Projects from school. Masterpieces made during playdates. Creations concocted at camp. There is no limit to the amount of artwork that kids bring home from their various adventures, and now that school is out for the summer, you’re probably being bombarded with even more papers than usual.
As a personal organizer, many of my clients are parents with exactly this problem: they are drowning in their children’s artwork, but they have no idea what to keep and what to (gasp!) get rid of!
I know that for some, even the idea of getting rid of a child’s work is upsetting. But please try to keep an open mind, because most of us simply do not have the space to accommodate every single drawing and project. I’m here to break it down for you, as we consider how to de-clutter your home of children’s art. Le’ts Dive in:
1) Kids Don’t Care
Okay, here’s the thing about kids and their artwork. The vast majority of kids DO NOT CARE if you keep the vast majority of their artwork! With the exception of a few key pieces that they slave over and feel specifically proud of, kids look more for your encouragement of their creativity and your reaction to what they made, than for you to hold onto every single piece of paper they present to you. They want your expression of pride – your smile, and for you to cheer them on. This is far more important to them than the artwork itself. Once you’ve made them feel proud of what they’ve created, they’ve gotten the emotional validation that they need, and the actual piece of paper is irrelevant.
2) Duplicates Are Dispensable
A lot of children draw the same things over and over again. When I was a kid, I was partial to rainbow drawings. But children don’t care to have 20 of the same rainbow drawing when they’re adults. Or butterflies for that matter. Or robots. Which brings me to my next point…
3) Save The Faves
Save a FEW things that are sentimental and memorable. Not only does this help declutter your space and make your home much more manageable, but it teaches your kids that they can’t keep everything and instills them with a knack for organizing at a young age. Teach them to attach meaning only to the things that truly bring them joy!
4) Let That Artwork Shine
Display these favorite pieces so that they can actually be enjoyed! If they are all tucked away in storage, neither you nor your child are able to appreciate them. Also, most pigment fades over time, so imagine unearthing these projects in 20 years only to discover that the colors are completely faded! You can display your child’s artwork in frames, or you can create a customized hardcover book of unlimited pieces of artwork by using Artkive
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So there you have it. I hope that this guide provides you with the encouragement to get your kid’s artwork under control! Wrangling this issue in your home alone can make your entire space feel so much less cluttered and more enjoyable.