Thursday, July 5, 2012

Travel Journal Smash Style

It's summer time in many parts of the world, and that means vacation time. Hi, it's Cathy here today to share how I create journals for our travels. These little beauties really help me with my scrapping, and my memory!

Whenever we travel, I always take a notebook to keep track of my thoughts. I jot down things we did, places we visited and laughs that we shared. These notebooks come in handy when I finally get around to scrapping our trip (usually months or even years later!). I can read through them and be reminded of all those wonderful moments that I never wanted to forget. Some of them I only remember because I did write them down!  :-)

Lately, I've been making my little travel journals a bit fancier. Instead of the little lined notebook from the office supply shop, I've been making personalized journals for my trips.  It's fun to do ahead of time when you are excitedly anticipating your vacation.

This little book was really easy to make. I designed it in Photoshop using digital scrapbook elements.  I printed it on a piece of 8.5"x11" canvas textured paper in landscape orientation (Simply folded the cover in half lengthwise to create the album).  I painted on a few coats of Mod Podge Hard Coat decoupage medium. The nice part about the Hard Coat variety, is that it dries with no tackiness and, once it is cured (only takes a few days), you can actually wipe it with a damp cloth to clean it!

I used 3 hole punch graph paper (turned landscape) for the paper inside the journal. I would have preferred to not have the 3 hole punched type, but it was what I had on hand.  I like to use graph paper in my journals. Not only does it give me lines to write on (if I want to), but it also makes it easy for me to sketch things in perspective if the mood so moves me.

To create the "binding" for this journal, I simply punched 2 holes through the cover and inside papers, then tied some twine through the book. Doesn't get much easier than that!

For a little added "bling" I strung some beads where I tied up the twine.

This next travel journal is a bit more involved.  I created this one as a Smash type journal. I created the cover using digital scrapbook kits and elements. I printed the covers out and decoupaged them to chipboard. I also used the Mod Podge Hard Coat on this one, so I would have the nice finish that is easy to clean.

This book is larger, it measure 9" tall x 5.75" wide.  Inside I used a combination of graph paper, pocket pages and envelopes.  In the pockets, I've prepared some elements that I can use to title or accent my journal pages.

The pockets and envelopes can also be used to keep memorabilia and ephemera that we collect on our trip.

I don't put photos in my journals. For one thing, I don't have a way of printing my photos when I am away.  I also don't want to take time away from enjoying my family and vacation to be scrapping.  But I do make notes in my journal of  photos that I really like or I know I want to scrap later.  When we get home, I'll have everything right together in my journal to help me get to scrapping all my photos.

I'm really enjoying taking the time to create these more personal travel journals. It gives me just that little bit more incentive to make sure I journal about our travels.  And then, when we do get home, and reality returns, even if I don't get around to scrapping the photos for a while, I at least have a handy, and attractive, journal to read and reflect on our trips.


  1. Wow... What a neat idea! I am going to try this canvas cover on my gratitude journal. Thanks for sharing :)

  2. I love the way you did the binding! And I thought I knew everything about Mod Podge - I had no idea there was a Hard Coat variety. Great project!!