A House and Its People: A Multimedia Art Gift

Our finished card, starring KING KONG BUDGIE

This is a little something my kids and I made a couple of years ago. It’s still on display, that’s how much we love it. It’s a portrait of our house (and the people in it!), that was given as a gift to a special someone.

What you’ll need:
• One piece of 8 1/2 x 11″ card stock trimmed to fit an 8×10 frame
• Pencil
• Photos
• X-acto knife
• Sticky tape
• A ruler
• Pencil crayons
• An inexpensive frame (we got ours at Ikea)


1. Get one of the kids to draw a picture of your house on the card stock. For maximum impact, colour in the entire page: add sky, grass, sun—use your imagination!

2. Work with your child to measure a window opening for everyone in your family (you may have to improvise a little), working with your child to figure out how big the openings should be. We thought the windows should be a tiny bit bigger than the faces in the photo to give the effect of people peeking out. (I just realized that the photo I chose of myself is one in which my eyes follow you everywhere. But I guess those kind of eyes are typical for a mom, eh?)

Don’t forget to include your pets in your house portrait. They are part of the family too! (Although Pixie, our budgie, is a little out of scale in our house portrait above. She looks like she’s attacking the house.)

3. Use the X-acto knife to cut the windows. You can make a window that opens and closes (like a chocolate advent calendar) by cutting out only three sides of the square, but we were intent on framing ours we skipped this step.

4. Measure and cut your photos to fit. Working on the back side of your house, carefully tape each photo to the window holes (faces looking outward of course).

That’s it! You can frame your art like we did or leave it as is. Maybe you can make one for grandma and grandpa, with a portrait of their house, or like we did, for Dad on Father’s Day.

Andrea Tomkins is a mother of two imps, and wife of one. She’s a freelance writer who is often found with camera in hand or scribbling madly in her notebook. She is passionate about arts and culture, travel and healthy living, and gets an extra big thrill out of helping parents and kids discover all the hidden treasures Ottawa has to offer. You can follow her adventures on her blog, a peek inside the fishbowl, where she’s been writing about family life since 1999. She’ll be sharing a great new craft idea here at CF.ca every Friday.


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