Wednesday, May 1, 2013

What is a Smash Book?

Art deco inspired watercolor in Smash Book

 A Smash Book is the brand name
for a spiral bound scrapbook with
patterned card stock pages by 
K & C Company.  It's an outgrowth of
the scrapbooking phenomenon, but targeted
to people who don't have time to do a 
complicated lay-out.  The pages already
have background patterns, and you can 
glue in photos, ticket stubs, mail, or any
ephemera from your day.
I choose to use mine as an art journal,
to make collages or sketches, or whatever
I feel like making that day.

I have seen a number of artists creating
their own hand-made 'smash books' with
assorted papers.  I have several that I've made,
and am enjoying them very much. Sometimes
I 'respond' to the background of the page,
and sometimes I cover it up completely!
Basically, we artists make book art from
whatever we want to...

Above, a page in a journal that I hand-made
when I signed up for Mary Ann Moss'
Full Tilt Boogie class. (I highly recommend it)

Above, a page from the Scrappy Journal
that Elizabeth made for me. Her construction
is machine sewn onto the fabric cover. She
used a wonderful array of paper and
packaging scraps with just enough blank
space to add art work. It is one of my 
favorite art journals!

When I refer to my Smash Book, I am 
actually referring to the brand name book I
ordered on Amazon, (I am seeing them
 in some of our discount stores now too) 
which I use as a visual art journal. 
 I have noticed however, that
the term is becoming rather like "Coke."  
Often people will refer to Coke when they are
talking about any cola beverage, not just that
brand name.  And often the term 'Art Journal' refers
to any number of type of books: a travel journal, 
a smash book, a sketchbook, a garden
 or nature get the idea.
The definition of some things are rather 
fluid, especially for artists!

Spread in the Scrappy Journal
 What do you call your journal?


  1. My daughter bought herself a Smash book with a 50%off coupon at Micheal's. She loves it. I tried to talk her into having me make one with my Bind-it-all but she wanted the genuine article. Whatever...her $$. :)

  2. I haven't explored all the pages yet but I had to come here and mentioned that I call my journal madge.



  3. I have a couple of different journals. I have one that is completely bulging at the seams with the practice pages and experiments I've done. I also have the travel journal I made when I took Mary Ann Moss's Trip To Venice class. An awsome class. How's the full tilt boogie class going? I'm taking my time with the TTV class in terms of filling up the journal, but I've gotten a lot done, and the stitching technique is so cool. I love your pages, especially the one with the stamp and the one with the ice cafe embellishment! And the green on the last spread! Oh, let's just say I liked them all.

    I've seen the Smash journals at MIchael's and I love K & Company goods. But I guess I figured I'd make my own smash journal. How arrogant of me!


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