Sunday, November 8, 2015

Tips for Using Old Books and Papers in Art Journaling

From time to time I receive questions from blog readers, Pinterest followers, Etsy customers, and members from groups I belong to. So I want to take some time throughout this month to answer some of them in a series of blog posts. I'll start with old books since so much of this started here for me.

The first time I made an altered book art journal I was hooked. I started going to book sales and buying books, making journals, using the book pages on my art journal pages, and stacking up books in my studio/office. I started my Etsy Shop, {found on brighton}, as a way to use up the books and leftover insides that were accumulating in my house.

So, what do I do with the book pages? It is quite rare that I make an art journal page where book text isn't peaking out of it somewhere, in some way. I love the look of book text in my backgrounds peaking out through subtle layers of gesso or paint.

I like to cut shapes and letters out of painted book paper.

Or make mosaics.

So these are some of the ways I use old books and book paper in my art journaling. Altered book journals and themed paper packs are available in my Etsy shop.

Are there ways you use books or book paper in your art journaling different than the ways I listed?

30 Day Blogging Challenge Day 7. I missed posting yesterday, so now they are not consecutive. But I press on with the challenge!


  1. I love looking at your work. It's so inspiring

  2. I really love how you use the painted pages to make letters and display text. I like to use the pictures out of books that I alter and sometimes words as well. If a photo or words grabs me I keep it aside in a folder. I do this with magazine pages too.

  3. I was thinking of making me a big pile of papers to pull from that in this style. I was wondering, could I do a whole sheet of watercolor paper for later use? Or could I just paint some book paper to use for later?

    1. I actually do both, Cody. I will cut watercolor paper in the size of the journals I am using and cover them with book paper and gesso, then they are ready for art journaling as I need them. I will also paint a bunch of book papers at one time and set those aside for future use. Hope that helps answer your question. Thanks for asking!