything really, stamping, collage, sketching, drawing, painting etc. I had been wanting to try out art journaling for a while now but had been holding off because I feel I don’t know what to do. But I decided to just try anyway. Most importantly it is the process of it that captured my interest more than the final work. I can experiment with art techniques, express my thoughts and document in a book form.

Previously I shared a blog post about making a booklet to store my Peerless watercolors, click here if you like to read it.  So I decided to make my own art journal because I enjoyed making the booklet for my Peerless watercolors. There are many ways of making your own art journals using old books or notebooks or composition books but I just prefer the blank pages for my journal.

DIY Art Journal

Supplies that I used – ( I mainly used items I already had at home)

  • Paper  (Any kind that you have – I used loose sketchbook papers)
  • Thread
  • Paper piercer
  • Needle
  • Chipboard for covers and spine ( I used an old calendar cover for my covers)
  • Glue gun
  • Double sided tape / Tape runner

Folded sketchbook papers

  1) I took 5 sheets of sketchbook papers (sized 11.5″ by 15″)  and folded into half. I repeated the process 4 times. You might have some extra edges after you folded them in half; you can cut the excess away but I didn’t mind the edges.

Making marks to sew the binding

   2. I took one of the booklets that had been folded in half and opened in the centre. I measured the centre of point of the booklet, and made an “X”. Then I made an one inch markings throughout to indicate where I should put my stitching. I made 10 marks so I can have 5 stitching points. Use a needle or paper piercer to make the holes.

Threading the booklet

Threading the booklet

  3) Use needle and thread to sew the pages together. I use a white thread and went over a couple times and tied the knot on the outside of the booklet where the spine is suppose to be.

Threading the booklet

  4) This is what it looks like when all 4 of the booklets are done.

Chipboard spine for booklet

  5) I cut a piece of chipboard for my spine. I pressed the 4 booklets down flat and measured out the width to get the width of the spine. I used glue gun to adhere the spine to the booklets.

covering the cover of the art journal

  6) Then I used an old calendar cover to use as the cover of my art journal. I used scrapbook paper to cover the the calendar cover.  To attached both covers together, I used another sheet of sketchbook paper and adhered it to the underside of back cover and brought it over the spine as well. Then attached the front cover to the sketchbook paper. Then the art journal is finished.

diy art journal

The journal can lie flat when opened.

diy art journal

Top view

diy art journal side view

Side view

And there we have it. DIY art journal! I can’t wait to play with it. Please leave me a comment if you have any questions. I found this link to Julie Fei-Fan Balzer’s blog to get started in art journaling is pretty useful. She is a wonderful artist!

Thanks for stopping by and Happy crafting!

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