10+Journal Examples & Templates
At some point, some of us have kept a journal or a notebook of some sort. Whether it was intended to keep a list of the movies we want to watch that week, or for doodles, or for keeping track of our diet, or our month’s schedules and appointments, or even the occasional rants we just can’t tell anybody else, we just want a reliable, not to mention pretty, piece of stationery for any of our moods.
Whether you’re a journal virgin or a journal expert, there are some things about keeping this personal sidekick that you absolutely need to know.
Elements of a Good Notebook
One of the most important parts of keeping a journal is to choose one, and not just those cheap, low-quality, store-bought kind. No, we are talking about a journal that can meet all of your writing needs, while also being pretty enough to make you excited to write on it. Aside from that, there are other things you should definitely consider when buying your journal:
1. Cover Design: There are a lot of adorable notebook cover designs out there, and it’s best that you choose one you really like. Your journal, if you really commit to it, is going to be one of the most personal things you will ever own, and if its contents speak a lot about you, it should look the part too. Your future journal book cover design should mirror what you like.
2. Paper Material: Nobody likes writing on flimsy paper. It just ruins the whole experience. Plus, a notebook made out of super thin paper is also really annoying. A good thing about taking the time to choose your journal is that you will have the chance to look at all its elements and decide if its good enough for you. The material it is made of is of paramount importance. Forget about pretty. We want a notebook that can possibly outlast us.
3. The Pages: There are notebooks with ruled or lined paper, while there are also those who use blank paper. There are also notebooks that are designed with bullets, calendars, mini planners, or to-do lists. When choosing a notebook, picture what you want to use it for so that you can choose a notebook that can help you achieve that purpose.
10+ Journal Templates
My Daily Journal
Travel Journal Template
My Dance Journal
Student Journal Template
Coffee and Passion-Themed Journal
Recipe Journal Template
Daily Music Lesson Journal
Retro Daily Journal Template
Sports Journal Template
My Photo Journal Template
Simple Tips for an Excellent Notebook Layout
Now that you have the perfect notebook in your hands, it’s time to decide exactly what to do with it. Most journal keepers often have difficulty in deciding what to write in their journals. Well, aside from writing the inevitable day-to-day drama and the 3 am existential crisis-generated thoughts, let us explore all the other great content ideas for your journal.
1. Daily Page with Decorative Headers
This one is perfect for all you busy bees who want to organize your day’s activities on paper. If you have a knack for drawing, doodling cute headers on each daily entry will give your journal a bit of flair, while also making sure that you catalog your daily schedule.
2. Your Week at a Glance
You can also create a weekly spread with a few colorful accents to make your to-do list a little more fun. You can use bullets, checklists, and calendars in various colors, using different illustrations to make your weekly schedule look less dreary.
3. Create a Table of Healthy Habits
If you are trying to live a healthier lifestyle, you can also use your journal to keep track of your progress. A dot grid notebook will help you with this task. Instead of listing down all the things that you should not be doing for a healthier life, list down all the habits you should be practicing instead.
4. Spending Tracker
Admit it, this is something we all need. Although spending tracker apps are notorious nowadays, there is something innocent about writing it down on a journal. You can have an easier time keeping track of your expenses and keeping them within your budget. Also, if you are saving for something important, like the mortgage to your house or a family vacation, you can also track your savings with your journal.
5. Movies to Watch and Books to Read
This one is pretty popular among journal keepers who are movie and book nerds at the same time. You can illustrate bookshelves and movie theaters for a more creative and fun way of keeping track of the films and novels you just can’t miss. Don’t let another movie night be wasted by taking too much time to decide which movie to watch, and don’t let your reading pile sit there like an unwanted guest. Go through them all with your journal.
Steps to Designing a Good Notebook
If you are one of those (amazing) people who just need to put a creative stamp on everything they own, then perhaps you’ve already felt the need to beautify even your notebooks. Fortunately, notebooks are so easy to customize. In fact, here are a few awesome ideas on how you can turn a basic hardbound into something colorful.
1. DIY Fabric Covered Notebook
If you’re tired of the same boring store-bought notebook cover that you own, spice things up a little by dressing that old bastard up with any fabric of your choice. You can go with bold and unique patterns, or you can keep it simple, as long as it reflects your personality. Not only will your notebook look way prettier, but its outer cover will also be protected by the fabric.
2. Washi Notebooks and Pencils
Washi tape and paper crafting just seem to go together like peas and pies, or however the saying goes. Attach strips of colored tapes in rows onto the notebook cover and you will have a journal that is both pretty and one of a kind. You can also wrap matching washi tape around pencils to coordinate with your notebook. This easy-to-make design will surely help you create a strong statement examples.
3. Wood Notebooks
If you want a more natural, simpler look, this one is for you. Cover a cheap notebook with some pretty wood toned self-adhesive vinyl. It will make your notebook look covered by real wood, and what is more unique than that?
4. Painted Notebooks
If you want to take designing your notebook to the next level, and if you have some killer artistic skills up your sleeve, why not cover your notebooks with one of your painted designs? Experienced painters can use acrylic paints or watercolors to produce notebook covers that are real pieces of art. The best part? No one will have another notebook like yours since you designed this one yourself. You may also see fitness journal examples.
