Happy Mail

A thank you gift for Kathy

I’m sending this little bit of happy mail to one of the ladies who helped me come up with a business name.

She suggested Blue Willow and even shared a picture for inspiration. I loved the name but it’s actually the name of a type of pattern, so I didn’t want anyone to be confused with that.

I wanted to thank Kathy anyway since I would have taken that name otherwise.

She said she liked flamingoes so I went for a pink theme and included a few flamingo images.

Hope she likes it.

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Blogging, Junk journal

The new name for my blog/business

After going round in circles trying to think of a blog/business name, I was inspired to do a poll by Amy L Sauder’s post where she got people to vote for the title of her book.

She wrote about how the comments people wrote in response to possible titles helped her choose the title.

I thought this was a great idea, so I did a poll in three groups I’m part of. One is an international junk journal group, one is an Australian junk journal group, and one is my group of blog readers.

At first it was a bit confusing because each group had a majority vote for a different name. The international group liked Journal Heaven, the Aussie group like Junk Journal Treasures, and the blog group like Sapphire Slippers.

But across the three groups, Willow was the clear second winner. And when I read the comments, the people who chose Willow mentioned the vibe I was after and they resonated with my willow story.

This showed me Willow had to be in the name because it connected with these words I was after: magical, wonder, beauty, whimsical, special memories, home. This is what journals are all about for me.

Unfortunately, Willow was already taken. People gave me lots of suggestions. One that I really loved was Blue Willow but it was taken. As was Willow Pages and other variations.

But one lady came up with Willowbound and I loved it. I tested it out with the three groups via another poll, and 62 out of 83 people voted for it. Their comments also showed me it was the winner. One in particular was the clincher: ‘Willowbound gives me a unique feeling since it isn’t a real word. I like it, it opens the imagination.’

I wanted unique and I definitely wanted imagination. The willow I played under was a place where I dreamed up fantasy lands and became a princess acting out my own stories. It was a place of imagination and that’s what a journal is for me too. A journal can be anything you want it to be.

So Willowbound Journals it is – yay!!!!

I’ve changed my blog and social media accounts to Willowbound Journals and I’m getting ready for an official launch.

I’m in the process of designing a logo. Here’s a bit of an inside look at some designs I’ve been working on:

I’m going to have a simple wreath of willow leaves with a ‘W’ in the middle.

I was testing out lots of ways to write the letter. I showed them to the junk journal groups and they helped me decide.

The winning ‘W’  is the one in bold:

This is exciting because it’s actually a free font that is also available on WordPress. It’s Tangerine.

I may change it later, but for now this is just something simple I can put on a business card.

I’m going to play around with colours and styles and might do another poll for the logo.

Anyway, just wanted to keep you updated. The official launch will happen as soon as I get this logo done and do some things with my shop and blog.

I’d like to get a giveaway ready for the launch and put all my journals on sale to  help me get started. I also want to have some freebies available and just need to work out how I want to organise my blog with this new direction I’m taking.

As mentioned in a previous post, I want to start doing regular interviews, tutorials, giveaways, journal process posts, and general thoughts on writing, creating, and memory keeping.

I hope to create a blog space that is full of inspiration, beauty, creativity, and encouragement.

Embellishments

Made my first embellishment sale

Oh my goodness, I’m so excited! After sharing my stamp tags, I got a message from a lady asking if she could buy nine of them. Wow!

I’m sending these nine tags to her tomorrow.

I’m so glad people like them and I love that I get to share them and they can be part of other people’s creations.

Plus this is hopefully the start of my online shop where people can buy journals and embellishments that I make.

So thankful! I’m going to get crafting and make more of these tags.

Embellishments

Mini tutorial and giveaway: Stamp tags

After being inspired by Liz’s stamp tags at The Paper Project and buying a bulk lots of cancelled stamps, I made my own collection of stamp tags.

I bought 50 tags from Carefully Crafted on Etsy. I could have made my own but I just wanted to get straight into making these stamp tags and took the lazy option.

Then I experimented with layering. I added different laces and trims to the tags, some I added paper or ribbon. Some of them I coffee-dyed with a spray bottle before the layering was applied; others I coffee-dyed after the layering.

Then I added a button and ribbons and attached them using a garment pin. I got a bulk lot of garment pins from A Tattered Dream on Etsy.

I made about 33 tags and love how they turned out.

Here’s a video of the tutorial and a look at all the tags:

Let me know what you think of the tags.

If you like them and would like to own one, just let me know your favourite one and it could be yours.

Since I make things in bulk and gifts is my love language, I hope to do many more giveaways with the embellishments and journals I make, plus happy mail.

I’ll also try to do more tutorials, but I apologise for my amateur video doing my first YouTube tutorial and giveaway. I’ll hopefully get better at this.

Please subscribe to my channel if you like what I make and want to follow my journaling journey and to for more tutorials and giveaways.

Also, let me know if there’s something you want me to share.

I just love junk journals so much!!!

