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What to do with your kids' artwork

If you've ever wanted to preserve your kids' artwork in a unique way, look no further than today's Grommet -- KiDoodles Kids' Art Jewelry. And in case you needed more ideas for managing that pile of wonderful artwork your kids bring home almost daily, here are some simple and practical tips from our guest blogger, Roxanna.


Tips to help you organize and preserve your kids' artwork

bkids-hand-messy-art-projecty Roxanna Sarmiento from Miguelina

Is there anything sweeter than the day your child presents you with their first masterpiece? You beam with pride and admire the bold splashes of color, the masterful brushstrokes, the way the macaroni is glued just so. The artwork gets displayed with great fanfare in a place of honor. And then, the next day, your child shows up with more art. The same thing happens the next day, and the day after that. Before you know it, you are drowning in preschool art.

How do you manage the endless stream of masterpieces without resorting to throwing things out in the middle of the night? (Few things are as pitiful as the face of a child finding one of their masterworks in the recycling bin.)

(Uh, so I hear.)

Step 1: Everything gets to shine!

The key to conquering art clutter is to designate a spot in the house where every piece of art gets displayed as it arrives. Consider it a rotating exhibit. Be creative and make a display that works with your life and your decor - you can cover cork board in pretty fabric and pin the art to the wall, or tie a string and hang the art with colorful clips, or you can use frames to display the masterpieces and change them frequently.

Remember - nothing will be up there forever, so there’s no need for big decision making! (Be sure to write the date and the child’s description of what their work is about before you pin it up. This will come in handy later.)

Step 2: Collect

At some point your display will get full and you will have to take something down. A box or large file folder is a handy place to put art away quickly so that you actually update the display. Be sure to discard obvious things that you don’t need to keep.

Go over your art collection at regular intervals. (Monthly? Twice a year? It depends on how prolific your little artist is.)

Step 3: Archive

This is the fun part - once you’ve accumulated a substantial collection it’s time to choose your favorites! Scan or photograph each item, and create and art book (online services like Blurb or Snapfish make it easy) - you can organize the artwork by month, or theme - write your child’s description of each item by each picture. (Remember when we told to you write this information on the back of each piece as it arrives in your home? Now you know why!)

Kids will love to have a portfolio of their work, and you can order extras for grandma and grandpa.

Step 4: Keep the best, discard the rest.

Your artbook is sure to become a precious family heirloom, but nothing beats the original. Be sure to save some, but remember: Save the best, discard the rest.


  • schmutzie Says:

    One of my favourite finds as an adult was finding my father's file of my childhood artwork. It was so touching to see that side of him all those years later.

  • Angella Says:

    I bought a bin for each of the kids. I'm pretty tough about what goes in there, or I'd need a bin per month. I have scanned a few items for posting on Flickr/Facebook, but never thought to make a photo book. I totally need to do that!

  • Nataly Says:

    The last tip is so important -- to only save the best. I am trying to get better at this.

    Schmutzie -- the other day I was digging around in my parents' basement and found a bin with some of my artwork from when I was a kid. Boy, was that a nice feeling:)

  • Miguelina Says:

    You guys will love this - What does my son's teacher greet me with today? A box FULL of new artwork to display and store. I'm telling you, it's never ending. (But so sweet!)

  • julespieri Says:

    I totally endorse Angella's tip to always write the name of the child and the date, lightly in pencil on the art. If you have more than one kid you will thank yourself. Also, if it is relevant, add a little comment like "first time he drew a face" or "self-portrait". Believe me, years down the road, those events that you thought you would never forget all become a big blur.

    I've also used her idea about how to display the art. I strung a simple clothesline strung across our dining room windows and I kept a rotating display of art there. When my oldest graduated from high school, and we threw a family party, I replaced the art with photos of him growing up.

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