Junk Journaling Guide

Junk Journaling: The Complete Guide

Making journal entries is usually recommended for those who are undergoing some form of personal development or those who are faced with health issues. It’s believed that a journal is an awesome tool that you can use for self-reflection.  Ideally, journaling can help you manage your thoughts, emotions and even reduce your stress levels.

If updating your journal everyday is a challenge, the best alternative is to keep a junk journal. But what is a junk journal?

What is Junk Journaling?

Junk journaling can be defined as the process of keeping a journal the way you like. Since it’s a combination of journaling and media art, there are no set rules for keeping it. A junk journal can also be described as a journal or book made up of different scrap papers that have been joined together.

The good thing about junk journaling is that you can use whatever you want. These journals are usually filled with pockets, tags, pages and other things that are used to add to the detail. Junk journal entries are used to capture a moment, experience or even inspirations. You don’t need to be a skilled artist to start a junk journal. You just need to know how to use a pair of scissors and glue sticks.

5 Reasons Why You Need a Junk Journal

1. Junk Journaling is Creative in Nature

Making junk journal entries is an undertaking that involves a lot of self-expression. Since this process takes a lot of time and concentration, it’s one of the best tools that you can use to manage anxiety. Its end result is not only calming but also rewarding and satisfying this making it the best.

2. Unlike other Journals, You Can Use This One the Way You Like

When it comes to making junk journal entries there are no set rules that you have to follow. Apart from writing on it, you can also use it to draw, paint, add clippings, paste your own photos and even put any image that you find around.

3. You Are More Likely to Refer to It

Since it’s your own creation you are likely to go back to it. For instance, your pictures and writings can remind you of a skill that you know. This can play a very important role especially when you are going through a very difficult time in your life.

4. You Can Use a Junk Journal to Keep the Things That You Love

You can also use your junk journal to keep things such as cards, pieces of art and photos that mean a lot to you. This will remind you of the time that you bought them hence you can always go back to them if you want to recall those special moments in your life.

5. A Junk Journal Can Be Quite Helpful Health Wise

If you want to save yourself from all the pain and anguish then you need to have a plan that you can use when things go wrong. This is actually where a junk journal comes in. By keeping a junk journal you can put in place plans, goals and even some words of encouragement to use when things are not right.

Junk Journaling Prompts To Try Out

Even if you are a good writer you need these journal prompts to get you thinking so that you can come up with your own ideas. Here are some junk journal writing prompts to try out:

  1. Write about the most interesting things that happen to you
  2. Write about something good that your pet did
  3. Write down the weather or temperature pattern of the day.
  4. Write about what you are thankful for
  5. Write about what you took for granted before but are now thankful for
  6. Write about why a particular scripture passage is helpful for you.
  7. Write about a relative or friend that you’ve lost and the moments that you spent together
  8. Write about a quote that you love and indicate why it’s important to you
  9. Write down a quote that makes you more determined
  10. Use tucks and flips to create extra information that you need to review
  11.  Create a habit tracker to help you get helpful journal ideas 
  12.  Create mini-budget sheets and fill them every day so that you can know how to budget
  13. Create a list of all the foods that you eat every day
  14. Create a log of the foods that you cook every week

How to Use a Junk Journal

There are several ways to use your junk journal. Here are some of them:

  1. Use your Journal as Photo Keeper. Since junk journaling is more or less like scrapbooking, you can use it for keeping photos, memories, tags, and cards among other things.
  2. You can use a junk journal as a travel journal. If you don’t have a travel journal yet then a junk journal can really help. You can use it to keep your travel maps, travel photos, and tickets that you collect along the way.
  3. Use it as a coffee table book. A junk journal can also be used as a coffee table book since it has intricate designs, envelopes, tuck spots and pockets to explore. This can give you a number of things to check out while you are taking a drink or grabbing a snack.
  4. You can use it as a wedding guest book. If you have a rustic theme for your wedding then this type of journal can really be helpful especially if you are looking for that extra touch.
  5. Use a junk journal as a spiritual or gratitude journal.  Just like other journals you can use your junk journal to reflect on your religion, what you are thankful for and the goals that you intend to achieve. With this journal, you can also include inspirational cards or pieces from a motivational book.

6 Essential Junk Journaling Supplies

This refers to the essentials that you need when you are starting out. They include:

1. Paper / Journal

Since this is the heart of journaling, it’s the first thing that you need. However, the kind of paper you need depends on the kind of junk journal you’re assembling. If you like you might just start with the paper that you have at hand. Later on you can go for some heavy-duty printer paper.

2. Printables

If you can’t get the most suitable paper the best thing to do is to go for printables. There are several online shops that sell beautiful printables and even journal kits that feature a number of themes.

3. Paper Trimmer

This is also another thing that you need. Although you can start with a pair of scissors, if you want to boost your level of accuracy then you need to choose a good paper trimmer. If you get one that can accurately cut multiple pages, the better.