Junk journal

Pink Vintage Lady – Experimenting with lace and trims

I’m such a newbie at this lace and trim thing but I really want to get better at it because I’ve seen such stunning journals with fabrics, laces, and trims.

I’m also still experimenting with collaging and different ways to embellish pages.

I went for a vintage and pink theme with this one with a variety of pages interspersed with coffee-dyed pages.

I used some ephemera from Tim Holtz and a scrapbook paper pad and some vintage pages from happy mail.

I’m still experimenting with glassine bags and envelopes too:

Here I tried embellishing a page with a napkin for the first time:

And I’m also experimenting with collaging on pages without tuck spots or pockets but just for the sake of making the page look pretty:

This is a tag I got from happy mail. Love it!

I’m too worried about making the journal too chunky so I’ve decided for my next journal I’m going to experiment with fewer pages so I can embellish each one.

Here’s a flip-through:

Junk journal

The first junk journal I’ve bought (from Paper Pixie)

Yay, I’m so excited to have bought my very first junk journal made by someone else.

I’m especially excited about this one because it started my paper bag journal series. It’s inspired me so much and been a big part of my journaling journey.

It’s just stunning with so much ephemera packed into it and so many creative ideas.

Like the page on the left is actually an envelope that opens and the page on the right looks so cool with a napkin stuck to it:

This page has one of the envelopes that inspired the napkin envelopes I made:

Almost ever page is filled with ephemera or has something interesting on it but there’s still lots of writing space.

This is m favourite page in the whole book because of the collaging with that mini paper bag. I love that you can see through it to the mason jar that you can pull out of it. I love the laces and trims and the collage on the bag. And I love the piece of folded paper behind it with extra journaling space:

There is just so much I love about this journal. I love all of the pages but here are some of my other favourites:

This last photo shows a mini journal in that lace pocket. How cool is that!

This is such a special journal for me and I’m so thankful I actually own it. I love Paper Pixie’s work and I have to pinch myself that I have one of her journals.

I look forward to building up my collection of journals from other people since I’ll only buy ones that really mean something to me.

I’m excited to start using this journal, personalising it, and making it my own. I’m not sure how I’m going to do that yet because I don’t usually use journals with so much already in them. But I’ll have fun working that out as I’m a big believer in journals being used and making them your own.

I’m also excited to get crafting away and use this journal as more inspiration in my own journals.

Here’s a flip-through of the amazing journal if you’d like to see this work of art. Forgive my awkwardness, still not used to filming myself and talking on camera.

Junk journal

Reusing music paper and napkins

I’ve been making some embellishments for junk journals, and here I’ve been working on envelopes.

I used music paper from a series of music books I got from an op-shop to make the envelopes.

Then I used a bunch of napkins in my stash. All of them except for three I got in happy mail from people all around the world.

I’m so glad because I live in a small country town and can’t find pretty napkins like these.

I always ask for blue birds, blue butterflies, and peacocks so I’m thankful for these treasures from people.

I love how the envelopes turned out. I made about 70. Yep, I do things in bulk.

Here’s a video I filmed of the envelopes if you want to know a bit more about the process and see them in more detail:

What do you think?

Junk journal

Vote for my new journal blog and business name

Thanks so much to everyone who commented on my previous post asking for help with a new name.

After doing three polls in various groups I’m part of, I’ve narrowed it down to two-ish options and I’m stuck because my heart wants one option but my head thinks the other option might be wiser.

Willow resonated with most people and I really want to include that word because of what it represents: wonder, precious memories, home – all ideas that also capture what a journal is about for me.

Willow Journals is already taken, as is Willow Pages and variations. But Willowbound was suggested, or Willowbound Journals. What do you think?

The other option is Silk Journals because I’m also a writer, my email is wordslikesilk, and I self-publish memoirs through Words Like Silk which I hope to turn into a writing business one day.

Words Like Silk is about the love and power of writing to help people. It’s also about self-expression, creativity, using your voice, and sharing stories, in general. Through it I’d love to have branches like writing courses, a stationery line, storytelling through art, etc.

So I could have things like Silk Journals, Silk Stationery, Silk Art, etc. Or I can use a specific name that is more meaningful to each branch that captures what it’s about for me, like Willowbound for journals.

Either way, Words Like Silk will be the umbrella, but do I go with the generic, easy Silk option or the more meaningful but less simple, unique name option?

Another thing to consider is Willow has resonated with a lot of people, but I’m not sure if Silk Journals on its own even resonates with people.

My heart is with Willowbound because of the meaning behind it, but Silk might be the wiser choice in terms of business and branding.

What do I do? Argh! Haha, at least I’ve narrowed it down. Any help would be super appreciated.

Embellishments

Cancelled stamp haul

I bought a bulk lot of stamps to make stamp embellishments.

I bought 80 but the lady threw in quite a few extras and I got over 100.

They also came with a lovely card.

I got these stamps specifically to make tag embellishments inspired by Liz at The Paper Project.

Here’s the first tag embellishment I made for one of my journals:

Love it!

Will definitely make more of these.

Here’s the video that inspired me: