Binning Your Kids Artwork – Yay Or Nay?

A while back I was in my kitchen looking for my fridge, it took me a good five minutes to find him and when I finally did I was concerned to see he was sobbing his little heart out…



To cut a long story short he was fed up with being covered in bad drawings of Ninja Turtles, sunshines and stuff no one could could really make head nor tail of. He wanted at least some of his sleek shiny surface back and I had to respect that.

You see we are overrun with crappy artwork in our house, it’s EVERYWHERE and all I can do is hold my hands up and apologise to my fridge (and memo board and walls and shelves) – I’m so sorry guys!

So what to do with all this excess craft?

I had a quick Google and there are lots of options – take pictures and make them into a photo album, use them as wrapping paper, wallpaper your hallway with them, post them to your relatives (bit harsh) but whilst those ideas are lovely, you could also just do something radical like… chuck them?!

I’m going with the binning recycling option so If you are a piece of art that falls into any of the below categories then du du duuuuuuuuh: –

  • Already got it – I have like 300 drawings of Darth Vader and I need another one like I need a hole in the head. Originality please.
  • It’s just colouring in – It’s not even in the lines, zero effort made. Bin.
  • Offensive – contains graphic content such as body parts being hacked off with machetes.
  • Impractical – Oh lovely you made a bird feeder out of an orange juice carton! BUT WHAT IF IT RAINS?! Didn’t think about that did you?! I’m not being mean, just realistic. If you want to see mean try taking it on Dragon’s Den. Use suitable materials or… bin.
  • Ridiculous size – Anything that involves milk bottles, cereal boxes or cardboard tubes does not make my heart sing.



  • Poorly made – Why can’t kids get the ration of PVA glue right? On one side of the picture there’s a whole massive blob that serves no purpose and will never dry and on the other side there’s a microscopic smidgen under a fistful of sodding lentils. Learn to stick stuff down properly FFS.
  • Actually, anything with 3D stuff stuck on can f*ck off – Cotton wool and pasta based creations especially. Also dried up bits of leaves, feathers, pom poms, pipe cleaners, googly eyes… you get my drift. Once we got a collage of a beach made with real sand. I wanted to hurt somebody that day.
  • Glitter – it is the work of Satan and there is not place for that type of evil in my home.
  • Just really shit – I swear to god sometimes my youngest comes home with an A3 sheet of paper with like one black squiggle across it. The staff at nursery must stand around trying not to piss themselves at collection time – ‘He can’t wait to show you what he did today Mummy!’ (HA HARDY HA!) Not that I can really blame them it’s probably how I’d get my kicks if I were in their shoes. picasso

This is a recreation, the original is in the bin. Obviously.

I’m not a total bitch though. If anything comes home home with ‘Mummy’ written on it then my ego tells me to give it pride of place right in the middle of the fridge (even if it does flout at least 75% of the above rules).

Sorry fridge, I am trying… but look hand prints too!

*melts in puddle on floor*




P.S. I have a new book OUT NOW! You can nab it on Amazon here or in your lovely local bookshop :)


24 thoughts on “Binning Your Kids Artwork – Yay Or Nay?

  1. jessie

    To the bin just as fast as this blog post!

    (In reality, at the end of each month everything comes off of walls, fridge, ceiling, etc., and we start all over with a new month’s worth of creations.)

  2. Carie

    We glue the special and flat things into scrap books but not all of it – I have so many pieces of paper with just one line on them it’s untrue!!

  3. Pamela

    I will collect a bunch and place them on the floor, in a well lit room and I take a photo of each piece with my phone. That way, he can look at things months or years later. the really “good ones” I will print and put in one of 4 Ikea frames I have on the wall, and will alternate and update through the year. It keeps the paper clutter down (a bit). It never really ends…

  4. sarah

    Best thing my Mother In Law ever said to me was, “Well, you wouldn’t keep it if it was made of plasticine, would you? The pleasure is in the MAKING and DOING of it, not looking at it!”

