From Kid’s Craft to Framed Art

Tonight’s fun project was inspired by an idea I had last year. I found a child’s carefully drawn snowman, in a box of keepsakes from Greg’s parents’ house. The child who drew this cute snowman was Greg’s brother, Ray. I estimated the drawing was done in 1958. I framed the snowman, using a plaid scrapbook paper for the background.

I have enjoyed using this framed art as part of my Christmas decor. Ray passed away in 2002, making the snowman very special. I think of him when I look at his artwork. That project in turn inspired me to create framed art from vintage Christmas cards from the early 1900s.

Earlier this year, I uncovered more Christmas crafts, created long ago by another child. These construction paper pieces were made by Greg, when he was nine or ten years old. Being a parent, one thing I embraced long ago is fairness. Having turned his brother’s snowman into Christmas decor, it seemed right to do the same with Greg’s holiday candle and poinsettia!

Tonight I assembled materials to transform these childhood keepsakes into framed art. One slight challenge that I had was that Greg’s artwork wouldn’t fit within an 8×10 frame, as Ray’s snowman had. It was simple enough to buy larger frames. An 11×14 frame worked and at Michaels they were on a ” buy one, get one” special. Perfect.

The challenge part was finding a holiday themed paper large enough to serve as the background for the artwork. Scrapbook papers don’t come in that bigger size. I bought a roll of Christmas wrap, thinking that could be an option, and gathered my supplies, which included sheets of 9×12 holiday scrapbook papers.

When I opened the first frame, and discovered there was indeed an actual mat included, with an 8×10 opening, I made a quick decision. I liked the idea of using the scrapbook paper and the mat…and allowing the artwork to rest outside the mat, rather than within it. It was a literal “outside of the box” project!

Double sided tape secured the festive construction paper candle to the mat and background, and into the frame the repurposed artwork went. I used a plain green background for the poinsettia and in a few minutes the second framed art was completed.

The framed poinsettia is upside down in this photo, however, I am pleased with the results.

These simple projects are meaningful to me. Creating framed art from childhood treasures honors the artist, provides a lasting keepsake, and they are great additions to my holiday decor. I would rather have these pieces of art by Ray and Greg, which are almost 60 years old and 55 years old respectively, on display where they can be appreciated and enjoyed, rather than forgotten in a storage box.

I think Ray would smile over his framed snowman. And I know Greg takes delight in seeing a keepsake from his childhood elevated to framed art and displayed as well.

I must sort through more boxes…and see what other treasures I can find.

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