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Make-Your-Own Art Journal Project

Time: 2-3 Class Periods
Difficulty: Advanced
Cleanup: Soap & Water

Corrugated Cardboard
12x18" Mixed Media Paper
String or Thread
Extra Strength Glue Sticks
Bone Folder
Needle Tool
Cover Decorating Materials (optional)
Decorative Paper (optional)
View Project Video

Create a unique journal with mixed media paper, muslin and corrugated board. This project also has an instructional video available!


  • Step 1
    Fold 25 sheets of 12x18" mixed media art paper in half to 9x12". A bone folder makes a nice, crisp edge. This example makes a 96-page journal.
  • Step 2
    Insert five sheets together to make a 10-page "signature". Do this four more times to make five 10-page signatures.
  • Step 3
    Make a hole template. Use a needle tool to punch holes in the center fold for all five signatures. The template keeps all the holes in the same place. The holes in this example are at 1/2", 2-1/2", 5", 7", 9-1/2" and 11-1/2".
  • Step 4
    String the five signatures together. See our YouTube video for a full description of this process.
  • Step 5
    Optional: Attach decorative "end paper" to the front and back pages. Wrap the spine with an additional sheet of mixed media paper to reinforce the binding. The signature book will be attached directly to the cover.
  • Step 6
    Cut an 18x26" sheet of muslin. The muslin will make a good, durable cover that takes decoration well. This example is painted with acrylic washes so the texture of the muslin can still be seen.
  • Step 7
    Cut a front and back cover out of corrugated cardboard that is 1/4" wider than the book. Cut out a spine as well. Glue the cardboard to the muslin leaving a 1/4" gap between the spine and the covers. Trim the muslin to 2" around the edge. Cut notches in the corners and glue the flaps down on the inside covers.
  • Step 8
    To finish, glue the end papers (or the first and last pages, if there are no end papers) to the corrugated cardboard inside the jacket.

Products Used