How to use & enjoy handbound books

Yes, you can fill a beautiful book! Make your mark. Preserve what matters most.


The fear of the blank page. That's something I hear often as book lovers contemplate handmade journals. But there's good reason to make that first mark. Begin to write and draw and collage in a meaningful book and you'll be rewarded with a lasting keepsake that has a staying power that digital just doesn't have.

I'm passionate about using handmade books just as much as binding them. And I want to inspire you to do the same. Take a look at what follows below — some of my favorite examples of books put to use.

And I want to see how you use handmade books, in everyday life and for those momentous life occasions. There are two ways to share: 1) email with pictures of your book and a little story of how you put it to use, or 2) post a photo of your book in action on Twitter or Instagram with the hashtag #myusedbook and the tag @linenlaidfelt so I'll spot it.


Photo Albums

  • Wedding, engagement, or honeymoon
  • Vacation photos and postcards
  • Instagram photos
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  • Notes and doodles from museum visits
  • Paper ephemera
  • Visual lists and pattern collecting

Garden Journals

  • Diagram seed and bulb plantings
  • Track flower bloom times
  • Save informational garden center tags

Baby Books

  • Month-by-month life notes
  • Save hospital bracelets and ultrasounds
  • Handprints and footprints

Wedding Guest Books

  • Meaningful guest messages & memories
  • Favorite photos of the bride and groom
  • Wedding showers & engagement parties

Travel Journals

  • Save trip itineraries and musings
  • Ticket stubs and transit passes
  • Make your own scavenger hunt