If your child is a little Picasso churning out great works of art it can be tricky to know what to do with all the masterpieces. Throwing them out can make you feel guilty, but drowning in too much clutter isn’t ideal either.
Here are some great ideas of what to do with your children’s artwork plus our top tips for displaying and celebrating the best pieces.
What to do with children’s artwork
Curate an art book
Once in a while sit down with your child and pick out the pieces of art that you both love best. Then curate these into an album, art portfolio or photo book that you can flick through whenever you like.
It makes a great coffee table book, a sweet gift for a grandparent and a neat way to store your child’s work for years to come.
Use it as wrapping paper
Save money buying wrapping paper and repurpose your kid’s artwork into gift wrap. Not only will it add a personal touch to the gift, it’s also a great way to teach your child about reusing things in creative ways and minimising waste.
Transform it into something else
In addition to wrapping paper, there’s a huge range of other things that you can transform children’s artwork into. Here are just a few:
- Cut out the art and use it to decorate cardboard boxes. Use these for storage in the playroom or for presenting gifts.
- Create a garland out of paintings your child has done. Use it for birthdays and other celebrations.
- Turn multiple artworks into a new project by creating a collage.
- Make placemats, coasters or keyrings from the artwork.
Make a digital copy
If you don’t have the physical or mental space for clutter, make a digital copy either by scanning your child’s artwork or taking a photo before throwing it out.
Keep a dedicated folder on your hard drive for your child’s drawings and other art projects. Make a sub-folder for each year so that you can keep track of when each piece was created.
Store in a dedicated box
One of the challenges with kids is figuring out how to stop clutter from invading the whole home. Create a dedicated box – it can be big if you want – for all the children’s artwork.
If you want to display the latest creations temporarily before storing them in a box, consider a dedicated pin up cork board to stop the clutter from spreading. It’s a great addition for the playroom wall or your child’s room.
Frame the best ones
Every now and then your child might produce some special pieces that you want to show off for a long time. Framing them is a great way to ensure they are celebrated.
The right frame will also protect the precious pieces from things like dust and insects.
If you don’t want to keep one piece up forever, you can always rotate which piece you display. Having it in a frame will make it look classier and suitable for the living room or hallway.
Framing your child’s artwork is also a great idea for gifts for family members. Grandparents especially will love receiving artwork that they can display proudly in their home or work office.
Create a gallery wall
Got so much art that you want to display it all? Create your own gallery wall at home by framing several pieces and arranging them in an attractive display. You can mix in some professional artworks and family portraits too if you like.
A great tip for getting gallery walls right is to cut out cardboard rectangles the size of each frame you have.
Practice rearranging the rectangles of cardboard until you have a layout you’re happy with. That way when you put hooks in the wall, you’ll be confident that it’s going to look great.
Our top tips for framing your kid’s artwork
Go with your gut
When it comes to choosing which pieces to display, notice how you react when you look at the art. The pieces that make your heart swell – they’re the ones you want to hang on your wall because you have an emotional connection to them.
You might also fall in love with a piece because of its colour scheme or the shapes used. Visual aspects that tie in with the rest of your home decor is also a good reason to choose a particular piece.
Get your kids involved
Let your children be involved in the framing process. They’ll love to help you choose a frame style and mat colour. Not only will they feel proud of their framed art, they’ll also learn about what goes into making a frame.
Get several done at once
Framing several pieces of art at once in the same style frame and colour scheme means you’ll have more flexibility when displaying them at home. You know they’ll complement each other and look great all in a row.
Don’t be afraid of size
If you love a large piece of art your child has done, don’t be afraid to frame it and use it as a statement piece. When you choose the right frame, you can achieve a really eye-catching result.
Keep on top of it and stay organised
It’s easy for the artworks to pile up quickly, so make sure you’ve got a system in place to help you stay organised.
For example, it might help to have two boxes – one where you dump everything that needs to be sorted out later and another one of pieces you immediately fall in love with and want to frame.
Sit down every month or two and go through the recent creations. Give yourself a limit of how many you can keep and take photos to help make the goodbye easier. By spending 10 minutes here and there you’ll save yourself a big job later on.