Create Gifts Out of Your Kids' Artwork

With just a few simple steps, you can help your kids transform their favorite artwork into sweet keepsake presents that relatives, teachers, and friends will absolutely love. 

1 of 6

1. Iron-On Pouch

Lucy Schaeffer 

1. Iron-On Pouch

This is the perfect, practical gift for school friends. Experiment with using multiple images on one pouch or cutting out selected images from different drawings.

What to do: Photograph artwork, reduce the size to fit a small canvas pouch, and print onto iron-on transfer paper. Peel off backing and iron the image in place. We ordered plain white canvas pouches from inkodye.com ($12 each), but you can also use this technique on plain canvas tote bags. 

2 of 6

2. Candleholder

Lucy Schaeffer 

2. Candleholder

Your child's creativity will light up the room! Give these quick crafts to aunts, uncles, or teachers.

What to do: Scan or take a high-resolution digital photograph of a horizontal artwork. Print it on a 81/2 x 11-inch sheet of plain vellum paper. Wrap the paper around a cylindrical glass vase (measure and cut the paper to fit) and adhere the overlapping edges with double-sided tape. Trim, then discard excess paper. Place a battery-operated tea light inside the vase. 

3 of 6

3. Canvas Silhouette

Lucy Schaeffer

3. Canvas Silhouette

Your kid will get a kick out of creating an image of himself or a beloved pet. For a wow-worthy result, paint a white stretched canvas in a bright color and choose art that contrasts.

What to do: Take a photo of your child or pooch in profile. On a computer, enlarge the photo so it fills the screen, then tape a piece of butcher paper to the monitor. Trace the image with a soft pencil; remove the paper from the monitor and cut out the silhouette with scissors. Use a glue stick to adhere it to the back of your artwork, then carefully cut around the silhouette's border. Flip silhouette over, then use white glue to attach it to a stretched canvas. Let dry totally, then spray with a final coat of clear gloss varnish. 

4 of 6

4. Paper Globe

Lucy Schaeffer

4. Paper Globe

Help your child make a cool ornament from strips of her masterpieces.

What to do: Cut her paintings into 12 strips 6 x 1/2-inch wide. Use a push- pin to poke a hole at the end of each strip. Thread a needle with a 15-inch length of embroidery floss. Tie several knots at the end, and add a bead. Stack the strips, then pass the needle through all the holes at one end. Bend the strips into a C shape. Thread the needle through the other end. String on another bead and tie a knot to hold it in place. To form a loop for hanging, bring the end of the floss back down to the bead, then tie several knots to secure the bead. Fan out the strips evenly to form a globe. 

5 of 6

5. Covered Journal

Lucy Schaeffer

5. Covered Journal

Jazz up store-bought notebooks with your little Picasso's doodles.

What to do: Place an open notebook on the back of the artwork. Using a pencil, trace around the book leaving a 1/2-inch border. Cut out, using scissors. Coat the outside of the notebook with a glue stick. Holding the notebook open, press the spine down on the back of the artwork, then press down the covers. Smooth wrinkles. Cut out a notch at the top and bottom of the cover's spine, and cut a diagonal line at the four corners. Glue down each corner, then fold over and glue down each edge along the inside of the book. Repeat process, using clear Con-Tact paper. 

6 of 6

6. Plant Pot

Lucy Schaeffer

6. Plant Pot

A personalized terracotta pot makes a terrific hostess gift. Just don't forget to include a houseplant!

What to do: Paint the outside of a terracotta pot with brightly colored acrylic paint. Let dry. Apply glue to the pot, then press on cut-up artwork pieces to form patterns or images. Use a brush to apply a layer of white glue over the entire outside of the pot. Make sure that all the edges of the artwork pieces are smoothed down; let dry. Spray on several light layers of clear gloss varnish to finish.