DIY Journals + A July 4th Giveaway

Yay for a four-day week (For us Americans, as least, who celebrate July 4th)!! :D As a little celebration of the day off and also for the fact that I hit 200 Instagram followers recently (wee!!), I hosted a little giveaway on

my feed

. Feel free to throw your hat in the ring - it'll only take you a quick comment for a chance to win these goodies:

Okay, once you've done that, we're going to move on to the next order of business... DIY journals! I've gotta tell you, I just would NOT be able to function without my handy dandy journal/planner. Every single thing I think of gets written down in here, from to-do lists (though I rarely check off every item on the day it's supposed to be done by, whoops), to meal plans for the week, and even my Instagramming schedule (yeah, I'm a little crazy like that). I go through one of these at least two of these every year, and they're with me for so much of my day, so I make a point to differentiate them and make them fun to look at!

As you can see, some of my past notebooks have been really simply covered with some pieces of washi tape and stickers. Super simple, and I'm sure that's an easy idea that you don't need a tutorial for. But my most recent notebook is the one on the right, which I'm going to walk you through today!

This notebook is really unique because I made my own stencil with the exact phrase I wanted. I think "One day at a time" is so appropriate for a daily planner, and is a great reminder to myself not to worry so much, so that's what I went with. Of course, you can choose any phrase you want!

Here's the complete list of supplies you'll need:

  • Custom stencil with phrase of your choice. I cut mine with my Silhouette out of cardstock.
  • Notebooks that are good for DIY covers. I use Moleskine Cahier notebooks, which come in packs of three (so they're a great deal!). I like the gridded pages, because they're good for making my own weekly calendars.
  • Modeling/embossing paste
  • Something to spread the modeling paste with.
  • Embossing powder. I'll be using Ranger Liquid Platinum, which I have to say is my new FAVORITE embossing powder. It melts sooo smooth and beautiful.
  • Heat gun (not pictured)

Once you have all your supplies, the first thing you'll want to do is to position your stencil where you want it on your notebook. I decided to have it read on the long edge, sideways. You can tape it down temporarily with washi tape if you want, but I actually covered the back of mine with spray adhesive so that all the little parts would stay in place better. 

Once you have the positioning right, spread a smooth layer of modeling paste on top. Try not to make it too thick!

Here's how it should look once you take off your stencil - kind of like frosting, mmmm ;)

While it's still wet, shake on a whole lot of embossing powder...

...and shake off the excess.

Okay, now you want to let this dry completely. It'll take at least a few hours. When that's done, then you can heat set it and watch how beautiful the embossing powder becomes. And with the modeling paste under, there's tons of texture, and it won't crack!

Beautiful and shiny :)

Hope you enjoyed this tutorial! Enjoy your short week and the holiday weekend!! :D