Few gifts are more heartfelt than a child’s artwork. An original “masterpiece” matted and framed makes a lovely present, but there are lots of other ways to turn a child’s craft project or work of art into a unique, unforgettable holiday gift.
Convert it to Canvas
When it comes to displaying art on the wall, a stretched canvas offers a modern, gallery-like presentation. There are a couple of ways to apply a child’s artwork to canvas: you can either paste the picture directly onto a pre-stretched canvas using gesso, or you can send the artwork off to a canvas print service.
Create a Calendar
Give the gift of year-round artwork by converting paintings or drawings into a calendar. The DIY-savvy can even create a wipeable, reusable calendar with custom artwork using printable templates, laminating pouches, and coil binding. This tutorial provides the printables and breaks down the process. For a less labor-intensive option, upload artwork with a scanner and use a photo printing service like Shutterfly or Snapfish.
Compile an Album
There are several easy ways to compile a series of original artwork into a fun, flip-through format. A pre-bound blank journal lets kids decorate the pages by illustrating a story. You can also insert artwork into the sleeves of a photo album, or turn it into a scrapbook and let kids add embellishments like stickers.
Take Advantage of Transfer Paper
Convert your child’s artwork to a digital format using a scanner. If you don’t have access to a scanner, you could also take a picture of the artwork – just make sure everything is squared and the image fills the frame. Once the artwork is in a .jpg or other picture file format, you can print it to iron-on transfer paper. You can then apply the masterpiece to a t-shirt, canvas tote, apron, or other fabric item.
Try a Specialty Printing Service
With the plethora of photo and specialty printing services out there, you can turn a two-dimensional image into virtually anything from jewelry to memory games. There are tried-and-true standbys like photo mugs and keyrings, but there are also lots of fantastic new options. Services like selva3D will convert an image into a 3D model file, which comes to life with a 3D printing service. You can even turn a picture into a plush with Child’s Own Studio or Budsies.com, which would make a fantastic gift for the little artist.