Have you ever walked into your child’s room or playroom to discover a life-size wall mural of his or her own making? As much as you might want to applaud the creativity, your first reaction is most likely to enter panic mode and frantically clean up.
Are you, like many parents, at your wit’s end with finding writing on the walls, but unsure of how to redirect the efforts of your budding artist? The good news is that there is a happy medium: one that can foster your child’s artistic side while preserving your walls from permanent marker destruction. With a few key products and ideas, your child’s space can be transformed into a creative, interactive and educational environment that is above all, fun!
Officially the best thing since sliced bread, removable and reusable wall decals are every parent’s (and decorator’s) dream! Innovative art made easy, wall stickers serve not only as a simple and cost-effective way to decorate, but also as a cool, interactive toy. Available in both vinyl and fabric and in countless sizes, colors and styles, “peel and stick art” can be repositioned and played with over and over again, without any damage to the walls. Now you won’t have to say “don’t touch that” when your child plays with the art on the walls, whether it’s a marching parade of animals, letters, numbers, a fleet of vehicles or dress-up dolls. The possibilities are endless.
Turn your wall into a blank canvas with chalkboard paint. This brilliant (and easy to use) invention can be found at your local craft or home improvement store and even comes in an array of fun colors if you want to venture away from classic black. You may opt to turn an entire wall in your kitchen into a giant chalkboard so the kids can enjoy drawing, with the added benefit of being able to write your grocery list or phone messages right on the wall! Painting the side of your kitchen island or below the chair rail on a bedroom or playroom wall works great, too. If you are feeling less committal, you may opt for peel and stick chalkboard decals or dry erase board decals for a similar result. Dry erase and chalkboard wall decals come in a variety of fun shapes and themes, from dots and elephants to flowers and owls.
(Rosenberry Rooms, $107)
Create your own art gallery! There is nothing more fun than a solid afternoon spent in an arts and crafts session. The question is, what to do with all of the wonderful creations once you’re done? Displaying the ever-changing artwork in your own “gallery” will add personality to the room while spurring discussions and inspiring the imagination in a way that ultimately encourages more creating.
Using the material of your choice (e.g., rope, twine or ribbon) simply create a clothesline, hang it from one end of the room to the other, and add clothespins to easily attach and switch out the latest projects. Or, you may decide to take advantage of a magnetic chalkboard painted wall to affix your art. Another fun idea is to hang 5-10 frames in a variety of shapes and coordinating colors on the wall, whether in a grid, or in a collage format, where you can showcase art.
Install a larger than life wall mural. When you were a kid, did you imagine that your bedroom was a boat on an ocean voyage, or that you were on a safari or walking with dinosaurs while in the playroom? The introduction of easy to install wall murals, available in both prepasted and peel and stick formats, takes interactive decor to new heights. Get ready for an underwater, space or circus adventure, to name just a few. An all-time favorite is a wall-size map, which not only looks cool but teaches geography, too.
Watch: How to make chalkboard paint
Learn how to make your own chalkboard paint.