The Tiny Traveling Journal

My husband and I have been discussing our 25th anniversary, which occurs next year. Weve been to Germany, France, and some of the surrounding countries but have never been to Italy. So, after very little debate (it is, after all, Europe!), we decided to head there. One of the greatest challenges for me when traveling is that I cannot carry my entire workshop with me. It is really hard to decide which art supplies to bring. I know that when I travel to Italy, I will want to carry something with me to create with. I could certainly bring an art journal, but I am thinking about how cumbersome that could be unless the art journal were much smaller. I also have to be truthful to myself about just how much time I really will have to create. Keeping both of those in mind, I decided that I could carry several mini journalsabout four or fiveand create a memento of my time in Italy. This is how the Tiny Traveling Journal was born! Four or five mini journals would not take up too much space. I could also carry a medium sized cosmetic bag of materials (Scor-tape, pencils, markers) to use on the journal. As I make my way through Italy, I can include tickets, mini Polaroid photos, and pressed flowers in the journal.

To create a mini journal, youd need the following basic supplies:

Arnold Grummer's PAPERMILL Complete Papermaking Kit
Any type of botanicals (You can find some fabulous ones here.)
A stamped image that is no longer than the length of two book boards on very thin tissue paper5 Sticky Note Book Boards (four full sized and one cut in half)
Black paint or Black gesso
Clear gesso
Matte Medium
Silk sari ribbon cut three times the length of the five book boards
Accents such as sticky back crystals, flowers, beads, mini clothes pins

Crop-a-dile hole punch or similar 
ColorBox Cat’s Eye Ink Pad

First, make one 8-1/2 x 11 sheet of paper in your favorite color. You can repeat this step to make as many sheets of paper as you will need for the number of journals you desire. When making the sheets, add whatever botanicals you wish. You can also add red onion skins or dried flowers from your own arrangements.
Next, once the paper is done drying, glue the stamped image onto the right margin of the paper lengthwise about an inch from the edge using the matte medium. After the image is completely dried, paint a light layer of clear gesso to reduce the stickiness that might linger after the matte medium has dried.

Place a book board onto the paper beginning on the far-left edge. Trace around the edge to make the same shape. Four will be full-sized squares and two will be half of the squares. For two of the squares, position them over the stamped image so that where they would meet is about at the halfway point on the image. When you cut the boxes out, you should end up with three plain squares, one square that contains the top half of the image, and the other square that contains the bottom half of the image. Edge each square and half square using the ColorBox Ink Pad.

Take the book boards and paint them black using either paint or gesso. You will need to cover the back, front, and edges. Allow them to dry completely.
Glue one square to a board matching in size using the matte medium. Use your brayer to ensure that the paper is adhered flatly to the board.
Cut a hole in each corner of each paper-covered book board. Be sure to align them with corresponding boards. Line up the boards with the four full-sized in the middle and a half-sized at each end.
Weave the ribbon so that the ribbon hides on the back (black) side and cups the corners on the front side. When you reach the top, tie a knot to create a hanger and continue through the remaining holes. At the bottom, tie the pieces together, then shred the ends so that you have a messy fringe.

To bundle up the mini journal, fold the bottom half piece up so that the black side shows, bend the next board back so that its back side touches the next board’s back side, fold the top part of the stamp to the bottom part, then flip the top half piece onto the pink board so that the black side shows. This should result in the knot being in the front now. Wrap the ribbon around the back and then again. This should result in the ends of the ribbon placed on the side where the fringe is. Tie a knot so that a loop remains to help you untie the ribbon when you are ready.
You may want to embellish the black half boards. In my case, I glued a small flower to a mini wooden clothes pin and clipped it to the ribbon.
Anne Marie

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