Thursday, September 14, 2017

DIY Gifts: Personal journals

The Christmas DIY has begun. I like to plan Christmas gifts for the adults on my list by theme. Last year's theme was Baskets of Plenty - I made gift baskets full of homemade and some store bought goodies. This year's theme is Read, Write, Relax. Of course nobody knows the theme except for me. I don't send out a message, "prepare yourselves for your Basket of Plenty." No. The theme is just a way for me to organize my thoughts and my spending. My first DIY share this season is for the Write part of Read, Write, Relax. 

I wanted to make personal journals. The thing I love most about this craft is that it requires so few materials. 

Necessary materials:
-permanent marker
-scrap paper

Optional materials:
-ruler, math set

The journals I used are from Dollorama and cost $3.50 each. They are textured on the surface.  I used silver and gold metallic Sharpies from Michael's which cost $7.99. The butterfly stencil I used cost $1.25 at Dollorama.  They do sell Sharpies at Dollorama but not the metallics.

What to do???
Even though letters are obviously involved, I do not consider this lettering. At all. Lettering is an art that takes loads of time and study. Nonetheless, you do need to prep for this. I sketched many ideas out on scrap paper before moving ahead with the "good copy" in permanent marker. 

Because of the textured surface, the marker does run a bit. Keep this in mind because you do not want to be doing any fine print or intricate designs with a big Sharpie on this surface. In addition, you may need to trace around the edges after any stenciling in order to hide the bleeding (see butterfly below). 

Once you have come up with and rehearsed your design you can move ahead to the final copy. DO NOT RUSH. Permanent marker is not forgiving. 

This is an uncomplicated project - but you may be surprised by how long you spend formulating and practicing your design.   Examples are posted below. 



  1. These are a great idea!
    I also pick a theme each year for Christmas gifts - this year it's puzzles!