DIY Journal Covers

 In Davenparty

G’day Creative friends!


Who’s been feeling too intimidated to paint the cover of their gorgeous new JDMM art journals? (*raises hand…)


Well, I was thinking of a way to take the stress out of it until I work up the nerve and it clicked! Just like in days of old, when I would decorate my school books and folders, why not decorate a template and slot it into the dust cover (journal jacket)?!!!


It’s almost too simple I can’t believe it wasn’t my first Davenparty project! haha


Anyway, I wanted to share in the fun so Steve played along (albeit he cheated and raided my craft stash for Tim Holtz supplies because he wasn’t feeling my fairy fantasy today!)


You can find the dimensions for the template here: Template Sizes


It’s a great alternative if you want to use your favorite supplies and can’t figure out a way to translate it to canvas, or if you ran out of gesso, if you want to make seasonal covers or a cover for a friend (like Steve made for me)… It’s also great for those of you who have the pre-decorated journals, and want to try your hand at decorating the cover without painting over Jane’s gorgeous designs 🙂

For a quick cover grab Jane’s FACE STENCIL, draw your outline, flip it, draw another face, then go mad with mermaid markers and water!


If you’re looking for a less messy alternative, grab your favourite papers and ephemera to collage a cover. You could throw some photos on there and kind of scrapbook it together!


If you decide to switch out your covers (or say you made a Halloween one and want to swap out for Christmas), simply take out your cover, trim up the edges a little and washi tape it inside the journal! INSTANT JOURNAL SPREAD! haha 😉



We had a lot of fun pretending we were back at school decorating our school books and I can see myself making a few more… ok, a hundred more…

Enjoy the video guys and make sure you show us your clever works on social media, I love seeing you all try the projects!


the Face Stencil comes in this paint set:

jdmm-acrylic-sets-12 jdmm-acrylic-sets-4


– James

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Showing 9 comments
  • Chantelle

    Wow what a cool idea James. Have to do this for my plain journal for sure. Journal jacket arriving on Monday, so I guess I have an excuse to do some art this weekend 🙂 Love your creativeness!!!

  • PennyH

    Yep, haven’t done the covers. I keep putting them off. I have filled up one large and one small journal since the end of January….big, blank, glaring, white covers. Thanks for the ideas and the fun guys!

  • Kerri

    What a brilliant idea! I’m going to start one tomorrow in time for my journal arriving in the post. Thanks so much for sharing James and Steve I hope your better soon xxxx

  • Jenny

    Love the covers, they both looked amazing! Such inspiration!

  • Candace M

    James you never cease to amaze! Your work is beautiful. I love when Steve joins you to create! You both are awesome I look so forward to your videos!

  • Cathy

    Steve … you did a fantastic job of not using any of Jane’s Products! Just kidding. Your cover looks great and I hope you are feeling better soon. James as usual I love to watch you create. I must have paused and re-ran each step you did so I could copy…. a trillion times! This is how I learn and you are a fantastic teacher. Thanks again for sharing guys!

  • Sandra

    Awesome idea… I remember decorating brown paper bags for my school books. What fun.

  • Marysu

    James, you know how absolutely mad about you I am (and about Steve, and Bianca, and even that new kid with the changing name)!! This is just genius!! I foresee more than one cover for me and my gals!! I am soooo glad Jane and American Crafts found you and shared you with all the Davenpeeps because you make my day very often!! Off to paint and craft and create!! Much love!! ❤️

  • Sonia Quodrill

    I love all your videos, so much to learn and very entertaining ! Always looking forward to the next one

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