How to Create an Uplifting Grief Journal

How to Create an Uplifting Grief Journal

Album 9When you just want to send a bit of sunshine to someone going through a hard time, a grief journal is a great gift. Here’s how to create one of your own.

I love scrapbooking magazines of all kinds. Publications like Scrapbook Trends and Creating Keepsakes are a great place to start for ideas. That said, the cover of the April issue of Scrapbooks Etc. magazine was immediately an eye-catcher for me. Displayed on a cake stand in an array of spring colors are cupcakes made from bakers twine.

The corresponding article, “Baker’s Dozen,” showcases 13 tips for using bakers twine in various projects. From wrapping to jewelry to accents, I enjoyed every sample provided in this feature. But number six actually got me on my feet and to my craft table.

The sixth sample showed how to create frames using bakers twine on your scrapbook pages. I love the use in this sample, but it was actually the book itself that led me to start a project of my own. The artist created a beautiful mini album using what looked like cut out tags. I’ve been anxious to send a little happiness to a friend who’s grieving the loss of her beloved grandmother, and I thought this type of album would make a great grief journal for her to record memories and thoughts as she faces this hard time.


I used my Sizzix Big Shot machine with the scallop square die to make my pages, but you can use any shape or tag you have on hand. You’ll just need several similarly shaped pages. I also used a butterfly die to create the embellishment on the cover.*
Decorative paper
Card stock
Embellishments (like pearls or rhinestones)
Stamps and ink
Metallic paint and dauber
Jump ring
Crop-A-Dile or large hole punch

Project Difficulty: Easy
Time Required: 30 minutes to 1 hour

*All supplies used in this project are from Stampin’ Up!

Step One: Start by running your pages through the Sizzix. If you want the edges to line up and be uniform, die cutting them is a great option.

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It helps to measure your die and cut the paper to fit before running it through.

Step Two: After you have your pages cut, arrange them in any order you like. I alternated decorative pages with solid colors.

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Arrange the pages any way you like.

Step Three: Plan any embellishments. I used the Sizzix to create the butterflies for the front cover of the book.

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Create any embellishments you plan on using.

Step Four: Tear a piece of card stock by hand to fit the size of your sentiment. Then stamp it in any color of your choosing. I like to use darker colors for sentiments I want to stand out.

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Clear stamps are great for alignment.

Step Five: To add interest, sponge ink and metallic paint around the edges of the sentiment.

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If you don't have a sponge or dauber, just drag the ink pad along the edges of the paper.

Step Six: Punch a hole through your pages. If you don’t have a hole punch strong enough to go through all the pages at once, use your first hole and a pencil as a guide for subsequent holes so your pages will line up.

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Punch a hole for the jump ring.

Step Seven: Load your pages onto the ring and close it to see if any adjustments need to be made to your holes or pages.

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This ring is so versatile because you can add and rearrange pages as needed.

Step Eight: Add any finishing touches and adhere your elements to your cover. If you have bakers twine, the article mentioned above has brilliant ideas for how you can enhance the look of your book. I didn’t have any on hand, but I will for the next one I create! I also embellished by putting some colorful ribbon on my ring.

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The finished creation