A Glitter to Grunge Journal Facelift

Whenever I visit my local craft store, I always visit the clearance area in the back before I leave. Sometimes, in all the picked-over jumble I find treasure. Like these amazing notebooks for only $2 each.

The original journal with glitter and butterflies

These Indy Girl craft paper notebooks are awesome. They have a really nice solid cover and 100 pages of natural brown craft paper bound in with a beautiful organza ribbon. The only drawback for me was the glittery, Victorian theme, and glued on butterflies.

Don’t get me wrong – I have nothing against glittery stuff, but I lean toward a more “grunge girl” vibe. That’s when I decided to pull out my embarrassingly large amount of scrapbook supplies and create a cover for my notebook. It was so fun and easy I decided to post this tutorial about how to do this project. And I liked the result so well, I plan to make up several more journals, with different themes, to put in my Etsy Store.

Step One: a little scraping and sanding to get the butterflies and glitter toned down and to prep the surface for glue.

Step Two: Choose some complementary decorative paper and decorative items. This can range from stickers, to ribbons, press on letters, rhinestones, and more. I chose some distressed florals and stripes to fit my Grunge Girl vibe. I really love the papers designed by Wild Asparagus. And since I was making a notebook for thought jotting and To Do lists, I chose stickers that related to my theme. A message that would give me positive reinforcement to get stuff done.

Step Three: Trace the cover shape on the back side of the paper, marking the spine fold lines. Trim the paper and score the fold lines. I also like to cut out contrasting strips of paper (1.5 to 2.5 inch wide) to glue on the edges in case the cover paper falls a bit short. I also needed to punch two holes in the spine for the ribbon to poke through when I reassembled the journal.

Step Four: I used plain white glue to glue the paper to the journal cover; making sure to spread it evenly with a paint brush and cover all of the edges. If you skimp on the edges your cover may peel up. I used heavy books to weigh down the cover while it dried. I recommend that you leave it to dry for a few hours before adding your decorations and retying the cover to the interior pages.

Here’s the Before and After pic. From glittery to grunge! I had so much fun with this project, I decided to make a few more with different themes. They are all girly and glam, but each one will have a different vibe. Hopefully there will be something that appelas to everyone, because I plan to put them up for sale in my Etsy store. Feel free to take a look!


3 thoughts on “A Glitter to Grunge Journal Facelift

  1. What a cleaver idea. Your instructions were very easily followed; I loved the step-by-step photos, too! Thank you for this journal facelift topic.

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