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Art Journal Every Day: Paper Bag Book Cover

ArtJournalEveryDayLogo-150If you're new to Art Journal Every Day, there is a short introduction here.  All of the previous posts can be found archived here.  There is a flickr group for sharing right here.  Remember, it's just ten minutes of nourishing your creative self every day!  No need to finish anything or even like it.  If you've done some art journaling this week and you've blogged about it, or put it on flickr, please leave a link in the linky list at the end of this post.  Thanks!

The art journal that I love to use has one teeny tiny flaw.  I hesitate to mention it because in all other ways this art journal is perfection itself.  But, here it is: the cover is super absorbent and as you work in the journal it gets covered in all sorts of ink and paint and such.

It's not a big deal, and yet it does make me a little crazy.  

I have been using Glad Press'n Seal to stop the mess from getting to the cover.  It's an easy solution and works great.  But then my husband brought home a brown paper bag and a new idea sparked!

When I was in grade school we had to cover our borrowed text books so they wouldn't get damaged.  Every September my Mom would save the brown paper shopping bags and my Brother and I would sit at the kitchen counter and turn those shopping bags into text book covers.  I figured I could do a grown-up version of the text book cover for my art journal!  And I thought I'd take you along for the ride....

STEP ONE: Prepare the bag.

I cut the bag down one side and then cut off the entire bottom.

Once I had a large surface, I placed my journal on the bag and trimmed off the substantial excess on the right side.  (Be sure to leave some excess all the way around the journal, however.)

I removed the handle, which left a little scar:

But, no worries.  It won't show on the finished cover.

STEP TWO: Decorate the bag.

I chose to paint mine.  You could also stamp, stencil, doodle, or collage it (or even leave it plain).

STEP THREE: Fit it to the book.

Flip the paper bag over and trace around the journal.

Fold the top and bottom along those traced lines. Crease well.

Now, fold the sides in along the traced lines.  Don't crease well.

STEP FOUR: Insert book.

Place your journal onto the folded bag and slide one cover into the pocket you've created by folding.

Slide is all the way in, until the cover meets the crease you made in the bag.

Now, insert the other cover into the other end of the bag.

When you close the book, you'll notice that original crease line and the place the cover actually wraps around the book may be different.  That's why we didn't crease it well in step #3.  

STEP FIVE: Admire.

So that's it.  You should now have a beautifully fitting art journal cover!

Since we used absolutely no adhesive, if you're like me and use the same style and brand of art journal over and over, you can re-use this cover many, many times!  At least, that's my plan!

Here's the linky list for this week:

Thanks for stopping by!