Category Archives: DIY

3 ideas for children’s artwork

It’s that time of the year again…when your children come home from school with a giant folder of art and you wonder just what to do with it all. Or if your amazingly talented offspring will notice if a few go “missing”. You can only frame so many finger paintings and disproportionate elephants before you run out of wall space and/or money because professional framing doesn’t come cheap!

So, I have 3 ideas for you on displaying and keeping your children’s artwork that don’t involve heaps of money or an overcrowded refrigerator door.

Idea no.1 DIY-childrens-artwork-1

This cunning little idea came about by accident after a framed poster mysteriously fell off the wall – only Kipper the cat was in the room at the time, so the reason will remain a mystery until he develops the power of speech. After clearing away the broken glass and faded poster, we were left with a wooden frame and the white foam core backing. The foam core is nice and spongy, a bit like a pinboard. So I thought that if I pinned an artwork onto the foam core with push pins, it could easily be replaced when we needed a change but still looked smart in the now glass-less frame. Take a look…

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Idea no.2 DIY-childrens-artwork-3

I’ve had this idea up and running for a while now, and so I know it works like a bomb. If you’re like me and detest messy Prestiked or Sticky Tacked art on the wall – it’s called tacky for a reason – then you’ll love this idea. It’s a bit more of a spend, but the results are long-lasting and versatile. I bought thick corkboard tiles from the hardware store, glued them to the top half of a wall in Seb’s room then painted them with a single coat of white wall paint. The result is a fresh white surface that is actually one giant pinboard. We change the art and posters regularly without any fuss or bother and it’s a great way to rotate all the art that comes home from school. Here it is…

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Idea no.3 DIY-childrens-artwork-6

Now this idea gets put into action when you’ve removed the artwork but don’t want to throw it away…as if we’d ever do that! Get a lever arch file for each child with their name on it and write the year when the art was done on the back of the picture. Then simply punch it, practise your origami skills by folding the bigger pictures, and file it as a space-saving way of keeping all the 5 billion paintings that come home over the years. I find this the easiest way of documenting and keeping your child’s artwork in one compact place without it taking up the entire top cupboard – unless you have 12 children, of course. It’s also easily accessible for adding new pictures and remembering the old ones. My friend told me that her girls spent a quiet hour or so, lovingly paging through their files of colourful painted memories. This is what I mean…

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So don’t despair when that tower of paintings comes home, proudly clutched in your little one’s hands. You now have 3 easy ideas to display their colourful creations! Please share your ideas for exhibiting children’s art in the comment section…I love to know!

all photographs by Megan Smith

DIY leather bookmarks

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After a busy year, I’m keeping this DIY super simple. It will make the perfect teacher gift or a handmade present for a fellow bibliophile. My son has his annual Market Day at school tomorrow – all items have to be home made, which I quite like. It’s a nice antidote to this digital age of plastic and technology. So we came up with an inexpensive idea for one of his items to make and sell, involving a bag of leather offcuts I bought from Woodheads Leather Merchants. Their bargain bins are filled with offcuts that you buy per weight. Rummaging through, we found the perfect inspiration for his Market Day item – rectangles of soft leather in colourful sorbet shades. Then we chose different coloured leather thong, sold per metre, and a roll of neon orange waxed cotton thread.

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We ‘bookmark’ aplenty on the computer. Now it’s time to bookmark your books for real. Continue reading to see how easy it is to make these leather bookmarks…

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