Vintage Journals

pictured here on top of a composition book with one of my vintage bookmarks

This post is similar to another post I wrote about decoupaging composition books (you can read that HERE). But these journals are made with inexpensive hard cover journals that you can find a number of places: dollar stores, dollar bins at Target and craft stores. 

I found these journals clearanced at Michael's. They were already cute, but giving someone a journal with the letter 'C' on it doesn't make sense unless their name starts with a 'C.' And I think decoupaging them with vintage book pages turns them from cute to unique.

I started by decoupaging a page on the spine of the book and letting it dry thoroughly. (For those who've never decoupaged: Decoupage is like a thin glue. I applied it to the surface of the book and carefully smoothed the page onto it. After the surface had dried completely, I put several coats of decoupage on top of the page so it was well covered/coated, letting it dry well between coats. Decoupage is supposed to seal the product, but I recommend you use a spray sealer afterward if it's a craft that will get a lot of use or be displayed in your home because decoupage can get tacky in these situations. But I didn't put an additional sealer on these journals.) 


Then I put a page on front and back...this photo shows the journals in various stages, all drying. The size of these journals was perfect for the page size of my Castellian dictionary that I've used for a number of my decoupage projects (word eggs, word boxes, and word bookmarks). 

 I bought this dictionary very cheaply because it was falling apart, but it has been wonderful for decoupaging. If you don't care about a vintage look, a modern dictionary would also serve this purpose.

These journals were a perfect gift for writer friends at a mini-retreat I held at my house. See all the decor items I had at the retreat on "The Write Party."

I hope this will give you some inspiration for making decoupage journals, and I'd love to hear your comments. I'd also love to have you check out my home page which features 1-Minute devotions. If you'd like "an espresso shot of Scripture in your morning coffee," please sign up for a free subscription. Thanks!


  1. What a neat idea! I am definitely going to try this. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Hi Gail,
    I'll be the first to say, as one of the recipients of your vintage journals, that I love mine. I'm using it to scribble down all my writing ideas. It helps me avoid the Post-It note syndrome -- you know, Post-It notes stuck everywhere except where you look when you need the information.

    My one suggestion for improving this post relates to Step 1. Some of us are so craft-deficient that we don't even know what "decoupaging" is. Instruction in that technique would be a better place to start. (I know, it's hard to believe, but I've made it to 48 without ever dabbling in decoupage :)

    The great pics are a help, too! Blessings to you this day, and an encouragement to Be Not Weary!

    1. Just added a paragraph of explanation for those who haven't decoupaged before. I'd recommend you practice on something first to get the hang of it, but it's relatively easy. You might also want to google for tips on using decoupage. I'm sure there are people who do it smarter than I do, but I used it when it first came out in the 1970's.
      : )

  3. love your ideas so very nice come see us at

  4. These turned out great, love the vintage book pages, I keep a daily scripture journal so this would be perfect!

  5. These would make a wonderful gift!! I'll have to keep a 'look out' for books like these. I used to do decopage with Holly Hobby wrapping paper (hehe!! showing my age...and I know you could practically tell me what year that was!!)

    Thanks for linking up over at WholeHearted Home this week. Your faithful comments always bless me!!

  6. Hi Gail,
    These are great journals. I really like them. What a good idea. Thanks so much for sharing with Wednesday's Adorned From Above Link Party last week.
    Have a great Thanksgiving.
    Debi @ Adorned From Above

  7. Great idea! Thanks so much for sharing.
    Hope you have a good week!
    Hugs from Portugal,

    Ana Love Craft

  8. The journals turned out so pretty!

  9. I love it! Pinning this! I have a huge fondness for journals and used to collect them as a teenager. Thanks for sharing with us!

  10. Love this idea - thanks for sharing!! :-)