Make Your Own: City Guide Notebook

intro Recently, I visited the Dansk Arkitektur Centre here in København to check out the current Zaha Hadid exhibit. The display was really exciting, but another cool part of the museum is that it has a bookstore that is a great resource for designers and architects. While looking through the notebook section, I came across a series called the Moleskine City Guides. These are basically little journals dedicated to individual cities that include maps, blank pages, and specific sections for you to record your favorite restaurants, bars, sites, etc. while you travel! I thought this was such a fun idea and almost considered buying one--but am so glad I held off! Making my own was completely free and also more satisfying than purchasing one. Let's make it!


I started with this compact notebook, mine is a personal favorite style by Quattro, I had brought with me to study abroad. The great thing about this project is that you can make it completely your own, but here is what I did if you need some help getting started. For now, I have left the front of mine blank, but I am on the hunt for a cool sticker of the city to disguise the front!


Of course a city guide needs a title page! I like things nice and simple. It would also be a good idea to add some contact info. I know I will because my notebook is becoming a great little resource.


One of the first maps in my notebook depicts the metro lines that run from my apartment to school. I'm a nerd and like to do things by hand, so I drew mine in with pen and Prismacolor markers. As I add to the book, I plan to cut + paste pieces of maps from different areas of the city. You could even cut down and entire map into individual pieces to fit on each page of your notebook, or fold up the entire thing and stick it inside. This project has a lot of freedom!


After leaving a decent amount of blank pages for mapping, I then started adding in some categories where I can keep track of my favorite places. So far, I have started a page for restaurants, for architecture sites, and also bars/clubs in the area. This is great especially for the dining spots in case I can't remember exactly where one was.


Here is a closer look at my food page, which I definitely need to update! I am planning to write down as many places as possible even if they aren't somewhere I'm obsessed about, because then this notebook starts to become like a little diary of everywhere I have been.

Hopefully you are a traveler (or an aspiring one) and enjoyed this little project! I think it would be so fun to make a notebook like this for every city you spend a decent amount of time in, or you could even create a single one for all of your travels! Is this something you would try? Let me know!

Thanks so much for stopping by, x. Paige

You might also like these past posts:

IMG_5061 Screen Shot 2013-09-09 at 11.29.44 PM intro

Travel Journal DIY

IMG_5061 Before blogging, there was journaling. Whenever I go on a big trip, mainly to Europe, I collect little bits and pieces of my travels and compile them into a big fat book. I've never been one to sit down and write much, so I choose to go a more visual route by keeping ticket stubs, brochures, and postcards, and then adding little comments of memories here and there. With thoughts of going abroad on my mind, I thought about these journals I had tucked away, and decided to share them with you. Here are my favorite pages, and some tips and tricks!


This journal is from when I traveled to Germany + Paris with my mom for 2 weeks when I was 13. My love of all things colorful is reflected on these pages. When it comes to travel journaling, I say that anything goes. I tape in candy wrappers and even receipts, because it's fun to look at the different shops and currencies.


If my pages are looking a little sparse, I even throw in a few related magazine cutouts, like the backpacking bag covered in travel stamps.


The other journal I have is when I took a 26-day Europe trip through an educational program, which 3 of my friends happened to go on as well! We visited Greece, Italy, Austria, and Germany. On a trip like this, journaling is awesome because you're bound to forget certain things, and this fills in some of those gaps.


With this journal, I packed more drawing supplies and stickers that related to the countries. This helped because I was a bit busier on this trip. I used colored markers to write down silly memories, and the stickers helped make the pages have more depth and interest.


There are no limits to journaling! Stick whatever you want inside. One of my favorite parts is this fold out book of mini postcards, which pops up when you flip through the pages.


You may think it's hard to collect so many things on your travels, but I will just take any brochures, etc. offered to me, and just stick them in my bag. At the end of the day, its relaxing to sit down and journal to reflect on your day.

I hope you enjoyed this peek into my memories and my tips on travel journaling! I am so happy I have these little collections to look back and remember my fun vacations with friends + family. I am sure I will be avidly journaling (and blogging) while in Copenhagen, especially because I will be seeing it through an architectural background now that I am in college. Thanks so much for reading, and stay tuned for my future travels! x. Paige