View Full Version : OT - what do you do with your child's art work?
09-05-2007, 03:55 PM
I'm looking for ideas on what to do with my son's (DS 6) art work.
I put some of it on the fridge and walls for a while and rotate that as new stuff comes in. But what to do with it once it comes down? I hate to throw it all out, but I also don't want to just stick it in a box in storage because I know we'll never look at it again. I thought about putting my favorites in a 3-ring binder that we could flip through on occasion, but a lot of it is too big for a standard binder.
What do you do with your child's art work?
09-05-2007, 04:05 PM
I read once that a woman would take her kids to the local pizza place at the end of the school year. They would ask for a clean, new pizza box for each child. The kids then got to pick as much of their artwork as they wanted, and put it in the box. The rest that didn't fit got tossed. They labeled the boxes with the child's name and grade level and the boxes easily fit under the bed. I thought that was pretty smart.
09-05-2007, 04:28 PM
I have "keepsake" bins for each of my kids... but like you said, it's hard to keep each and every picture... we do keep lots of it, or if it is special to them I will make sure to keep it. We do hang things up as well...
I have heard of the pizza box idea as well... that might work well.
Another thing that I have heard of parents doing is to fill a wall all the way up with the childs art for the year, have them stand next to it and take a picture. That way in the picture, you have all the pictures. I haven't done this yet, my older girls don't bring home as much stuff right now... but my 4 year old probably will be able to fill the wall since he is in preschool. I am going to try this and see how it goes. Then our favorites will go into the keepsake box and the others will be given to family or put in the trash (as much as I hate to do that... ).
09-05-2007, 04:28 PM
Take a photograph of all the stuff that you want to keep, then toss it after the end of the school year. That way you'll always have it documented and you can choose from the best at the end of the year. Then you can print out that she made and put it into a photo album, too. You could have one album just for her artwork. And you'll be able to fit it onto a shelf.
DD is very prolific with her artwork. I used to save everything until it got to be too much. It's hard to throw it away but you can't save it all.
Case in point. My mom saved a stack of our school work every year. It was a great idea, but it got to be burdensome carrying that stuff around with me every time I moved. So, I went through and kept what I liked and tossed the rest. Now it's in a hanging file folder in my file cabinet.
Hope this helps.
09-05-2007, 04:30 PM
I have an under the bed platic storage bin for each child. I rotate the artwork on the frige and sliding glass door and then if it's a piece I really like we put it in the box, if not it goes in the recycling bin. There is no way to save everything without having to take out stock in a mini-storage place :rotfl: . My DS is older and has a lot more stuff then my DD, so when the box is getting a bit full I go through it with him and we determine what he really wants kept and what we can throw out. I keep all the cards they give me in their bin too, especially the cute ones about what a great mom I am :rotfl2: :rotfl2: :rotfl2: . I figure in a few more years all I am going to hear is what a mean one I am :mad: , so I better keep the ones from when they thought I was a cool mom :hippie: .
09-05-2007, 05:20 PM
I take pictures of my favorite pieces (or my kids' favorites!) and then scrapbook them with my other pictures. Sometimes I just scrapbook the pictures like regular pictures, but other times I actually use their artwork as a decorative accent on a page. For example, I might cut out a cute pumpkin and use it on a Halloween page. I do make sure I label each picture with whose artwork it is.
I then throw away most (as hard as it is!) but I do keep a few in a plastic bin in the basement. I keep maybe 10 pieces per each child each year. No one ever looks at those, though, but we do look at the pictures in the albums!
09-05-2007, 05:45 PM
For current art work I have 2 artwork picture frames I got at Pottery Barn. You can slide it and out. I rotate it. IKEA makes a cute and much cheaper version for $2.99. I also do the plastic "treasure" bin thing for each of my kids. Actually, each one of us has one. They are kept in the basement storage room on shelves.
09-05-2007, 06:53 PM
Do you have a good flatbed scanner? You could scan some of the "lesser" art pieces and then toss them. I don't have kids, but this is what I'm planning to do with all the old art stuff my mom brought to me. Dang I wish there'd been cheap scanners around when I was growing up - would have saved me a lot of time if mom had done it! :)
09-05-2007, 06:57 PM
I have memo boards up in our kitchen. All of the artwork for the month goes there. At the end of the month I have my DD stand next to the displayed art work and I take a photo.
