I’m generally an organized parent, but organizing art supplies feels to me like worming my way through Dante’s Ninth Circle of Treachery. Maybe it’s because I love doing art projects with my daughter so much that when I see the supplies, I go all right brain, dreaming about new projects and leave the left brain in purgatory. I am going to out on a limb by saying that I am not alone in this battle.
The logical response here is to a) hire an organization expert or b) buy a product that is set up to keep all the art necessities in order. In the realm of option b, we have the Deluxe Art Center from Guidecraft. The beauty of this center is not just the spots to stow supplies, the attached paper roll or even the mod-looking wood stool. No, this center does something that is very difficult to do in organizing anything: It limits your options. That’s right, by not having EVERYTHING at your kids’ fingertips at once, they can focus more on a single project at hand and derive more inspiration for future projects in a clutter-free work area instead of getting distracted by a tray of 100 glitter shakers. Rather than sifting through 20 huge baskets of paper, yarn and felt, with this center you just have room for six small baskets below and a few dedicated cubbies above.
Now, what is a family of arts and crafts enthusiasts to do with the stuff that doesn’t fit in this center? STORAGE. Whether it’s a closet, armoire or an under-the-bed box, your kid will thank you for putting away the back stock of googly eyes and wooden heads until needed. Kids, like adults, typically do their best work in an organized environment with limited options. Think back to when you were a kid and perhaps did not get every toy you asked for. So, in the absence of everything you could ever ask for, you improvised. Barbies cruised in roller skates, shoes and tricked out shoe boxes. In the pre-teen years, when mall budgets were miniscule to non-existent, old T-shirts became mini-skirts.
Less really was more.
So get organized, provide some supplies (but not too many at a time) and give your kid some space to and let their independent spirits shine through.
You can purchase the Deluxe Art Center at Guidecraft.