Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Making Letterbox Journals



We've gone geocaching many times & decided it was time to try out letterboxing.

The first thing we each needed for our letterboxing adventures were journals. Of course, there's always the option of buying a journal. But I like the cost of making our own much better, so that's what we did.

We used the instructions at Layers of Learning.


:: The Cover ::
I tore paper bags into a rectangle shape. Then the kids crumpled the rectangle.

Next they rubbed crayons on the crumpled paper.

When they were done coloring their cover, I wet them just a bit & put them in the oven to melt the crayon wax. Honestly, melting the was didn't work as well as I was hoping. Probably just doing the rubbing would have been good enough.

After the covers cooled we used stamps & oil pastels to decorate them.

For the most part, the kids went for an abstract look.

I opted for a minimalist approach.


 :: The Paper ::
I used regular copy paper. I folded 4 sheets in half & sewed a line on the crease. I made four sets of these for each journal.

I, then, stacked the four paper sets together &, using a hammer, nailed a hole through the stacked paper. Each place I needed a hole for sewing the cover & paper together I used the hammer/nail technique. This section is described much better at Layers of Learning.


 :: Sewing the Cover & Paper Together ::
Next, I played around with where exactly I wanted to place the paper on the cover. Once I figured that out I placed the paper on the cover. Then, came the hard part.

Why this was so difficult, I don't know. It seems so simple. But, I had a heck of a time with it.

I liked the look of the binding on the example at Layers of Learning, so I wanted to replicate it.

I used embroidery thread and a needle to sew the cover & paper together. The outside turned out the way I wanted, but the first & last pages don't look too tidy.

The middle pages look ok.

Our completed journals.

I had originally thought I would sew buttons on the front cover to help hold the cover closed. But, after a couple days the journals quit trying to open on their own. So, I didn't mess with it.


We've gone letterboxing a couple times & so far these journals are working out great.


1 comment:

  1. Letterboxing is so much fun, and you are right, you really need a good journal for it. Yours turned out great. They will be a treasure to keep forever. We plan to do some letterboxing this summer.

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