Disclosure: this guide was sent to me for the purpose of review. No other compensation was received. All opinions are honest and my own. Affiliate links appear in post.
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When my 7yo son Eli is in the mood to be artistic, I have to look in several different places to help assemble his supplies. Markers are in one drawer, paper on a shelf in the other room, paints and brushes in a third location altogether. I appreciate his desire to be creative, but I have yet to dedicate a space that makes it easier for him to do so.
Enter Megan Schiller. Megan is a former preschool teacher and art studio owner with a passion for creating children’s art spaces. In fact, she runs a firm in the San Francisco Bay Area called The Art Pantry, where she helps homes and schools establish dedicated spaces for creativity (see her site for some wonderful Before & After photos). According to her website:
Creating an art space for kids is not just about designing a cute space. It’s about making a space that is inviting, organized, age appropriate, inspiring, and empowering. It’s about giving kids access to tools and materials so that they can freely explore their thoughts, ideas, and emotions. With an accessible art space and a little bit of guidance, kids will build creative confidence, DIY skills, and the foundation for a lifetime of creative thinking.
Wanting to reach a wider audience than just her one-on-one clients, Megan Schiller has now translated her 10 years of experience into a DIY guide for everyone called The New Playroom.
The New Playroom (PDF) includes:
- 34 pages of step-by-step instructions on how to set up an art space for kids
- Tips on measuring, layout, organizing and more!
- Inspiring photos and stories
- Essential art supply list plus extra goodies
- DIY projects
- Tips on exploring art supplies with kids and keeping them engaged over time
- Additional resources for shopping, design, and art activities
- Free bonus guide (PDF) Invitations To Create: 30 days of easy art prompts
As someone who is normally intimated by DIY projects, I found Schiller’s guide to creating an art space very straightforward, easy-going, intuitive, and encouraging. She advises flexibility and using available resources, making the most of the space and materials you already have on hand, while investing in quality products that will suit your child and will last. The guide includes a great mix of proven “best practices” with inspiration for simply doing what’s best for your family and existing space.
I ultimately love that The New Playroom isn’t just about transforming space, but transforming the way we interact with our children and encourage creativity. Even once her instructions for the project are complete, I appreciate how Schiller continues by advising readers on how to introduce children to the new space and engage with them there. Like the quote she shares from Albert Einstein: “Creativity is contagious. Pass it on.”
What about you: do you have a dedicated art space for your children? What do you think you could learn from a DIY Guide like The New Playroom?