Make a scrapbook travel diary – International travel tip

The worst part of getting home from an awesome vacation is figuring out what to do with all the papers, brochures, receipts, unique candy wrappers, news articles, postcards, and other things that have accumulated in your bags along the way. So next time, just bring some tape and scissors with you and paste those items in your diary or Moleskine as you travel.

It’s a great way to pass time waiting for your next bus or sitting on a train. Once home, you’ll open up your travel journal and have all sorts of colorful memories to share.

Save wine bottles (or at least the labels) – Souvenir tip

Many people have a nice bottle of wine when they dine out on vacation. When you’re on vacation, scan the wine list for locally produced wines or choose a bottle with the restaurant’s label. Instead of packing the bottles to lug home, ship them home as you leave each city.

Alternatively, if you don’t have room for the bottles, soak the labels off the bottle in your hotel room, let dry overnight and press between the pages a book. At the very least, they make for a great color insert in your Moleskine.

Related: The 25 greatest cities in the world for drinking wine

Aspinal’s Envelope-Wrap Journals

You may love your steeped-in-history Moleskine travel journal. However, Aspinal of London’s Envelope Wrap Journal may give the legendary Italian notebook a run for its money in the coolness department.

Hand-made from soft, supple calfskin, and hand-waxed to a high-gloss finish, Aspinal’s journals contain 300 pages — choose between feint lined or “plain buttery cream” — for you to encourage your budding Hemingway.

Available from pocket-sized to extra large, before setting off on your next journey choose between either antique brown (if you’re heading somewhere “Old World”) or black (if you’re jetting off to a cosmopolitan destination).

With such a nice journal, don’t overlook the perfect pen:

Make a Moleskine Travel Journal, Win a Prize

Calling all artists! Your talents could snag you a free trip to Paris* courtesy of Moleskine and Air France. The pair want to you create a work of art based on your travels for their “Invitation Au Voyage” exhibition.

All you have to do is transform any Moleskine notebook — Classic, Cahier, Reporter, or City — into a travel journal. Take a trip somewhere and document it using any artistic style you want: words, paint, collage, etc. The only thing that matters is that your work is interesting, unique, and creative.

Judges will select the 50 best journals for display in their traveling “Invitation Au Voyage” exhibition. If your work is chosen, it will make its way around Asia during August and September 2007.

The first prize is an economy class ticket to Paris, France. Second place will receive Moleskine’s entire set of city notebooks covering Europe and America. Moleskine will also give a set of three notebooks to each of the remaining 47 artists chosen for the exhibition.

The contest ends on June 30th. *Anyone can enter, but Moleskine recommends entrants reside in Asia since the 1st prize will only fly from Asia to France. Give it a shot even if you don’t live in Asia. Your work could still end up in the art exhibit!

[via Moleskinerie]

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Moleskine City Guides

When I visited Amsterdam, I bought a sketchbook, and while I was in the city, I shoved everything in there, from ticket stubs, to brochures, to notes about destinations. Although it wasn’t a moleskin — and wasn’t anywhere near as pretty as some moleskins I’ve seen — it served its purpose, and it’s fun to look at now.

Moleskine, makers of the ubiquitous travel journals, recently introduced City Guides. Sort of a make-yer-own guidebook, Moleskine’s City Guides are an excellent, stylish way of organizing a trip — before or after you go. Each 3½” x 5½” book comes with numerous maps of the city; an alphabetical street index; 228 pages (76 of which are blank); 32 removable sheets for exchanging email addresses with wild-eyed hostelers; 12 translucent sticky sheets, to overlay and re-position, so you can trace your route; an inside accordion pocket; and three ribbon place-markers.

Currently, the series includes Amsterdam, Barcelona, Berlin, Dublin, Lisbon, London, Madrid, Milan, Paris, Prague, Rome, and Wien. During 2007, the series will expand to include Boston, New York, San Fran, D.C., Chicago, LA, Montreal, and Seattle. With one of these $17 City Guides, all you need is a translator, some coffee, and a sharp pencil, and you’ll have your own, customized travel guide in no time.