Then I decide what I want to keep. I keep unique pieces that my child did completely (or almost completely) on her own. I usually keep one or two pieces a month. I toss the rest.
Then at the end of the year, I go through what I've kept throughout the year. I toss some and keep some. So by the end of the year I have about 5 items to keep.
I have framed some of the art and some is in an acid free box for long term keeping.
09-05-2007, 07:02 PM
Thankfully we have several file cabinets with some room in them. I do a folder per boy for each year. Especially for the younger times of handprints and such. Then it goes on the fridge for a bit or the art section of their room, then the file. That way when they get older they will have all of this keepsakes. Granted some doesn't make it, falls apart etc. I try to keep the one's that I can tell they have spent alot of time on or are really important to them. The ones of a few scribbles on a blank sheet of paper that they did during nap time not so much. So far though I have been impressed!:thumbsup2
09-05-2007, 08:09 PM
We've used my DD's artwork to decorate the walls in our playroom. I've saved a few special pieces in her baby book. She likes to hang them up herself:)
09-05-2007, 08:14 PM
I take pics or scan artwork and save it on disc. I do save special projects (hand prints, large gifts, etc). My parents saved a lot of my things and now they just sit there. It is fun to go back and look at them with my kids, but that doesnt happen very often.
09-05-2007, 08:50 PM
Wow! These are all great ideas! I like the photo idea, because we do hang up a lot (and usually the better/more interesting stuff), so that would be an easy way to document those. I think I'll put some of the larger pieces in the basement play room. We don't have anything on the walls down there yet. :blush: I like the pizza box idea, too, and the picture frame at IKEA. We have one from Pottery Barn but if I could get more like that for cheaper, that would be cool.
09-05-2007, 09:06 PM
a woman I know scans most of the artwork then sends the originals to family members, Great idea!!!
09-06-2007, 07:58 AM
My DD loves "arts and crafts" so I always have lots of art around. I do a few things.
I hang up favorites or good representations of her age for awhile and then file them in a three ring binder in chronological order. Ones that are oversized - I either fold or cut them down (if it won't affect the art) or just get rid of those after they have been hung up for awhile.
Another thing I do is write thank you notes on the back of her art and mail it to family members. The family loves it because they get a thank you note for whatever they bought for/did for DD plus a piece of her art to hang up. I love it because then I am sharing some of her "masterpieces" instead of throwing them out.
I also do throw stuff out - I hate to do it but I would need a room to hold all of the daily pieces she creates. Most of the generic scribbles, coloring pages, cutting of stuff etc just gets pitched.
09-06-2007, 08:15 AM
It goes on the fridge for a while and then I either scrapbook it or take a picture of it and scrapbook that. Sometimes, if it's a seasonally or holiday themed picture I cut the leaf, Santa, ghost, etc..out and use it as an embellishment in our holiday or seasonal pages. It pleases the kids to no end and will be a nice way to remember those times of their lives.
09-06-2007, 08:22 AM
WOW!!! Some great ideas on here! I have the same problem with my kids! My 5th grader is not bringing as much home now, but my 2nd grader brings home something almost every day. I never know what to do with it! I like the pizza box idea! May have to try that one! Thanks for all the ideas!!!:thumbsup2
When my girls were very young, I made sure anything that we saved had a name and a date on it. When you look back at it 10 years later, it means more when you can say, "Look, you drew this when you were two!". I also asked my kids what they had drawn and wrote it out next to the picture. I got some pretty hilarious answers. We have a good laugh about it now.
I had an accordion-type folder that they labeled by year for each section. That worked for a while, but now we've moved everything into file drawers with a file for each year. I do have them go through stuff and toss things occasionally, but I have very prolific artists in my house. :rotfl:
We've also scanned some artwork, and I also have a couple special art portfolios (acid free) for some of the treasured pieces. I got them from the container store - it's like a book with plastic sleeves. I got one in 8 1/2x 11 and one in 9x12.
09-06-2007, 09:40 AM
My DS7 wants to be an artist! We get lots and lots of artwork. When he would give Daddy a piece of Art, he would staple it to the garage wall, since that is where he spends a lot of time and the walls needed the help. Now almost all of his art & DD's art goes on the garage walls! I have a pretty large laundry room and I decorated those walls too. If a piece that they really love seems to be getting discolored and they want to keep it we take it down & store in a tote.
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