You Can Turn Your Kids’ Art into Wallpaper, and the Results Are Enchanting

When it comes to decluttering, kids’ art presents a unique problem: Yes, it sparks joy, so you want to keep it all, but with a new drawing, finger painting and ceramic pinch pot coming home every other day from school, it’s not long before you’re drowning in precious mementos (even if Sofia totally phoned in that Cheshire Cat last week). Organizing experts and designers have offered all kinds of solutions—take photos of it all so that it takes up digital space, not physical space; build scrapbooks and shadow boxes; secretly toss the less-special ones—but HGTV’s Grace Mitchell has come up with the most ingenious fix we’ve seen so far. She puts art on the walls.

Wait! Before you eye-roll so hard that you give yourself a migraine, it’s not what you’re thinking. Mitchell turned one family’s favorite designs into wallpaper, and the effect is pretty delightful.

In a recent episode of her show, One of a Kind, Mitchell met the Cowdens and soon learned their three daughters love to draw (and bubblegum pink, courtesy of the chandelier the family brought from their former house). The designer is a big believer in creating homes that tell people’s stories and for her custom wallpaper work, so it wasn’t long before those worlds collided.

kids art as wallpaper
Lisa Petrole/@lisapetrole

“What I love about this project is that you can pick your favorite, most special pieces, and the kids can know their work and creativity is valued!" she told PureWow. Mitchell worked with designer Ashley Keane to help digitize the girls’ work and lay it out so that the pattern repeated without looking too matchy-matchy. (The key is using a wide variety of images—22, in this case, instead of just five or six.)

She used Murals Your Way to custom-print the wallpaper panels and then installed the design so it extended from the wall to the ceiling (props to her installer, Ms. Becky, for matching up those seams!). The service is as simple as uploading an image, entering the dimensions for the space and choosing what type of mural material you’d like, from a commercial-grade paper that requires heavy-duty wallpaper paste to a peel-and-stick removable one. (Pricing starts at $150 for a 4-foot-11 square panel and varies based on the material you choose and the size you need.)

To give the wallpaper a more deliberately styled look, Mitchell and Keane added a subtle pink tint that matched the overhead light and paint on the far wall of the room. Paired with the thick rainbow stripes on the floor, the custom wallpaper makes the sunroom-turned-craft-room feel whimsical. It’s kid-friendly, but not kiddie, especially with the modern table and chairs.

The Cowdens may still keep those drawings, but they’ve been given extra special treatment. They’re something the family can admire every day, rather than once every few years when they pull them out of storage.

Get the look: Custom wallpaper (starting at $150); Kushner side chair ($79); Leilani Tulip table ($549); Four-arm chandelier ($975)

You can see more of Mitchell’s work at @astoriedstyle or by catching One of a Kind on Tuesdays at 10 p.m. ET on HGTV.

candace davison bio

VP of editorial, recipe developer, kitsch-lover

Candace Davison oversees PureWow's food and home content, as well as its franchises, like the PureWow100 review series and the Happy Kid Awards. She’s covered all things lifestyle...