This might be an unnecessary post, but when I first considered adding washi tape to the first page of each book in my journaling Bible, I was unable to find much in the way of tips or suggestions. So, after completing the simple, yet time-consuming task myself, I thought I would share a few things I learned (or suggestions I took from others) in case there was anyone that was looking for anything similar.
I have two journaling Bibles that I use for Bible study and creative worship. The first one I’ve had for a year and added tabs to for each book. I bought this digital file for planner tabs from an etsy shop called Amy J. Delightful which I highly recommend (she seriously has DELIGHTFUL, adorable files for so many uses). I printed out several pages of the tabs and individually cut out 66 of them for each book, then I hand wrote each book on the front and back of each tab, and glued them all into my Bible. It took SO MUCH time, but was so worth it for me. I know that there are also a lot of etsy shops that have tabs with Bible names on them pre cut and ready to be put in your Bible with adhesive already on them. That’s a much simpler (little more expensive) option.
I got my second journaling Bible (from my sweet, wonderful husband) this past Christmas. I didn’t really want to add tabs this time around, so I thought I would hold off and see if I felt like I needed any sort of book divisions. I also had a hard time diving into creating in this Bible, because it was brand new and I once again felt a sort of paralysis/apprehension about marking on the new, pristine pages. Which felt very silly since I had been working in my first Bible for almost a year. Still, after a little time, and marking on a few of the pages in a Bible journaling workshop I taught at our church, I chose a SheReadsTruth study to begin with and just DID IT. Yes, I’ve made mistakes in it, not every page is “share-worthy” or elaborate, but it’s not about any of that anyway. I have met God in those pages and that is the most important thing.
After working in the Bible for a little while, I realized that having book divisions was actually quite helpful. I had seen several people add washi tape for this purpose in a bible journaling group on FB. I started the process the usual way I do most things—by winging it and not taking much time for each part of the process. It didn’t take too long for me to realize that this was also going to be a time-consuming project that also required a bit of precision and even then, the results would be imperfect. So I took a little break, and consequently left my bag of washi tape at a friend’s house for two weeks. Not being able to use the washi tape renewed my desire to add it to my Bible pages.
The next time around I took my time a little more with placing the tape on the page so that it would have an approximately even amount on each side of the page. I chose my pattern (mostly rainbow order) and bought a few additional rolls of tape to fill in the colors I didn’t already have. (Thank you, Michael’s.)
Here are some tips and tricks I learned:
1. Use wax paper so that the tape doesn’t get stuck to other pages. This was SO INCREDIBLY helpful.
2. Accept that it won’t be perfect. I learned this pretty quickly. It’s hard to get the tape just right, and so I allowed for a margin of error.
3. Washi tape is permanent AND temporary. The beauty of washi tape is that it is strong enough to stick to paper and stay indefinitely AND it can also be pulled off without ripping the thin Bible page. There were several times that the tape was very uneven and was either partially on or completely folded over on both sides of the page, and I was able to peel it back and fix it. I am also very confident that the tape I have on my Bible is not going anywhere.
4. Tape that is partially translucent and patterned is ideal. The washi that was partially translucent was helpful because I could see where it was half on the page when laying it down, and the pattern helped to see where the middle of the tape was and have one half the pattern on each side. It also helped to work with good light.
5. After laying the tape on the front of the page, start folding from the middle on the back of the page.
6. Add in the washi tape before illustrating any (or too many) pages. I had already colored/wrote on a few pages in this Bible which turned out to be a surprising number of the pages that needed washi. It didn’t bother me too much since the tape only covers a very small part of what I had already put on the page. Ideally, I would have been working with all blank pages.
7. Use a corner rounder punch to cut all off the excess washi on your pages. I was generously given one by a friend, and YET for the life of me, I have not been able to find it. haha. I just used scissors to trim and round all of the edges, but the punch would have saves me a lot of time.
I think, adding tabs or washi tape at the start of each book would be a great first step in diving into a journaling Bible. It adds color, gives you a place to go with color scheme, and gets the “making mistakes” thing out of the way.
Let me know if you have any questions or any suggestions that I didn’t mention! I would love to see your Bibles if anyone else has done this or tabs or even something different!
I know the pictures aren’t super pinterest worthy, but hopefully they fulfilled their purpose.