Spruce Up Plain Journals with Inspirational Quotes

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Journals are all about self-expression, so shouldn't journal covers reflect who you are as well? Here are some creative ways to customize plain journal covers using inspirational quote printables from eHow, along with some basic art materials. With journal covers this inspiring, just imagine how creative you'll be on the inside pages.

Inspirational journal covers
(Jonathan Fong)

Things You'll Need

  • Plain journals
  • Quote printables from eHow (found at http://www.ehow.com/new/quote-photo-shares/)
  • Burlap
  • Scrapbook paper
  • Colored card stock
  • Twigs
  • Silk floral embellishments
  • Buttons
  • Washi tape
  • Spray adhesive
  • Craft glue
  • Sports pages
  • Baseball fabric patch
Step 1

Find journals with plain covers. They are inexpensive, and their simplicity provides a clean canvas for you to personalize.

Plain journals
Jonathan Fong
Step 2

Download your desired quote printables from eHow. Measure the dimensions of your journal, and size the printables to fit using image software. Print them either on your inkjet printer at home or a laser copier at a copy store.

Quote printables
Jonathan Fong
Step 3

Using spray adhesive for an even coverage, glue a piece of burlap onto the cover. Rather than cutting a piece that is the exact size as the cover and then trying to align it, glue a piece that is larger the the cover and then trim it afterwards.

Glue burlap to the cover
Jonathan Fong
Step 4

Trim the printable featuring Mary Oliver's quote and the bird. Glue it on top of a brown piece of card stock that is a quarter inch larger on all sides. The card stock serves as a mat that helps frame the printable. Glue both pieces on top of the burlap. You can use regular craft glue or a spray adhesive.

Layer the printable and card stock on top
Jonathan Fong
Step 5

At the bottom of the printable where the bird is resting on the branch, glue some twigs to dimensionalize the branches. Then glue some small fabric scraps next to the wimgs to make leaves. You can either cut apart the petals of a silk floral embellishment or just cut some green fabric or felt.

Embellish with twigs and leaves
Jonathan Fong
Step 1

Adhere strips of washi tape vertically on the journal cover. Trim the edges with scissors so they are flush with the cover.

Adhere strips of washi tape
Jonathan Fong
Step 2

Trim the printable featuring Walt Disney's quote. Glue it on top of a piece of card stock that will frame the photo. Play with the shape of this background piece of card stock. The one in the example is an arrow to reflect the quote's message of "doing" something. Glue both pieces on top of the washi stripes.

Layer the printable and card stock
Jonathan Fong
Step 3

Layer silk floral embellishments, which you can find in the scrapbooking aisle at crafts stores, and glue them to the cover. Top off the flowers with a button in a contrasting color.

Add floral and button embellishments
Jonathan Fong
Step 1

The printable with the Babe Ruth quote is the inspiration for this baseball-themed journal. Use spray adhesive to apply a page from the sports section of the newspaper on the cover. As with the burlap, it is easier to glue on a piece that is larger than the cover and then trim it afterwards.

Glue sports section of newspaper to cover
Jonathan Fong
Step 2

This next step is optional, but adds another fun layer to the baseball theme. Find striped scrapbook paper that is reminiscent of vintage baseball uniforms and glue a piece on top of the newspaper.

Apply scrapbook paper on top of sports section
Jonathan Fong
Step 3

Trim the quote printable and layer it on a piece of red card stock that is about a quarter inch larger on all sides. Glue both pieces on top of the journal.

Layer the printable and card stock
Jonathan Fong
Step 4

Crafts stores typically have pre-made patches of various sports motifs. Select a baseball patch and glue that on top of the printable.

Glue on a baseball patch
Jonathan Fong
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