5. Zentangle Inspired Notebook
Zentangle, which is really just a fancy term for doodle art, is easy enough for beginners to accomplish. It is the art of drawing repetitive designs with a black thin lined Micron marker. It does take a bit of practice until you master the steps, but even the so-called artistically challenged can still produce lovely drawings by following the simple guidelines observed by the art.
Types of Paper Notebooks
Different types of people from different positions are always in need of notebooks. Despite touchscreen keypads and laptops, writers, students, businessmen, basically anyone who uses their mind on a daily basis, still has a need for the cheapest word processor that has ever been invented: the paper notebook. With that being said, here are the most common types of paper notebook.
1. Spiral Notebook
The spiral notebook is the most common paper notebook, with students as the biggest users, and for good reason. They’re cheap, they come in many sizes, and their 70 to 200 pages are enough for an entire semester of endless note-taking. They are typically wire bound and three-hole punched, with pages that are usually perforated for easy removal. Spiral notebooks come with lined-paper, either wide or college-ruled.
This one is sturdier than your spiral notebook with a thicker cardboard cover. Composition notebooks are book-bound, meaning, the pages are sewn together and then bound like a book. They usually contain 100 college-ruled pages, with unperforated pages which are not designed to be removed. You may also see goal journal examples.
3. Lab or Scientific
Lab or scientific notebooks are designed to keep a permanent record of scientific progress. Working scientists often use them to document patent claims. They are usually filled with graph paper that contains headings for recording research and experiment details. Soft-cover student notebooks are relatively inexpensive, but hard-bound notebooks used by scientists cost as much as $20.
Notebooks used for business often serve two functions: note taking and schedule keeping. Many notebooks in this category contain a built-in planner. They are usually bound in a heavier weight material, such as vinyl or leather, and contain legal-ruled paper.
High-end notebooks feel luxurious inside and out. They contain heavy-weight papers, which are much more substantial than the flimsy kind we find in our common spiral notebook. They are usually hard-bound and covered in cloth or moleskin, a heavy cotton fabric with a velvety feel. Some are held tight with elastic closures. They range in size from pocket-sized to over-sized. High-end notebooks may be filled with standard line paper, but they more often contain blank, dot grid, or French-ruled paper. You may also see daily journal examples.
Notebook and Journal Sizes
Small, medium and large are not acceptable notebook sizes. Well, technically, they are, but you have to be extremely specific because notebooks can come in literally any shape and size. Creators are free to do whatever they want with their notebook’s size, so if you are buying one online, it can be a little tricky if you are not aware of the exact dimensions you are looking for.
Notebook Size Chart – A Series
- A3: 297 × 420 mm (11.7 × 16.5 in)
- A4: 210 × 297 mm (8.3 × 11.7 in)
- A5: 148 × 210 mm (5.8 × 8.3 in)
- A6: 105 × 148 mm (4.1 × 5.8 in)
- A7: 74 × 105 mm (2.9 × 4.1 in)
Notebook Size Chart – B Series
- B5: 175 × 250 mm (6.9 × 9.8 in)
- B6: 125 × 176 mm (4.9 × 6.9 in)
- B7: 88 × 125 mm (3.5 × 4.9 in)
Moleskin Notebook Sizes
- Pocket: 9 × 14 cm (3.54 × 5.52 in)
- Large: 13 × 21 cm (5.11 × 8.27 in)
- Extra Large: 19 × 25 cm (7.5 × 9.84 in)
Moleskin Professional Notebook Sizes
- Large: 13 × 21 cm (5.11 × 8.27 in)
- A4: 210 × 297 mm (8.3 × 11.7 in)
Delfonics Rollbahn Notebook Sizes
- Pocket: 10 × 15 cm (3.93 × 5.9 in)
- Large: 14 × 18 cm (5.51 × 7.08 in)
- Extra Large: 21 × 26 cm (8.27 × 910.23 in)
Rhodia Notebook Sizes
- Pad 11: 7.4 × 10.5 cm (2.91 × 4.13 in)
- Pad 12: 8.5 × 12 cm (3.35 × 4.72 in)
- Pad 13: 10.5 × 14.8 cm (4.12 × 5.82 in)
- Pad 16: 14.8 × 21 cm (5.82 × 8.27 in)
- Pad 18: 21 × 29.7 cm (8.27 × 11.69 in)
- Pad 19: 21 × 31.8 cm (8.27 × 12.52 in)
- Pad 38: 42 × 31.8 cm (16.53 × 12.51 in)
Notebook and Journal FAQs
What is a journal notebook?
A journal is a written record of incidents, experiences, and ideas. It is also known as a personal journal, notebook, diary, and log. Writers often keep journals to record observations and explore ideas that may eventually be developed into more formal essays, articles, and stories.
What is bullet journaling?
The Bullet Journal is a customizable and forgiving organization system. It can be your to-do list, sketchbook, notebook, and diary, but most likely, it will be all of the above. It will teach you to do more with less. You may also see bullet journal examples.
Journals and notebooks are a handy thing to own. Even in this digitized age where people can just type, writing thoughts, feelings, goals, plans, or even wishes down still has this natural magical feel to it. So if you want to be a part of the old soul club, make your own journal and fill it to the brim with every tiny thing about your life.