Travel Journal Kit


“For every traveler who has any taste of his own, the only useful guidebook will be the one which he himself has written.” Aldous Huxley

gppstrteamlink1_3I thought I’d jump right in and respond to Michelle Ward’s wonderful GPP Street Team Crusade No. 17 – Pandora’s Box – Make a Journal Kit.

I have had the great fortune in the past few years to do a bit of traveling and I’ve been keeping a travel journal for most of my adventures. I really like a spiral bound journal because you can fold one side under for when you are in small places wanting to write or draw or paste down ephemera, when there is little or no room. Like in a ridiculously small airplane seat or a lovely small café table. It’s interesting how sometimes small and cramped is criminal and sometimes it’s charming. Anyway, it fits nicely into my travel bag along with my little kit of supplies which I have pared down to include:

Little pointy travel scissors
A Scotch brand paper cutter for when the airport takes away my scissors – very random
A couple of water pens to use with watercolor papers
A regular writing pen
A couple of colored Gelly Roll pens
My trusty Faber-Castell Pitt Artist Pen in the “S” size – super fine – filled with black waterproof India Ink which I can watercolor over without smearing – that’s why it’s my trusty travel pen of choice
A mechanical pencil with an eraser
A Uni-Ball Signo white pen
A small cocktail napkin, usually from the plane, for drying my water pen
Nicholson’s Peerless Water Color papers
Making Memories Alphabet rub-ons
Small glassine envelopes for treasures

All these supplies fit into a “Kokuyo Kaddy Supply Tote”, which is a mere 7 ¾” X 4 ¾”. Voila! Travel journal kit.

Travel journaling has allowed me to actually remember what I did on my journey and more than that (although sometimes that’s plenty), it has deepened my experience while I’m there. There is there, there, and journaling helps me appreciate it, as well as remember it. I think about my children and grandchildren someday reading about these adventures and realize I’m creating a family narrative as well as just journaling my journey.

I realize after perusing other crusading journaler’s on-the-go kits, that I need to create a version for my bigger, ongoing journal. I usually work on that in my studio where I have everything at hand. But I think I’d like to get braver and head out into the world for a different kind of everyday journaling. There’s lots of there, there….too. I’ll keep you posted.

A big thanks to Michelle for this inspired crusade, I have really enjoyed checking in with other people and seeing their journaling kits.

16 Responses to Travel Journal Kit

  1. Renee says:

    Frannie – Lovely to see & hear from you again. Thanks for the tip on Five Green Boxes, I’ll have to drop by. I’ve crafted by own “travel in the house” bag of stuff for playing with art. My work schedule doesn’t allow for much time – but I play in my art book every night – sometimes it’s pretty boring – but it’s play. Cheers to a Taos day and night! Skye

  2. Lisa Hoffman says:

    Oh Lord. After seeing all of your Beautiful Books in person, I can only tell the World at Large that we all need to hope for a big, Fran Meneley Travel Journal Show somewhere.
    One must be strong of heart and self image to gaze upon these Beauties and not toss her own into the recycle bin.
    Great photo too, Miz M….keep ’em comin….

    Lisa H.

  3. Kathy Lopez says:

    Hi Frannie,

    Great idea with this traceling kit. Quick question, what do you mean by a watercolor pen? You mean the kind you fill with water? And where do you get the watercolor india ink? I would love to get my hands on that for my class. LOL and LOVE the site, Keep it up girlfriend. Have a blessed day, Kathy

  4. Seth says:

    Great kit — it may be small but it seems complete. And all those journals look so amazing together!

  5. Chris says:

    How pretty is that journal page! Thanks for this. You sure are right about how journaling during a trip gives you a greater depth of experience.

  6. dang! my comment must have evaporated, or i didn’t hang around long enough to confirm because i always forget to do that. congrats on getting the blog up and running! thanks for jumping in right away with the crusade. fun to see your journal kit, and to know it actually made it on the road. in my first comment i mentioned the family narrative – such an important part of journaling from the road because it’s the little things we forget, the things that aren’t captured on film, that we need to write down. thanks for sharing with the team fran!

  7. Julie says:

    Fran, this is a fabulous little kit and I so love your journal pages! Brilliant!

  8. JeriAnn says:

    I love your banner and your perfectly thought out mini-kit. After this Crusade, I’m definitely going to update mine. BTW — the “launch” page of your son is terrific! Will there be entries from your travels? Can’t wait! — JeriAnn

  9. stephanie says:

    Your journals look fantastic…I’d love to see them in person, the Australia cover captures the aborginal art perfectly!

    Love your list of ingredients too…..and ALL that fits in your tiny bag??…perfect!!!


  10. Julie Molina says:

    I love your blog. You have great pictures. And great journals! And I even love the quote you’ve written under your picture. You’re very talented.

  11. I love looking at your journal pages. I like art only journals, but find written artfully journals much more interesting and inviting.
    Welcome to the blog world!

  12. forcryeye says:

    Love your journal pages! Can we have a close up?

  13. carin.c says:

    Oh my, your journals look absolutely intriguing!! You seem to have the kit down to a science. Hope I can get in the groove myself and start journalling while I am travelling too!

  14. wow, that’s quiet a lot to take during a trip….

  15. wow, that’s quiet a lot to take during a trip….

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