Curating Your Kids’ Artwork with Pegboards and Portfolios
If you have preschool and elementary school-aged children, you know how hard it is to recycle any of their artwork. And you also know how much comes home during the school year. Piles and piles.
My friend Rachel has developed an ingenious, efficient, space-saving way of both displaying her kids’ artwork and storing everything for easy access and viewing in years to come.
She’s used this system for a few school years already, so she knows it works well. First, I’ll mention that Rachel does frame some of the artwork and has it hung in various places around her home. But, for an ongoing display and “art curation,” here’s what she does:
She installed two big pegboards in one of the bedrooms and uses big clips and s-hooks to hang a variety of artwork made by her three elementary school-aged children.
The clips allow her to hang 3-D artwork as well.
When the board gets too crowded, Rachel pulls every piece off one by one.
She then takes a photo of each artwork. She lays the piece on the floor and takes a photo looking downward, in natural light. (You’ll see what she does with the photos later.)
While doing so, she decides which pieces go into the big albums. She buys ITOYA art portfolios in a large size, which you can find on Amazon and in online art supply stores like Dick Blick or craft stores like Michael’s and A.C. Moore. The books have clear acid-free sleeves that make it easy to keep artwork in place.
Rachel doesn’t put every piece in – just a few select ones. She makes the tough choice to recycle a good many, knowing that she has taken a photo of them.
With the photos, Rachel uses a photo processing service online to make a collage, like the poster print from CVS, to create one large print with all small images arranged in a grid. That print goes into the album as well.
Each child gets his or her own portfolio with a clear description on the binder.
And, then, Rachel starts pinning new artwork on the wall again. It’s a great way to rotate an art exhibit in the home and keep your kids’ keepsakes organized.