Thursday, February 23, 2012

Art Journaling: Supplies

I know a lot of people who list journaling as something they'd like to do. Sometimes it is even a New Year's resolution. These same people usually talk, at length of how they started out pretty well, but eventually puttered out. Maybe "dear diary" journal writing just isn't your style! With one successful series behind me (on embroidery techniques) I have decided that March will be the month of the art journal! There will be lots of other projects too, but for those of you interested in journaling, and specifically art journaling: get ready for some awesome ideas, tips and tricks to make this a successful year (or month at least) in keeping a journal.

I have compiled this little list of supplies that you may want so you can follow along in March with all the great journal ideas I have for you!

To start, you will need the journal itself. I typically opt for some sort of sketchbook. To make it something I use more regularly, a small size that can fit easily into any bag, purse, etc is key for me. I also like my journals to have a coiled wire binding. This way, I can fold the whole thing open and lay it flat on a table, hands free, if I paste in a recipe or project idea I want to look at while crafting/baking etc. later on. Don't limit yourself though, If you want to paste your ideas into an old book (I'm a fan of science type journals: botanical survey books can be great!) feel free. The beauty of an art journal is you can be as free with it as you like! Just have some kind of book. You can even hole punch paper and use loose binder rings to fasten it together as you go (great if you like using varieties of paper for different media--you can insert watercolor paper just as easily as graph paper or copy paper).

Next, and especially if you have had trouble sticking to any kind of journaling in the past, find supplies that make you WANT to journal. I found these great woodless colored pencils the other day and I can't wait to use them!

I also typically have gel pens in several colors around the house, I love the way they feel in my hand when I write, so I want to write a lot! I also recommend making yourself a decorative (as well as protective) book cover. I like to use felt or other fabrics, in bright colors. Keep your journal where you will see it and the bright color will draw your eye and remind you to pick it up and write! SO pick out a fabric, felt or decorative paper you would like to see on your cover (you can also recycle the cover of an old hardcover book from a flea market if you'd like).

Have a large stack of magazines you have been meaning to get rid of, but you just can't bring yourself to do it because you know there was something in there you had to keep? Well, flip through them, tear out the things you wanted to keep and save them aside. We'll be adding these to your journal in several fun ways :)

Pick out at least one art or craft supply that you have never used before but would like to try. I purchased some stickers and my first roll of Washi tape the other day at collage and plan on using some of the tape to embellish pages throughout my journal. This is a great time to get a sample set of oil pastels, paints, stamps, stencils, etc and try them out!

Have a variety of papers to incorporate. I always get scrap book paper and cardstock when I find it on sale. Often, I have so much I don't know what to do with it: Embellish pages in your journal, make envelopes to add to pages as pockets, cut out fun shapes and more!

Some optional supplies you may want:

graph paper (especially handy for quilters/embroidery buffs)
various glues
pencil sharpener
binder clips (make some fancy ones like these!)
paper punches (edge and corner punches can make your finished journal look extra cute with decorative edges)
Ribbon (decorate pages or use it as a bookmark)
ink pads
paint brushes
Buttons, velcro, etc to make a closure on your cover (there will be tutorials on this stuff later)
needles and thread (you can sew paper too!)

Gather up your supplies and get ready for some fun! Tutorials start on March 1st!


  1. i love art journalling!! Im so glad I found you via hello cotton!

  2. Welcome! I'm thinking about doing a link party at the end of March for people to show off their journals, so check back and share if you like :)