Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Refrigerators Unite! Free Your Fridge From Clutter. . .

Finger paintings, birth announcements, recipes, magnets from every state in the continental U.S.- I know there's an icebox under there somewhere just begging to come out and play. Admit it, we've all shut the fridge door a little too hard before and sent artwork and magnets flying through the air. (Like we really need anything else drawing attention to the fact that we are sneaking a chunk of raw cookie dough as a late night snack.) So where do we display our most prized works of art and all of those sweet Christmas card photos??? "Anywhere but here!" Begs your pitiful Kenmore Elite. And yes, the sides of your fridge count too.

I was recently inspired to find alternative ways to display children's art while watching an episode of Design Star on HGTV. Design contestant Leslie Ezelle took a collection of colorful artwork and turned it into one beautiful collage that served as a permanent piece of art for one lucky family.

If you want to recreate this look for your own home, purchase a canvas from your local craft store along with a jar of Mod Podge craft adhesive. Select the artwork for your collage. I would recommend sticking with pieces drawn with crayons, cut from papers, or painted with durable paints. ****Before you Mod Podge over any priceless work of art, please test the Mod Podge on a "test" piece done in the same medium. This allows you to see if the colors are going to bleed or smudge beforehand. *** Now that you have a safe selection of artwork, experiment with their arrangent and lay them out on the table beside your canvas. Apply a thin coat of Mod Podge to the canvas, working in one small area at a time. Lay your artwork on top of the Mod Podged area. Apply another thin coat of Mod Podge over the top of the artwork to seal it in. Continue this method until the entire canvas is covered. Allow to dry and apply one more thin coat to the entire canvas. Voila! Instant master piece!
Here is another cute example from
If the Mod Podge scares you, you can always use double-sided scrapbooking tape and mount the art to a piece of poster board that has been cut to fit in a frame with glass. This is a little safer route to take if you don't trust your inner craft diva to handle the Mod Podge appropriately.

If the collage look doesn't tickle your fancy, frame individual pieces! Now you have the option to cluster your frames together or scatter them around your house for little "Proud Mama" pops in each room.

Creating a Brag Board is also a fun way to temporarily display your child's most recent work. For a beefy frame with lots of style, purchase an open back, ready made frame from your local craft store. To add pizazz, you can paint the frame in a bold, whimsical color. Go to your hardware store and have a corkboard insert cut to size. For even more pizazz, you can cover the board with a fun fabric; this just depends on how much pizazz you can handle. Your child's bedroom, a mudroom entryway, playroom, or bonus room are all great places to hang your Brag Board, and your children will love changing out their art themselves!
Ok, this one might have to be Mommy's Brag Board!
As for those pesky photos that slide down the front of the fridge every time you open the door, create an album exclusively for greeting card photos.
Now you have absolutely no reason to keep your exotic collection of magnets! Yippee!!! (And if you have a chip clip magnet, shame on you. Multiple layers of papers? Your fridge is not THAT cold. . . and yes, I am a guilty party.)

You've spent so much money on your gorgeous appliances, now show them off! And your kiddos will feel special too. =)

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