Junk Journals

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Junk journals are super fun to make and keep.  You can make them out of almost anything.  I will share several of my different journals on this page.  But first let me give you a big list of things you can put in them, as that is the funnest thing of all.

Things to put in your journal:

  • Ticket stubs
  • Parking stubs
  • Postcards
  • Magazine photos
  • Postage Stamps
  • Number from the Butcher or Deli Counter
  • Lottery Tickets
  • Scratch Off Lottery Tickets
  • Valet Receipts
  • Photos
  • Rubber Stamps
  • Scraps of Pretty Paper
  • Stickers
  • Fruit Stickers
  • Collage Sheet Images
  • Vintage Ephemera
  • Appointment Cards
  • Playbills
  • Business Cards
  • Song Lyrics
  • Poetry
  • Quotes You Like
  • Doodles
  • Drawings
  • Decorative Tape (scotch tape, duct tape, washi tape)
  • Newspaper Clippings
  • Journaling Spots
  • Envelopes
  • Invitations
  • Luggage Ephemera
  • Absolutely anything made from paper that comes your way

My first junk journal I started with a clean composition notebook that cost less than $1.00 during the back to school sales.  I think these are a great size and a good way to get going quick and easy. 

The first thing I did was to choose some pretty scrapbook paper to cover it with. 

I also added a pretty image from a magazine and a Teresa Collins buckle.  The idea behind a junk journal is as a place to stuff all kinds of junk.  I usually prep my pages with gesso to give the pages more strength.  Then you can use different background techniques (hint: you can find a few on our scrapbooking techniques page under background techniques.)

As you can see, my journal quickly became so fat the belt buckle could no longer be buckled and I had to get a belly band to hold it closed.  I love the look and feel of every page, but here are a few of my favorites from this journal.  Then I will show you some of my other journals.


This is one of my first pages.  As you can see, I put things in here such as postage stamps that I thought were interesting, a DMV ticket stub, fruit stickers, photos from magazines, advertisements, appointment cards, art work from a play we went to see, stickers that came in the mail, etc.


I'm just sharing some random pages throughout this book.  The above page was the paper I used for a while underneath the page I was painting.  Then I cut it to size and glued it in the journal.  I think I had even stamped on it previously to test out the stamp, so it was just randomness.  Perfect for this type of book!  The page on the right I just took the images from a magazine and I remember the song lyrics was from a song one of the contestants had sung on American Idol that stuck with me so I just had to make a page about it.  Just randomness - that's what this book is all about.

I did a lot of magazine collage type pages as well.

Then I was starting to journal a lot over the magazine images - kind of fun.

I do a lot of experiments in my junk journal as well.  Some stuff I am not as crazy about the way it turns out.  And sometimes I amaze even myself.  Ha ha

Creating these journals is a great way to use up those bits of paper, magazine images, etc. 

Besides magazine images I love collage sheet images and use them extensively now.  I buy a lot on Etsy and I stalk the internet looking for freebies as well.  There is a lot of good stuff out there if you look hard enough.  I also love using decorative tape or washi tape in my books.  Use your rubber stamps - it's one of the rare times I actually do!

Okay, last page from this journal.  Now for another journal all together.

This journal is made with 3 rings.  I like this type because it lies very flat making it very easy to work in, as well as very easy to add pages to.


Okay, just a few quick pics of my other journals.

This one is small and is made out of a recycled potato chip bag.

These next few books are actually my ROD journals (Remains of the Day), but they are so similar to junk journals that I thought I would include a few pages from them.


As you can see in the photo above, I might stick in some tickets to some events we attended on one side and I've included a journaling spot where I can write about the event on the other side.

Here I've included the engagement photo of my nephew and his now wife.  I've also included underneath it a piece of my sample ballot from an election.  It kind of puts the whole thing into perspective of what was happening in the world at the time.  The other side is just randomness again. 

Here I have included the wedding invitation to some dear friends' daughter's wedding, and then the placecards of some friends we hadn't seen in years.  (They let me have them!)

And photos of lots of things and journaling about them!  Luggage tags from trips can be put in randomly.  I collect things like this everywhere I go.  Yesterday I was at the post office and I found a used lottery ticket.  Of course, I picked it up and said to my husband "journal fodder."  He totally gets it.  LOL


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