Creative Journaling Toolkit – Journaling Supplies: Tools to add imagery and details

Of course, it’s not necessary to add imagery and details to your journal pages, but I like to add them. Simple patterns, colours and shapes can help you express yourself in ways that you can’t with words. They can help to tie aspects of a page together to make it more visually appealing. And they can be fun!

Washi Tape

Washi tape is colourful, patterned tape that is usually made out of paper, so it is easy to tear. The adhesive is not too sticky, so it can be removed without damaging the paper if you’re careful.

I love washi tape simply because it’s gorgeous and fun, and a simple way to stick images to your pages, add borders, titles, or just pretty details.

A word of warning – buying this stuff is addictive! I started with just a few and now have over a hundred rolls… whoops! So don’t say I didn’t warn you!



You can get stamps made of rubber and wood-mounted, clear plastic that stick to an acrylic block, foam, or you can even carve your own! I’ve carved my own out of linoleum, and even cut some out of foam.

Look for images that resonate with you and that you will use regularly.

You’ll also need an ink pad. These can be water based or alcohol based – some are more permanent than others, so check the packaging. There are lots of colours, but I mostly just use black.


Stuff to Stick in Your Journal

Magazine images

Another way to bring images into your journal is with magazine images.

Choose magazines that have images you feel instinctively drawn to – images that make you feel happy or inspired when you see them. I love magazines with images of happy people (not fashion models), homes and interiors, gardens and nature, desks and offices.

My favourite magazines are: Happinez, Flow, Australian Womankind, Life and Leisure (NZ magazine), Collective, Kindred Spirit, Psychologies Magazine. There are also some stunning magazines from Stampington and Company, like Bella Grace and Where Women Create, which I don’t have access to in NZ.

Magazines I don’t recommend are the tabloid mags that focus on the lives of celebrities – their relationships, weight loss, etc, or magazines such as Cosmo with models, fashion and beauty – these magazines are designed to make us feel crappy about ourselves, to make us feel like we are not good enough, which is exactly the feeling we DON’T want to evoke in our journals.

You can use anything for collage really – scrapbooking papers, junk mail bits, ticket stubs, journaling cards,

A few of my favourite magazines I use to add imagery to my journals
Happinez is my all-time favourite!

Collage elements

You can really use anything that you find interesting in your journal. If it’s paper (or fabric!) and can be glued in, use it! Here are some ideas:

  • Junk mail
  • Old book pages
  • Sheet music
  • Scrapbooking paper
  • Postcards
  • Greeting cards
  • Wrapping paper
  • Sewing patterns
  • Serviettes
  • Maps
  • Fliers
  • Ticket stubs

All these things are a great way to express yourself and add interest to your journal. In this way, your journal can also become part smashbook, part scrapbook and part journal. There are no rules!

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A pile of possibilities! Any of these things could be used in your journal. Here we have a sewing pattern, map, wrapping paper, napkin, sheet music, magazine cut-outs, a postcard, and a hotel do not disturb card

Get creative about what you can stick in your journal! There are many ways to add imagery and details, these are just a few of my favourites.