• Helen Colebrook

What's the Point of a Junk Journal?



Over the years I have received lots of emails and messages with questions about journaling, different types, styles, what to write about, etc. However, the one type of journal that always prompts the most questions is the junk journal.


What Even is a Junk Journal?


A junk journal is typically a book made up of all different types of papers and material, that might otherwise have ended up in the bin - hence being called a "junk" journal.

It's such a great way to use up old papers, magazines, leaflets scrapbooking papers, envelopes and even wrapping paper.


How do you Use a Junk Journal?


At first glance a junk journal can seem nearly impossible to use. The pages are already full of text and images which makes them completely different to any type of journal or notebook that you might buy in a shop. It's one of my favourite types of journal and I believe there are lots of fun ways to turn it into a really lovely and useful journal. Down below, I will share some of my favourite ways to use a junk journal.


How do you Make a Junk Journal?


You can find my YouTube tutorial to make your own simple junk journal here. If you fancy trying your hand at creating a more detailed junk journal with three signatures sewn in, you can find my online class on Skillshare here. There are also lots of creators who sell junk journals if you would rather skip the "making" part.


Art Journaling


Art Journaling in a Junk Journal

Junk journals can be a really great place to add some art journaling and mixed media pieces. I use mine for acrylic paint, watercolour, gouache and swatching out new supplies. It's interesting to see how your art materials work on different types of paper.


Junk Journal Pockets


Junk Journal Pockets

Adding pockets to your junk journal is a really great way to create useable space. I include decorated tags that I write on the back of. You could also pop photos and tickets in here as lovely reminders of days out.


Keeping Cards & Letters



Do you receive wonderful cards and letters that you know you want to keep, but don't really know what to do with? Junk Journals are a great place to store them. I use washi tape to secure one edge of them to my page and it's so lovely to find them again when I look back through my old journals.


Create Writing Spots


How to use a Junk Journal

One of my favourite ways to use a junk journal is by creating writing spots. I find old pieces of scrap paper or sheets off a notepad and glue them onto my pages. You can still see lots of the beautiful book page behind, but you also now have a really useful writing spot for your thoughts and memories.



I really hope this blog post has given you a good feel as to what a junk journal is and provided you with some fun ideas as to how you can use them. One of my favourite things about junk journals is that there is no fear of a blank page! I also love that every single junk journal will be completely unique.


If you would like to see a flip through of my latest completed junk journal, you can find the video down below. I also have a chapter on junk journaling in my new book, which you can find here. I hope you're having lots of fun with your journals, Helen x



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