If you have kids then it’s a safe bet that at some point or another you’ve had to stop them from drawing on the walls in various rooms of the house or cover it up with one of the kids beds! We’ve all been there, trying to sponge off crayon or felt pen marks from the living rooms walls! This is all part of being a parent – we need to teach our kids that works of art need to be created in an appropriate place (preferably not on a newly decorated surface).
I remember when I was a kid my Dad decided to repaper the living room in our house. He enlisted me and my sister to help strip off the old paper (which was brilliant fun) and then, before beginning to hang new paper, he gave us a pack of crayons and let us loose on the bare walls. We had a great time drawing huge pictures and scrawling graffiti for the rest of the day and he hung the new paper the following day (with strict instructions to us that we were not allowed to draw on it).
Once your kids are old enough to learn that drawing on the walls at random is not acceptable behaviour you can actually treat them to a drawing wall of their own. This can be in the playroom or in their bedroom and there are a couple of ways of going about this. One of the easiest is to paint one of the walls (or a section of it) with blackboard paint – they can then chalk on the wall to their hearts’ content and change their artworks with a swipe with a damp rag. If you don’t want to dedicate a whole wall to art, then why not use a large sheet of ply painted with blackboard paint? Make sure you sand the edges smooth, and then fit to the wall for a giant blackboard.
If your kids’ wardrobe has seen better days, then you can paint that with blackboard paint and give them a cupboard shaped canvas for chalking on – the possibilities are endless – and it’s a great way of spicing up old, scruffy looking furniture and encouraging the kids to be creative.
When my daughter was in her early teens, I painted one of her bedroom walls white, bought her some washable felt pens and let her loose on the wall. She had great fun with that and was the envy of all her friends (who were not allowed to draw or write on their bedroom walls). Admittedly, the washable felt pens didn’t totally wash off the walls, but when she’d had enough of her drawing wall, it was just a matter of giving the wall a good scrub before repainting. You would never have known that the wall had been drawn on.
Drawing walls are great fun for kids and, as long as you teach them that it’s the only wall they’re allowed to draw on (and they accept this), then there’s no harm done in the long run. It’s a great way of giving your kids free rein to be as creative as they wish.