Organizing Kids Art Spaces

Kids need a space to do art.  Every house should have one.  It may be an entire room dedicated to art producing or just a corner in one room.  Whatever it is, it is necessary.  I have been reading a lot of books about art lately and I am learning that scribbling and doing art as a young child is essential to learning to read and write. There are lots of things you can do to help your kids do more art everyday.  You don't need to do art projects with them that are parent directed.  In fact sometimes those types of projects like my wreath and bouquet project are actually not the best learning projects.  I have learned that giving a child art materials and blank paper is a lot better for them.  They will learn from those materials and grow and develop in their own way.  Art is creativity and telling a child how to do it or having a right way is not creativity.

In a lot of ways reading this information made me feel better.  I do provide a lot of free range art projects in my house.  I started this blog to help it be my focus in my family life, but I was finding I couldn't post anything because we weren't always doing huge beautiful projects.  I got sick for about two weeks and doing a project was hard for me, but my children were drawing every day during that time.

My husband hates having the art materials available at any given moment to the children.  It is dangerous.  I cannot tell you how many times my children have drawn on themselves, walls, windows, couches, and other inappropriate places.  I can tell you that I use washable everything and I haven't yet (knock on wood) had anything stain or get completely ruined.

We live in a really small house.  We don't have much room for an art space.  My mother is giving my youngest and easel for her birthday so that will go in her room and will be great for her to create often.  I have a desk in my other children's room and a small table in our family room.  All these places are available to the children to create.  I had an idea the other day of taking an over the door shoe holder and using it to store all our art supplies.  It was perfect!  I bought a tote with different areas in it for supplies and loaded it with our favorite things: colored pencils, pencils, markers, colored paper, white paper, glue stick, and scissors.  This tote can easily be moved to any area of the house for creating.  Often when I am cooking, my kids want to be right with me.  Our kitchen is so small I am constantly running over children.  If I put the tote on the table they stay out of my way and they are happy to be near me.

Over the door shoe holder.  I put more "dangerous" art supplies at the top so the kids have to ask me for them.  The shoe organizer fits canning jars very nicely for storage.  I also found some cylinder storage containers with see through lids at the dollar area in target which are perfect for holding googly eyes, ribbons, and other crafty small items
art tote
 These are two simple ideas for storing art and promoting art everyday with your children.  I have found that if I just put a piece of paper in plain site with a couple of markers next to it, I don't have to say a thing and within a little bit of time one child will have created something wonderful on that paper without being told or urged to do so.  Try it!  See what your child will create without being told to.

My kids have gotten pretty good at just creating without me.  One night I was out grocery shopping and my husband was running on the treadmill.  My children were essentially taking care of themselves.  When I came home I found two children who transformed themselves into super heroes.  This was done all on their own without a parent showing them where to cut and paste.  It made me happy that my children love to create and be creative.  I hope it is something I continue to foster in them.

Young at Art is the book I am reading right now.  It is written by Susan Striker.  I will post a full review when I finish reading it, but so far it is excellent and I am learning a lot from her.


  1. I love the over the door hanger idea! We have a set of cabinets that have been taken over, some cabinets are locked and some are open, depending on the danger-level (i.e. does it say "will wash away with water?").

  2. What a great art storage area- we have a chest full of art supplies for the monkeys and I am constantly re-organizing it but my theory has always been that they can access everything themselves.
    Nice to find your blog

  3. The shoe holder is a wonderful idea. I will have to add one to my shopping list as it would be a perfect extension to the storage in our art space.

  4. I love all the cute ideas on your blog! I am totally going to buy a shoe holder and put supplies in it. Beautiful Blog!

  5. This is such a great idea. I was searching for how to reorganize our art supplies and found your post. Thanks for sharing. I think we'll be trying that.


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