4. Sewing Needle and Thread

If you want to make things easier for you, make sure you buy a sewing needle and thread.

5. Glue

Since you’ll also need to glue your cover, do not forget to buy glue. From regular school glue to other office glues make sure you choose something that works for you.

6. Pen and Rule

You also need to have a pen, pencil, and a ruler that you’ll use to make journal entries.

6 Tips for Writing in Junk Journal

1. Paste Some Lined Paper on Junk Paper

By gluing some lined or plain paper on junk paper you’ll get some space to write on.

2. Use Markers to Write on Page

If you have a contrasting color marker you can use it to write on the junk papers. This will make it easy to read your writings.

3. Write Around the Printings

You can also journal in the margins or around the images of your junk paper. This will provide you with a good space to write your story.

4. Write on the Back of the Tag

Since most journal tags have lines you can use the same for your writing.

5. Use the Pockets

Most Junk journals are fitted with pockets where you can keep your written stories or even insert letters. Also, if you insert an envelope you will create a good space to jot down your notes.

6. Jot Down Your Notes on Journaling Cards

Although journaling cards are beautiful on the front if you reverse them you’ll find a very good space to write on. Once you are through with your writing you can staple them onto the pages or keep them in an envelope before tucking them inside the pockets.

5 Best-Selling Junk Journaling Books

Best Junk Journaling Books

1. Creative Journaling

Creative Journaling A Guide ( Junk, Mixed-Media, And Travel Pages)
Product Highlights:
  • day, renee (author)
  • english (publication language)
  • 208 pages - 01/14/2020 (publication date) - rock point (publisher)

When it comes to journaling there are no set rules to follow. It’s upon you to create those words or designs. This creative journaling book will provide you with plenty of techniques to create beautiful layouts even if you don’t have enough supplies.

In this journaling book, you’ll learn things such as mixed media journaling, junk journaling and much more. The good thing about it is that it teaches you how to be creative.

2. Journal Sparks 

Journal Sparks Fire Up ( Writing, And Inventive Thinking)
Product Highlights:
  • storey publishing llc
  • language: english
  • book - journal sparks: fire up your creativity with spontaneous art, wild writing, and inventive thinking
  • neuburger, emily k. (author)
  • english (publication language)

If you want to fire up your creativity with wild writing, art, and creative thinking then this is the right journal book for you. As a visually adorable book, this journal book is full of creative ideas for collecting, experimenting and seeing what you want to try out. If you are just starting out, this is the best roadmap to use.

3. Layers of Meaning

Layers Of Meaning Elements ( Visual Journaling)
Product Highlights:
  • hadar, rakefet (author)
  • english (publication language)
  • 176 pages - 08/18/2019 (publication date) - independently published (publisher)

As a simple visual journal guide, Layers of meaning is one of the best junk journals out there. Made with so much attention to detail, this book not only has a great graphic but is also quite beautiful.

The depth of healing knowledge that you’ll find in this book is just amazing. If you have some interest in creative journaling, this is the right book for you.

4. Creative Journal

Ranger DYJ34100 Dylusions Dyan ( Journal, 11.375 By 8.25-Inch)
Product Highlights:
  • this journal is part of dyan reaveley's dylusions collection and is great for us with inks paints mediums water techniques and more (not included)
  • journal is 9x11-13/16x1 inch and features sixty-four 8-1/4x11-3/8 inch cardstock pages
  • also includes a folder on the inside cover to use for storage and an elastic band closure to keep all your work safe

Whether you are new to journaling or you are looking for something solid then Creative Journal is the right one for you.

Since it’s made from high-quality materials, this book comes with several pockets that you can use to store your papers, notes, and photos. Overall it can be described as a great journal at an affordable price.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I have to be an artist to practice junk journaling?

No. Just like other types of journaling you don’t have to be an artist or skilled to make junk journal entries. Provided you are creative you can always fill your journal the way you like and use whatever you have. The key thing is to regularly update it. 

What are the main things that I need to keep a junk journal?

If you are just starting out you need supplies such as special papers, scrap papers, maps, music sheets, and postcards among others. You basically need to include anything that can boost your creativity and make you happy.

What do I use junk journals for?

The way you use your junk journal is entirely up to you. You can either use it to keep scraps or use it for things such as arts, journaling, wedding guest books, and planning.

How can I learn more about junk journaling?

There are plenty of YouTube tutorials that you can check out to learn how to create them. If you are creating your own journal you can check out websites such as Amazon where you’ll find a variety of books that will help you get your creative juices flowing.


There you have it, everything that you need to know about junk journaling. Since there is no right or wrong to make this journal you can always choose your style and make it the way you want. It’s all about creating something that makes you feel relaxed. If you do it well you’ll not only relieve yourself of stress but also enjoy your lifestyle.

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