An arts cupboard in your home

Laura's thoughts about keeping an arts cupboard in your home

Making it Stick

One of the things I have always admired about Scribble and Smudge’s approach is that Lesley can magic whole worlds into being from the most humble materials.

The art materials I have accumulated take up quite a portion of our home, cupboards and drawers barely close they are so stuffed full. I have indulged in trips to art and craft warehouses but I’ve not actually bought any for some time, my children, six and nine, have worked their way through most of the remnants I had left over from art collage 15 years ago. However, there is no storage solution that I can find to contain them (the art materials or the kids!). It’s my own fault, but to add to the chaos, my children also refuse to let me throw away packaging before I recycle it. At one stage we had an entire corner of our kitchen piled up with odd shaped boxes, pots and of course toilet roll inners.

So this got me thinking, if I had to narrow it down or choose just one thing, what would I keep? I looked at the now jumbled pots of pens, pencils and chalks I used to spend evenings putting back in order, yes sometimes I even sorted them into colours too but now it’s more of a throw and slam technique I use to shut the cupboard door. I noticed how the paper I try to keep flat has slipped down the back of the once carefully labeled drawers. I pondered, what is it that we use that we could not find in the outdoors because we can make marks with anything onto anything really. I realised that the most often used item in our collection had to be the things for sticking and fixing and I appear to 
be quite particular about have the right sticking solution for the job. We have every kind of tape, glue and fastener because in model making there is nothing more frustrating than when you can’t get Buzz Lightyear’s wings to stay stuck on and survive a test flight around the staircase.

So the item I wouldn’t want to be without has to be our glue gun. In just minutes cornflakes packets, egg boxes and the trays from inside chocolate boxes can become a 3D model of a city complete with solar power plant. You can get a cool glue gun and it has to be most most exciting find in recent years (the kids are nodding in agreement here). Your children do need to be supervised using it, the nozzle is still quite warm to touch, but sticking things always required at least one extra pair of hands and the glue gun will stick most things to each other instantly. Those googly eyes actually stayed on the eggs this Easter rather than popping off and staring up at me from the floor.
Model making
 has become more ambitious and results in fewer tears thanks to our glue gun.

I’m now working on the E17 Art Trail for June 2017 and would love to hear any ideas you or your children have for a children’s trail as part of this festival. Because of funding constraints think low tech sticky backed plastic but ambitious nonetheless! Please do email your suggestions to: