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  • Writer's pictureWendy Elizabeth

How to Draw on your Walls

When my daughter was little, I was constantly cleaning the walls (okay, well not really, but I should have been). I know lots of mothers who had an entire arsenal of cleaning equipment, and spent a lot of time chasing down the messes, and researching the best way to get colored marker off the refrigerator door.

My (lazy?) solution was always to give my daughter places where she could paint or color, without me worrying, and without stifling her creativity. If it was sunny outside, I would put her in a bathing suit, and let her paint anywhere she wanted to. It didn’t matter if paint spilled, or if she went off the paper; she could add dirt and worms to her art, or paint the grass all day long if she wanted to.

Inside my house, I would use masking tape to outline several large shapes on the wall. She would color inside the tape, and when we peeled it off, she had drawn on the walls, and I had new artwork. Every few weeks I would paint over them, and give her new ones to fill in.

After a while, I wanted her to have more space, so, I used chalkboard paint on my walls. Admittedly, this may not be for the neatnik, or a clutter-free home (it will smudge, and can look quite messy) but it is still definitely one of my favorite options for children of all ages.

As life went on, the chalkboard wall was constantly used, but my daughter still needed actual paper to draw on. Most children want to draw or paint with messy abandon, and a small, neat piece of paper is not their preferred canvas. So, I decided to buy one of those giant rolls of newsprint paper that attach to the wall. She could tear off as much as she wanted (by herself, any time) draw anything at all (any size), and having unlimited sheets of paper gave her an immense feeling of freedom. (We would pin it across the wall afterwards, and she would marvel at the sheer size of what she had created).

Of course, I realize that not every home can be covered in chalkboard paint, and some parents may object to painted worms in the backyard, but there are other ways to keep your walls clean, and your child creative:

  1. Consider using a bold, darker color in every room; it will look clean for a lot longer, won’t be as tempting as white, and unwanted drawings will just seem like abstract patterns on the wall.

  2. Compromise, with a decorative and creative statement that you all can enjoy. This Picture Frame Wallpaper (above) by Graham & Brown is perfect for any room of the house (use a lot, or a little).  

Honestly, no matter how much you try, children will always want to draw on walls; so why not give in, make up your own rules, and just let them….. 

For more by Wendy and the Blue Giraffe, go to:

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