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Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Magnetic Art Wall

Figuring out what to do with kids' art work is a big topic. After all, the kids come home with tons of projects, all of which are awe-inspiring and MUST be hung up - at least according to the kids. For those of us without lots of gallery space, there are several options.

We initially hung a line in Dori's room - using metal picture-hanging wire attached at both ends with cute hooks (we bought ours at Target). We hug the art with butterfly office-binder clips - we found some in pinks and purples. If the art didn't fit on the line, it didn't go up in the house. That way she had some control over it.

We now have a dedicated space - a magnetic wall. We painted two wall panels - one for each kid, with three or four coats of magnetic paint (you can buy it at Home Depot or any paint store - we used Rust-Oleum brand). The paint cost about $25 for a quart and we ended up using two quarts to make sure it was strong enough. Here's their guide. (They also have chalkboard paint and dry-erase paint, which would be fun projects too).
Looks lovely, huh? Well we painted over it with yellow paint to match the walls. Then we added the border. I got the trim at the hardware store, already primed. Then I painted it to match the door trim. The pieces cost $13 total (and we had some left over). You can nail it in yourself using a nail gun or hammer and nails or hire a handyman to do it for you..
Not all magnets will work on this paint. They have to be pretty strong magnets. You can try these pushpin magnets, rare earth magnets, or neodymium magnets. Some of our pictures just won't stick on the walls - the pictures on thicker paper.

My next project is to get some a few frames to put a few select pieces of artwork in. That will be the rotating gallery and we'll only have limited spot available for that.

1 comment:

  1. What a fun idea! I have been using ezcanvas.com to turn my 3 year old's artwork into canvas prints lately (which came out beautifully by the way!) but he and I are starting to compete for wall space (I'm a photographer). Maybe we will try this next.

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