Writer's Notebook- I Got That Covered

 I ‘ve Got That Covered

    I’m currently on the lookout for a larger container in which to store my ever expanding collection of writer’s notebooks. Tomorrow I will begin the search in earnest by visiting some antique stores in the hope of finding a suitable container. I want something that has character. It must also be sturdy like a chest-a wooden chest perhaps.

    I have notebooks stacked around my study at present and recently I have been pondering their characteristics -their design and size. My notebooks compiled across almost forty years are many and varied. Lined and unlined. Thick and thin. Large and small. A recent notebook was made from pulverized rock, not paper. It was appreciably heavier and the pages had a smoothness that reminded me of plastic surfaces. It provided a unique writing experience.

     When it comes to covers on those notebooks the uniqueness of each notebook is immediately drawn into sharp focus. The acquisition of each new notebook presents an opportunity for me as the writer to stamp some individuality upon the book’s outer face. It is at this stage a range of options and choices come my way as the writer.

    On occasions, I have chosen to leave the cover unadorned. I figure the cover as presented is striking enough. One such notebook was one I received as a gift from my wife, purchased from ‘Manufactus,’ a wonderful notebook shop in the heart of Rome. It would have been sacrilege to add anything to the notebook’s rich, black leather cover and gold embossing. The notebook possessed an inherent beauty and when held in my hand, unique appeal. Its leathery smell, intoxicating.


    

This being said, many of my notebook covers have been decorated with an assortment of materials. Magazine cut outs, selected photographs, headlines, quotes and stickers in order to create a personal collage. I always enjoy organizing and shaping the various element into a pleasing, hopefully eye catching arrangement before gluing the pieces into their assigned places. When we decide to personalize our notebook covers in this way, we immediately assume ownership of that notebook, endowing it with unique characteristics. 

    These various additions make a statement regarding out interest and identity as the writer. The work of scissors, glue and personal choice are integral in this process of personalization. 


    It is also possible to create a collage cover electronically and then print it off before gluing it onto the notebook. I designed a traditional bookplate and used that as my personalized cover on my current notebook. I enjoyed the creative process that this entailed.


    I must admit, I generally like to decorate the back of my notebook too. I like them to be totally mine. A notebook, not to be confused with anyone else’s. Well, that pretty much covers it…




Comments

  1. Funny you mention this- I leave my notebook covers blank, but recently bought mod podge, thinking I might make a change. I am not arty, so it will be collage- now to start collecting.

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    1. Erica, it is most gratifying when your words spark some deliberation and potential action. Enjoy the creative buzz of designing a notebook cover collage!

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  2. I have, like you, quite a selection of notebooks. When I use marbleized notebooks with my students, we always start the year by decorating them. A friend/colleague once showed me how you can cover them with packing tape and it gives them a durable, glossy finish. I got a new student last week, a 2nd grader. When we decorated her journal, she said, "Finally, I get to express my creativity!" This little girl is definitely gifted!

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    1. I often cover the notebook collage in clear tape to protect and preserve the design, as you do Margaret. I love the clear sense of agency as a writer your new student displays.

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  3. Love that you decorate the covers. I have been using more stickers lately. Thank you for including pictures.

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    1. I think pictures add to the story, so they were a must in this instance.

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  4. I have been thinking about decorating my journal of late. In the past I just write inside and leave the cover as is. You are making me re-consider this choice. How much fun will that be?

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    1. I am pleased my post has prompted you to consider your options. Enjoy...

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  5. Thank you for sharing your covers. I tend to use stickers, but I would like to be more creative. I am new to notebooking, but I will need a place to keep/store them. I would love to see what you find.

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    1. My pleasure Heather. I like your desire for creativity. I'm sure it will deliver delight. I am continuing my search for a suitable container for my notebooks. It's out there. I just have to keep searching...

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