Remember cooing innocently over that first painting your child brought home from school, despite not knowing whether it was meant to be a flowerpot or an elephant?
I bet you didn’t realise that this would open up the floodgates to many many more paintings that would leave your home awash with your child’s artistic endeavours.
Sadly, not all child’s art is created equal. For every emerging Van Gogh with the corresponding amount of talent, there are the less-than-enthusiastic who clearly have only put paint to paper under duress (which unfortunately still might not stop them from pitching a fit when you try to throw it out).
Luckily there are many ways to enhance your child’s artwork, regardless of how good, bad or ugly.
If Mister Maker, Beyonce and I got together and crafted a wise quote, it would sound something this:
“Even if you don’t like it, you should really put a frame on it.”
Why? Because just like a good haircut or decent pair of glasses, frames can make everything better.
Try multi-panel framing for a touch of class.
Source: The Imagination Tree
For a wall you want them to draw on, how about these funky wallpaper designs from Graham & Brown? Stick your favourite kids’ drawings, postcards and photos in the ‘frames’ for a fun family gallery.
Source: Graham & Brown
Making a book of your child’s art is a great way to showcase their work while reducing clutter. This baby will sit proudly on your coffee table alongside The Complete Works of W.H Auden and Europe’s Greatest Cathedrals.
Source: Paislee Press
No, I don’t mean with your foot as you try to squash it into the bin.
The US postal service provides a way for you to share the joy that is your child’s artwork and send mail at the same time. Genius!
Just like framing, mosaicing (is that a word?) also makes everything better. Add a frame to the resulting mosaic and POW!
Source: Get Buttoned Up
Due to a sudden flashback of an almost-public faux pas, I just had to double check that “snowflake” doesn’t have a sexual or drug-related meaning in Urban Dictionary.
Now back to high art!
In case you don’t remember from your primary school days, making snowflakes is super easy. Simply cut your child’s painting into a circular shape, fold it into quarters or eighths and hack away. It might sound random but you’ll see the magic once you open the ‘snowflake’.
For tutorials on more elaborate snowflakes, see here.
Since I’ve received many many art works consisting of white paper with a mild tarnish of crayon on the farthest reaches of the page, I could legimately pull off the following all-white design.
Source: Lasso the Moon
Make them into buntings!
In case you’ve noticed a mild change in title-wording scheme, this is because my second foray into Urban Dictionary did not end as well as the first one.
Buntings *blush* are a simple yet effective way to decorate a child’s bedroom or birthday party.
Source: Design Improvised
OK, so ‘lantern’ also has a dirty alternative meaning according to Urban Dictionary. But I’ve decided I’m not going to let those fools stop me from using words in the manner of my choosing *defiant fist shaking*
Image and instructions: The Imagination Tree
Modern art it!
This is pretty darn cool. Get creative yourself and transform your kid’s scribbles into modern art. Using a photocopier, enlarge your favourite portion of the pic, invert the colours and pop it into a nice frame.
Source: Beautiful Mess
This is also a really awesome idea, though it might require you to have some artistic talent (or know someone who does). I really ought to be friends with Ruth Oosterman. Check out how she’s transformed her child’s scribbles into these uniquely beautiful masterpieces.
Source: The Mischievous Mommy
NICE WAYS TO GET RID OF ARTWORK
Sometimes your best framing, lanterning and snowflaking efforts still aren’t enough to stem the overflow of incoming artworks. So what can you do with the excess?
You can certainly try to squirrel them into the bin, but kids have a radar for this kind of activity so good luck with that!
Here are some ingenious solutions that will respect your child’s artwork without flooding your home.
Turn it into gift wrapping and gift tags.
This is a meaningful way to honour the artistry while at the same time getting it out of your house. It helps to know your audience though. While your relatives might find the paint splodges of alleged dinosaurs cute, your childless male boss may not.
Tell your children that anything that they don’t keep and display in their own rooms will go in the bin.
Watch them suddenly become more discerning/produce better works.
Agree to display all their artwork on the condition that they also display YOUR artwork.
Yes, if they want you to include their scribble of a cat on the fridge, they must agree to cover their own bedroom walls with the draft pages of your high school essay.
Pretty! Source: Flickr/Corey Holms
Or the following.
Is it a cat? Is it a vacuum cleaner? No, it’s an elephant! Source: Crew Captain
Take a picture of a picture.
Take photos of their art so you can keep a record forever (or at least for as long your device lasts) without the clutter. If the kids have their own devices, encourage them to store it on those instead so it uses up their memory and not yours.
Tip: To restore some good mummy points, agree to display a rotating selection of photographed art in a digital photo frame.
Turn it into a chain letter.
Write on the back of a piece of art saying that whoever displays this on their fridge will have extra good luck for the year. Then send it around. Admittedly, this one is kinda mean but it will help relieve you of some excess art (and probably a fair few friends).
Turn it into a tattoo.
For you that is, assuming your child is under age. This magnificent display of love will almost certainly buy you the right to throw out incoming artwork for the next year.
Image via Instagram/big_daddy-babylon
Did you know that Stuck On You has a range Personalised Sketchbooks for budding artists? Useful for honing artistic talents or at the very minimum, keeping them quiet for a bit longer.