  5. María

    So good! I just did a post on this topic last week! With options of what to do but certainly not so much creativity! I love your kids’ drawings and completely relate to your fridge and thoughts! Congrats!

  6. Lucy

    We have a ’24hr rule’. If it’s not been asked for in 24hrs it goes in the bin! We do have a ‘this week’s masterpiece’ peg for each and they get replaced only when a worthier piece appears!

  7. Ailsa

    Call me Granny! I am of the age when I am just meeting up with the treasure (baby/child artwork) for a second time; Secreted amongst my own bits and pieces in unopened drawers and attic boxes; lovingly saved in knicker drawers of ancient Aunts(Great and Great great!) and Great Grannies; Tucked behind photos in decrepit frames. I have even found some of my own artwork! So spread it around with a photograph of the artist …you know a real old fashioned pass it around sort of thing. It will make someone’s day…it may even be yours in 40 years time!

  8. Livia

    I throw a lot of things in the bin and I used to feel pretty guilty about it, until about now! I do keep a lot of drawings they make (3d is just impossible), but before I moved from overseas I would go through stuff saying: Am I going to take this to the other side of the world? So many things were gone and I don’t remember anything that I miss having, so it’s a good sign.

  9. Carry On Katy

    Ha!!! Cracking! This post came just in time as I binned all of my boy’s art work just yesterday. I was feeling guilty and then I thought of how great it is that I can recycle their work and it shall be turned into a nice clean piece of paper for another child to deface. No doubt that same bit of paper will end up hanging on your fridge.
    Its a great way for their artwork to get distributed across the country….otherwise it’s just hanging on my fridge and the world will never see it!

  10. Katie @mummydaddyme

    Hahaha I struggle with this. At first it was the most amazing thing ever, we adorned the kitchen cupboards with ‘beautiful’ masterpieces. But now we get SO much of it. And my children really aren’t the next (insert artist here I don’t know any) x

  11. Lori

    haha oh that old chestnut! Yep most get a 6 day fridge life then the best get’s selected for a folder while the rest is recycling a-go-go. if he gets particularly upset we do a mini ‘exhibition’ in the hall for an hour where we have party rings and a cuppa and he can show off to his hearts content and then it’s off to the recycling we go :)

  12. Catherine Wheeler

    Ladies you all need a Barney & Wilf print! We take your piles of artwork, scan, edit them and create a beautiful contemporary fine art collage. You can use between 24-88 ‘masterpieces’ We call it ‘guilt free decluttering’ :) Check out our website or FB page xx

  13. Maxine Henry

    I’m a sucker for artwork/crap with ‘mummy’ wrote on too. Anything is else is farmed out to family, he’s the first child everyone loves the crap, I mean artwork!

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  15. Sarah (Grenglish)

    I also struggle with this! We used to have an entire wall in the kitchen dedicated to ‘art’ but I made the mistake of sticking it all up with blue tack and slowly one by one, they all started to peel off leaving big dirty blue marks on the wall. In the end, I took them all down and they are currently being stored in an A3 plastic art bag in the loft. My mum said she did this with mine too but mice got to them all and made a nice nest out of them so the bin might be the better option. Have to be quite ruthless though and I’m not sure I have it in me…

  16. Jen

    My mom is visiting from out of town, so I’ll have to fact check with her tonight, but there’s a story from when I was small where mum threw away a bunch of the “artwork” created by my siblings and I. I don’t actually remember it happening and the story I’ve been told is foggy (memory has been damaged in the process of raising my own 3 darlings). Here’s my best crack at it: we were playing outside and tore open the trash (keep in mind I was so young I don’t remember this and know that I am the oldest child. Back in the day, this is how kids were raised; outdoors with limited supervision, improvising garbage into playthings). Naturally, we proceeded to bawl our eyes out and accuse mum of being awful for throwing away our “precious things”. Then, I guess, she called my grandmother to back her up, but I feel like what happened is that Gram took “our” side. Somehow I seem to “remember” this part, but probably that was just my interpretation. If Gram really did back us and not mum, my best guess is that it was payback for the fact that mum wasn’t really the perfect child she would have us believe.


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