This post is all about junk journal ideas.
I will forever tout the benefits of journaling for a healthy mindset. Not many things beat it when it comes to self-reflection.
Today, I want to introduce you to a somewhat new style in the journaling world:
A junk journal!
We’ll look at what junk journaling is, how to use one, page layout ideas, themes galore, and more.
Plus, I’ve gathered a few junk journal ideas that are perfectly suited for beginners to help you get started.
Let’s get to it.
What Is a Junk Journal?
The difference between a junk journal and your typical journal style is that a junk journal is more of a multimedia affair.
Instead of simple pen and paper, it features all sorts of materials and ephemera. If regular journaling was like classic art, then junk journaling would be a 3-dimensional abstract masterpiece.
One of the benefits of junk journaling is that there are no limits to what you can put in this type of journal. If it fits on the page, you’re golden.
To some people, junk journals are more like a collection of all the materials that make life fun, just better organized.
This collection may consist of tickets from cherished concerts, preserved leaves and flowers, or even poems and standard journal entries.
The idea is to use whatever materials you can get, whether new or recycled, to express yourself or your thoughts on the topic you choose.
How to Use Your Junk Journal
As for what to write in a junk journal, there is no right or wrong thing to write. Your journal should serve you and your needs—not box you into a predetermined mold.
Make it as unique as you are!
If you need a starting point, here are a few junk journal examples:
As a Diary or Self-Discovery Journal
If you like to dig deep into your experiences, try using it as a self-discovery journal.
By creating a junk journal based on your life experiences, piecing together slivers of memories, you’re able to better remember what made those moments so special.
Plus, a diary-type format helps you reflect on your past so you can better yourself in the future.
As a Personal Planner
Some people use a junk journal as their personal planner. They use it to keep track of all of their to-do lists and appointments.
The nature of junk journaling allows you to store things like reminder cards, invitations to parties, and more within the journal itself.
As an Art or Travel Journal
If you are the artistic type, a junk journal is right up your alley. For creatives, journaling is much more fun when you can jazz it up and weave in different art techniques.
Here are some creative art journal ideas if you need some inspiration to get started.
You can also use as a junk journal to track your travels. Save bus tickets, airport memorabilia, photographs, and more!
As a Scrapbook of Memories
The format of junk journaling lends itself well to scrapbooking.
If you want your journal to double as an heirloom keepsake that you can pass down through your family someday, the junk journal style is a great choice.
10 Junk Journal Page Ideas for Inspiration
First things first, decide how you will bind your journal. There are so many great journal binding ideas out there, ranging from hand-sewn stitches to hole punches and ribbons.
The format you choose will somewhat limit what goes into the junk journal. That’s why you should settle on your binding from the beginning.
Ultimately, there are no real limits on what you can do, so don’t be afraid to have fun and try whatever strikes your fancy.
Here, I’ve collected 10 ideas for junk journal pages to help you familiarize yourself with all the possibilities. Bear in mind that your journal can feature a variety of page layouts at once.
You don’t have to stick to just one.
- The Pocket Page
Adding a pocket to a page allows you to include small objects and surprises within your journal. You can create pockets using small pieces of paper or plastic bags, so have fun with it.
Some junk journal pocket ideas that are just too adorable include decoupage pockets and pockets created from lace doilies.
- The Mixed Ephemera Page
The junk journal should be a hodgepodge of mixed media, so be free to put a lot of different objects on the same page. An example would be some concert tickets, a lanyard from the event itself, and a wristband, for example.
A few other junk journal ephemera ideas include postcards, sheet music, receipts, labels, and more.
- The Hidden Fold Page
This page layout is like one of those hidden doors disguised as a bookshelf. So cool! You can hide pages in a number of ways.
It allows you to hide occasional surprises, add a pop-up effect every so often, and generally add layers to a given page.
- The Banded Page
If you find yourself looking for a way to keep everything together, you can always use some sort of banding. It can also be used to highlight specific pages in order to make finding it that much easier.
Some call it a “belly band page.” You can use old scraps of fabric or clothing to form the band or even two bookmarks glued at each end.
- The Flaps Page
If you want to be able to flip to a specific section or page, you can make it easy with a flap page.
Making a flap page is similar to making a paper airplane. It’s just a matter of a few well-placed folds.
- The Cut-Out Window Page
Part of the charm of junk journaling is all the whimsical aspects that you can weave into it. Cut-out windows ramp up the style but are practical and functional too.
- The Decoupage Page
If you love to decoupage things, why not do it in your journal? All you need is a glue-water mixture, a sponge brush, and whatever materials you want to use such as paper cutouts, tissue paper, or stamps.
- The Classic Collage Page
Some pages just cry out for a collage. You can use just about anything. I personally like newspaper clippings and photos.
Think “montage in graphic form” and let your imagination run wild.
- The Tea-Dyed Writing Page
If you’re looking for a way to fill out a junk journal with more than plain white paper, try distressing a few pages to give them a vintage look.
It’s as easy as allowing the page to soak in some used tea leaves or coffee grounds!
- The Travel Memorabilia Page
I know we discussed a travel journal earlier, but you don’t have to dedicate your entire junk journal to traveling. You can simply insert a few travel pages here and there.
Besides photographs and written entries of your travels, you could also include map cut-outs, ticket stubs, boarding passes, stamps and postcards.
Creative Junk Journal Themes to Choose From
Still need some junk journal inspiration to help you bite the bullet? Think about your hobbies and favorite things in life. You could fashion your journal around one of those.
Here are some possible theme ideas to choose from:
- Fairy Tales
- Time periods
Ultimately, it’s your journal. The theme should be something that inspires and intrigues you so that journaling is joy, not a chore.
Junk Journal Supplies You Might Need
The type of junk journal materials you use will depend on what style you’re going for, but some supplies are pretty universal.
At some point, you’ll probably need glue sticks or tape to keep things in place. Glue dots work great as well.
Scissors are always nice to have on hand for creating cut-outs, bands, and more.
You can also use cellophane pages to cover the materials to better preserve them.
Any sticker that catches your interest works as well as washi tape.
If you write or draw directly in the journal, make sure you use high-quality utensils that won’t bleed through the pages. You could also keep some printable journal prompts on hand to get you going and keep you going.
The journal itself should have a somewhat thick cover to protect its contents.
If you need some junk journal cover ideas, try using the hardback cover of an old book that you don’t want anymore. You can also make one out of leather patchwork, a composition book or simply decorate a standard journal or binder.
A junk journal is defined by what you put into it. Think of it as a collection of thoughts or memories that help you remember who you are, where you’ve been, and where you want to go.
I hope these junk journal ideas inspire you to start your own!