Inexpensive Artwork for Childrens' Rooms

Some of the most beautiful art can be found in children's books. And what an inexpensive way to decorate?

Remember the curtains I bought at Ikea this weekend for my little guy's bedroom?? (below) Well, the first thing I thought of when I saw them was My Father's Dragon by Ruth Stiles Gannett (above)-- one of my favorite books as a kid. How fun would it be to use the book for art?

And also, how about The Saggy Baggy Elephant by K.B. Jackson with illustrations by Tenggren? (below)I think it would work perfectly.
The colors are vibrant and the story takes place in the jungle, which is exactly what the curtains remind me of.
Christian loves the book and loves naming all the different animals & making animal sounds. I think it would be so fun for them to be blown up & framed as a set of prints on the walls.
The crocodile (below) is one of my favorites. It's the illustration that made me want to start framing this book because it's just so vibrant & pretty.
How cute is Sookie the elephant's belly below??!!
Ok, I know I've shown an insane amount of this book by now, but just one more. (I can't help myself they're too cute!!! :) At this part Christian always points to the elephant in the center and says "baby" and then points to 2 big elephants and says "mommy - daddy."
And another of my favorite books is Murice Sendak's Where the Wild Things Are. The fabric below comes in a green & aqua colorway and when I saw it I immediately thought of Where the Wild Things Are. (I wish I had an image of the fabric in the right color but hopefully you see the connection anyway.)

I LOVE LOVE LOVE this book. The images are beautiful and the story's great.

When I was little, the library we went to had a big Max doll (wolf suit and everything) that came with the book when you checked it out. He was probably as big as me and it was awesome. Christian has an old furry snow suit that looks like Max's wolf suit and he sometimes puts it on and runs around growling.

The illustrations are softer & I think they almost deserve a room of their own. My original idea was to have Christian's new room be "where the wild things are" with letters spelling "WILD THING" above the bed, but then I found the really cheap Ikea curtains. Maybe Baby 2 will get to be the WILD THING??? (The Napping House is also a contender.)

We'll see... That fabric is much more expensive so... Anyway, there are so many beautiful children's books out there!! It's a really inexpensive way to decorate and kids will love it. (and you will too!!) Can't wait to show you finished pictures. Christian is getting his "big boy bed" soon so it'll be shortly!!! What are some of your favorite illustrated children's books?? Do you have any book artwork on your walls?


Ann-Michelle said...

I just hung pictures from a book called "Zen Shorts" in my sons room. They are prettiest watercolors of a giant panda. In one picture he is up in a tree with a paper airplane. The other he is sharing Japanese tea with the little boy in the story. The pictures are 11"x11", so they fit nicely in Ikea square frames. So cute.

I also wanted to hang some pictures from a copy of Curious George that belonged to my husband and is falling apart. I have to find the right frames.

I love the fabrics you paired with these stories. They are both favorites of mine as well.

Tracy @ comfortandluxury said...

Perfect, Lauren!
I'm not familiar with the first book, but the other two... of course! Those Tenggren illustrations are so fantastic... I'm not sure how many Tenggren-illustrated books my daughter had, but I know there were several and that I bought them primarily for the artwork. All I can say is they had better be in the attic somewhere... she's grown up now but we kept the best of her books... I might need to find these today! Thanks for the nice memory. Can't wait to see your lucky boy's room!

cd8718 said...

I really like your 2nd choice. I think you will able to use it for a longer time as he gets older. Good luck!

kahlanne said...

I love this idea. Even though I have never heard of the first two books, I like their images best. Great idea!

Eileen said...

I think they are both great choices, but I agree with you, I think the colors in the first are more vibrant and coordinate better with the material and pattern you got from Ikea.
Great job as usual! I can't wait to see you pull it all together!

Kathy said...

My two boys loved, loved, loved The Leaf Men, by William Joyce. And anything by Graeme Base. Beautiful illustrations, great stories. You've got a great idea!

lolly-jolly said...

Oh you are so right about the childrenbook's art! It always the most vivid and pretty and lovely and everything that involve cuteness :))
lovely blog!

Windlost said...

Great ideas Lauren. You know, I love children's books. I look at them all the time at my favorite bookstore. The illustrations and colours are so beautiful and fantastical it is almost a shame that we all don't get to see them!!

spark! (Ada-Marie) said...

Great idea! I have always wanted to do this in my 2 year old's playroom with Go Dog Go! by P.D. Eastmann - especially the scene with the dog party on top of the tree. Thanks for the cool post!

Maria Killam said...

What a fabulous idea! And the elephant in the water is the best one! You are so brilliant!

LindsB said...

Aw, what a sweet idea! I love the first book you posted and the ikea fabric- they are so perfect together. and Where the Wild Things are was one of my favorite books as a kid, so of couse it would be beautiful on the walls.

Ah, I like that book the caterpiller book, you know where it keeps eating and eating- I remember really colorful pictures in that book, but I could be wrong :) I think if I was doing my own nursery right now I would have to use Make Way for Duckings, because its based in Boston of course :)

Cristin said...

Great ideas Lauren!


Blushing hostess said...

A great idea I wish I had thought of before spending a fortune on Crgiville Fair prints!! Oh, well.. next time for sure!

Linda at Lime in the Coconut! said...

Great idea...and we loved all the books you named. Also Sendak's the Night Kitchen...and the grey lady and the strawberry snatcher. And of course chicka chicka boom boom...LOVE kids books so many fond memories! Bookstores always get in publivity posters for books that are always fun...when the book Olivia came out (10 years ago) we got one from our local bookstore for our Olivia!

Tiffany said...

Babar books make for great art! A lot of times the Babar books will even have a poster in them that you can unfold and frame. I think the old/original Mother Goose nursery rhyme books are also cute. "Frog and Toad" have cool pics, as well. Can't wait to see your completed project!

High-Heeled Foot in the door said...

Oh how cute. How did I miss this yesterday!

Love this idea. I constantly want to start riping pages out of books and plastering the walls with them.

I even blogged about a sweet little girls book that I would love to use in a nursery some day.

Brenda said...

What a fantastic idea to decorate a child's room. I love the first choice. The colors are bright and cheery and the animals are sweetly illustrated.

Michelle said...

Where the Wild Things are was one of my favorite books as a child and to read to my children. It's so true, the illustrations are amazing!! And I liked Curious George too :) just made me chuckle.

Best to you Lauren...have fun with Eddie and Jaithan...they seem like great company.