Friday, November 7, 2014

Rustic “Bark” Journal

©Michele Emerson-Roberts 2014

I love creating journals and handmade books both for myself and to give as gifts. The books are always a big hit with the recipients.  I had several males in mind when creating these very rustic small books. Each book is one of a kind and is made with handmade paper with dried leaf and grass inclusions. The books go together quickly so it is easy to make them in batches of 10 or more at a time. I can’t wait to see the smiles on their faces when they open their gifts. Maybe I can find some of those “stick” pencils to go with the books!

These make the perfect gift for the hunter, fisherman, hiker, bird watcher or gardener in your life!


  • Any of the Arnold Grummer™ paper making kits
  • A sunny window
  • Blender, cello sponges and soft towels
  • Scissors
  • Scraps of white, ivory or off white paper (think junk mail, etc.)
  • Dried leaves and grasses, small pieces of bark
  • Chip board (I used pieces of cereal box) for the covers
  • Awl, needle tool or Japanese Screw Punch (JSP)
  • Thin twine/cord for binding
  • Large eyed needle
  • Beacon Quick Grab™ Adhesive

  1. Follow the directions found in any of the Arnold Grummer™ paper making kits to create numerous sheets of handmade paper.
  2. When the papers are dry, fold and tear each sheet into half (or quarters for smaller books) leaving the rough torn edge.
  3. Fold the pages in half, nestle several sheets together (this is a signature). You will make as many signatures as you wish for each book. 
  4. Use the awl, needle tool or JSP to place holes in the signatures. Bind the book with a simple pamphlet stitch (also called saddle stitch). If needed, refer to this quick how-to video -  
  5. Attach the small pieces of bark to the outside of the book covers with the Beacon QuickDry™ adhesive.

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