Let's talk: Art for children.

Art for children's rooms. One of my favorite topics of discussion. I have such strong feelings about this (really?) and have come across a GREAT article on the REAL SIMPLE website. Holly (from Decor 8) talks about 1) the love of great nursery decor and 2) the increasing opportunities to buy inexpensive art for your kids. I was FLOORED when I saw one of my images up in her pick of 60 or so prints that she likes. I really had no idea. I was reading my first favorite children's artist blog and she mentioned this article and so I checked it out...and voila!

See that little teaparty action happening on the left there? geesh! About give me a heart attack. Real Simple is a favorite place for me, so that was extra special. Thanks Holly!

But I bring this up, because there is just a lot more out there than there used to be. When I was first pregnant I was trying to figure out what *style* I wanted to incorporate in my children's playroom and nursery. There is so much to consider when deciding! Color, theme, style, gender, baby or big kid, etc. I truly believe that you have to know your child and decorate with their personality in mind. For instance, I spent my entire pregnancy collecting fabric for Addie's crib bedding and after Addie was 6 months old, I abandoned it because it just wasn't "her".

Here are some of my favorite art prints for kids as well as some pointers to consider when purchasing art for your child:

1) Have your child test it. Circumstances won't always allow your children to see the art before you purchase it, but my children are my BEST testers. I print off a copy of all my new prints, and let them hold it. If I find them looking at it for a long time, or carrying it around with them, I know I have a winner. Addie has been known to sleep with a few.

2) Timelessness. You will most likely redo your child's room by the time they are 8. But will the art work for 6-8 years? Will it be too babyish in 3 years? Maybe it doesn't matter to you...but it sure is something to consider.

3) Does it have an easy color scheme? I am not "matchy matchy". I really don't like everything to be just perfect. But I do consider that in the next couple months, Addie will need a new bed and new bedding. Can I easily find bedding that will "go" with the decor she already has?

4) What is it teaching? Not every piece of art will tell a story, or teach something. In fact, most won't. But good art will stay in your child's mind for years to come. Do you remember what was in your room in your early years? I do. I had a picture of Jesus with the children, an embroidered "one, two buckle my shoe" piece and a print of the Goose Girl. I remember falling asleep staring at these images. They are a part of my first memories as a child. I can't say that they "taught" me anything, but there was a feeling of safety and comfort in them. What kind of comfort do you want to offer your child?

You will notice that the art above is different than my own style, but that is what I love about art for kids...why do "Matchy Matchy?" Let your children imagine a reason it all goes together. As an artist and mom, these thoughts are running through my head as I continually adjust my kids' room, but also as I create the art itself.

For more ETSY artists, check out this link: 100 ETSY artists. Some really great finds! Stay tuned for more...I could chat about this subject for hours!