Altered Book Cover

Altered book cover by iHanna of

My art journals these days are Altered Books, vintage coffee table kind of books with pictures. Books about earth, cultures and animals around the world. The covers on these babies are boring brown or orange fabrics, so lately I’ve been trying to spruce them up a bit.

Altered book cover with roses
Art Journal #7

These are photos of my last finished Art Journal/Altered Book project. I added gesso to the cover and decoupaged roses all over the front piece. I think it looks very shabby chick in these picture:

Decoupage cover

Shabby chick altered book cover.

But after a while with pink roses I felt this cover was too stylish, a bit too romantic for the messy content of my altered book perhaps. I wanted more mess, to ruff it up a bit. The covers are still shabby, but in a more mixed media way I think. I still like them but now they feel more as one with the content.

I’ve added crayons, metallic tape, stickers and some dots of acrylic paint!

Adding glitter
And glitter! A girl needs a bit of glitter in her life!

Here you can see the finished front of the cover together with my new art journal:

Art Journal #7 & #8
I’ve started in my newest art journal (I think it is #8) but I haven’t decorated the cover at all yet. I just wrote the titel of my journal: Bedtime stories (because I create it in my bed).

Altered book cover with roses

It took me a while to get comfortable enough to touch the covers. My first journals are not decorated at all on the outside. I kind of wanted to keep the “secret” within. Now I don’t need to keep my collages only on the inside. I like that. How do you decorate your art journals?

Art Journal no 7 altered book by iHanna of
I absolutely love photos of the exterior of altered books, if you have taken any post them to your blog and let me know, I’d love to come and have a look!

Doesn’t it look like a treasure?

Noteworthy: I’m doing NaNoWriMo right now, my Wordcount right now: 20.500!

Altered Book Cover made by iHanna

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17 Responses to Altered Book Cover

  1. Martha says:

    I absolutely LOVE your journal cover! But then, I love all things shabby chick. I use composition books for my written journals and always cover them with collaged creations, like I did here.
    BTW, I love your blog, and have a link to it on my site.

  2. Fiona says:

    Love the cover – my kind of thing. I like to use altered books too.

  3. MissKoolAid says:

    I love it. Very yummy looking! I love the sight of all those pages with so many colours and textures. Just a question, did you glue pages together in your book before working in it to make them stronger?

  4. I totally agree about the glitter – I’m currently working on a painting which says about the need of glitter in our lives! *^v^*
    Decorating the covers of the journals is a great way to extend what’s inside, I haven’t done it with my current journal because it has a nice cover with old photos on it, but I may do it with my next journal, which is a year calendar and has a boring dark blue cover.

  5. Michelle says:

    Your journal looks great! It was super idea to use decoupage technique!

  6. louise says:

    I haven’t created an altered book for such a long time… always so rewarding.

    Happy working, g

  7. gracia says:

    (oops, that was actually from me…)

  8. Kristina says:

    Hi Hanna: I love these altered journals. Just saw an article on Craft zine on repurposing books and now am plotting a future project…yours are beautiful!

    Thanks for your kind comment on my article on bicraftuality… I have the photos posted on my flickr page as well and you might be able to see better detail there if interested.

    Kristina’s photos!

    I’ll be keeping an eye out for your book… ;-)


  9. Madde says:

    Hanna du är så bra. Jag har också en liten bok men det är så ful om man jämför med din :) Fina bilder också, man blir alldeles glad, som vanligt!!

  10. dawnhouser says:

    this book is insanely wonderful. the photos make me want to jump in & hide in the pages. good job, girl!

  11. maikki says:

    Fantastiskt! Jag gillar kreativa id?er. Det g?r mig s? v?l till mods och lycklig att g?ra om saker, ?teranv?nda och g?ra nytt av s?dant som ?r skr?p f?r andra.

  12. Tammy says:

    Hanna: I like the idea of creating not only inside but on the covers of altered books. I’ve not ventured down that path but now I’m anxious to try!!! And just curious ~ do you put sealant or final coat of gel medium on top of the final coat on the cover? Love your blog and your artwork!

  13. iHanna says:

    Thanks for all your lovely comments!

    I never seal pages inside the book but for protection because I really put my journals to use I’ve sealed the cover with acrylig glossy medium. It works fine! Let me know if you try altered books, and have fun with it!

  14. Nelly says:

    Hi!……congratulations by your job, like me. bye, bye..from Per?.

  15. Pingback: iHanna’s Blog » Blog Archive » Altered book tutorial

  16. anna maria says:

    I’m reading this 5 years after you posted it, but what the heck!
    Here’s a link to the cover of my latest journal
    Love your blog and all the interesting info I’m finding here.
    May 2013 be full of art and love!

  17. Hanna says:

    Så fiiint!!!! Jag blir alldeles lycklig och super glad att ha hittat din sida!!!!! Jag börjar på min första art journal gjord på gammal bok idag och du bara överöser med fantastisk inspiration, Tack för att du delar med dig av alla fina tips och tricks!!!!!

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