“Would I be bad parent if I threw this away?” If you are a parent, you may have asked yourself a question like this. Or maybe I’m the only one who has questioned myself when deciding what to keep and what to toss. I’m talking about artwork. Can or should we keep everything our children make? There are only so many things to do with kid artwork. Or is there?

Before tossing that masterpiece, see if one of these might work…

  • Frame the art to hang on the wall at your child’s eye level

  • Make a calendar of your child’s art

  • Put the art in a storage bin under the bed

  • Turn the art into a coffee mug

  • Make a scrapbook from the art

  • Use the art for your holiday cards to highlight your child’s work

  • Put it on the refrigerator to make an art gallery

  • Display 3D art (e.g., pottery, soap sculptures, etc.) in the home

  • Use the art to give a gift to someone

  • Collect the art for a portfolio

  • Take a digital photo of the art and make an e-portfolio

  • Tape art to the windows around the house

  • Make stationery out of your child’s art

  • Have an art show in your backyard where you celebrate the artist…all attendees can leave with some art

Do you have any ways you like to archive children's artwork? Please share. I’m starting to run out of ideas. Help!

Painting a wooden birdhouse

Painting a wooden birdhouse

Fancy Cancy

Decorations for a party can get expensive. Make your own works-of-art when you decorate for a party. You and your child can get your creative juices flowing and enjoy making a project together.

Here is a craft for a table centerpiece called, Fancy Cancy. All you need is a clean empty can, paint, glue, scraps of fabric, and ribbon. First, glue fabric scraps around the sharp part of the can for safety. Then paint the outside of a clean can. Add ribbon and any other embellishments when the paint is done drying. Glitter and beads can add a finishing touch. Once the Fancy Cancy is done you can fill the can with your favorite party items (e.g., cut flowers from the yard, candy like tall red vines, decorated chop sticks, name cards, etc.).

Facilitate your child’s creativity by noticing what s/he is interested in talking about while creating art. You can make the Fancy Cancy together, or each person can have their own can to decorate. Have a party preparing for the party!

Fancy Cancy

Fancy Cancy

Marbled Art

You don’t have to be Martha Stewart to have a little fun with scissors, ink, and shaving cream. If you are looking for a fun activity to do this month with children, why not try the ancient craft of marbling in celebration of National Craft Month!

The art of marbling goes back centuries. It was used for official purposes and documents, as well as for decorative purposes. Marbling can be done in so many different ways. Marbled designs can be applied to paper, fabric, three-dimensional surfaces and more. No two designs are alike. Here is an activity to get you started making marbled art.

Materials: pan, shaving cream (the white foamy kind), food coloring/dye, paper, and toothpicks

Create: Spray the shaving cream into the pan. Add the food coloring to the shaving cream. Use the toothpicks to create swirls in the white shaving cream. Next, gently lay your paper on the surface of the marbled design you made. Lift the paper and scrape off any excess foam. Voila! You have marbled paper! Let the paper dry for at least a day.

When your paper craft is done drying you can make all sorts of things out of your designs. Stationery, bookmarks, and wall art can result from your marbling. L’arte d’arrangiarsi is an Italian phrase that means to create something from nothing. Create something beautiful today!

Marbled Art

Marbled Art