Decorating A journal: Making it Your Own

Decorating A journal: Making it Your Own

Sometimes you do not always have the budget to buy a unique looking journal, but you can still make any journal your own with how you go about decorating it. You do not need to get lots of fancy appliques or crafting material, there are probably plenty of things that you could use that you never would have thought of using.

When you start a journal you want to enjoy the look of it, and the way it feels. Using materials that you find around the house can save you so much money. Here are a few ideas on how you can create a journal cover that is unique and special to you.

Use old clothes

Maybe you have a favourite shirt or a pair of jeans that you absolutely adore, but they are beyond repair or just do not fit anymore. You can use the materials as a cover, creating something super meaningful and unique to you. 

You could even layer up and add different decals to give it more character, anything you feel like including you can, the journal is yours.


Stamps can be used to add letters, shapes, colour and so on.They're so versatile and are one of the quickest ways to add a little bit of yourself to your journal. You can go out and buy some laser cut stamps or you could go ahead and try to create your own and use paint to help stamp on a design. It doesn’t need to be anything too fancy, if it speaks to you that is all you need.

Washi Tape

Washi Tape and Journaling are a match made in heaven. Washi tape is so versatile, you can also use it for the pages of your journal, if you choose to decorate them. You can just add different strips to your cover or you could even use washi tape to make your very own stickers, whatever your heart desires. You will never need to buy stickers or labels for your projects or journal spreads again. 

DIY Supplies

You could use tile offcuts to create a beautiful mosaic design for your journal, or you could use many different types of flooring offcuts to add a sensory aspect to your journal. Your imagination could work wonders with all these different types of materials that you could use. 
If you like the Steampunk Aesthetic you could go ahead and look at adding different small gears and metallic materials to your journal. 

There is so much that you could do, especially if you are able to put in the time and effort to do so, your possibilities are endless. The same goes for decorating your pages, there is so much possibility given the imagination that we all are capable of. While you don’t want anything too heavy or lumpy there are still plenty of ways to give the same look and effect without diminishing the soul purpose of the journal. Here are a few suggestions that work for both your cover and the pages.


Whether you design an intricate background for a journal spread or you just add an understated watercolour wash to your page, paint can be used to achieve many different outcomes. Paint is also a great medium to build upon and layer on top of, especially if you plan to use more than one different type of paint.


You can find a whole range of different designs and materials for stickers. You can use them as labels, just as decoration or even a space filler to help ‘finish a spread off’. On the off chance you happen to mess up a page but don’t want to ruin your journal you can use them to stick 2 pages together while still decorating either side. 

Coloured Pens

A very easily accessible thing to use is different coloured pens. You have so many options: gel pens, felt tip pens, fine liners, highlighters, the list could go on. A simple but effective choice, with so much potential. As with everything else listed in this blog, they can be used on the cover too, depending on what your vision is.


For some people this can fuel nightmares, but it is a very easy material to use to add a little bit of ‘magic’ to your journal. Bringing the glitz and the glamour. If you do not want to be left with it falling out, you could always use PVA glue or modge podge to seal the glitter in place. (If not, tape works fine too) 


The easiest way to include memories is to add photos into your journal, very much like you would a scrapbook. What better way to capture a moment than with a camera. You can then have visual stimuli to help remember the memory with even more joy and fondness.


Sometimes you don’t have the time to sit and decorate your journal, it’s understandable, time is of the essence. There are many different journals out there that already have patterns or images printed on to the pages to give the journal that added extra flare. Or, maybe you like to keep the inside simple but love the decadence of a fancy cover that takes your breath away. This is when you may choose to invest, and spend that little bit more on your journal.

There are so many different options out there, all evolving and improving constantly. You should always go with what calls to you and pulls you in, rather than listening to those around you who have no idea how personal a journal and your journey could be.

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