I like artwork, but I have to say I don’t often like something enough to want to pay hundreds or thousands of dollars for it. I love and appreciate good art, so I’ve found some ways to have great art at little cost.
1. Notecards. I have several framed notecards that I’ve purchased while traveling. Great notecards are often found in gift shops at museums or artisan shops. This lovely flowered notecard was purchased at the gift shop at Glastonbury Abbey and it coordinates beautifully with a flowered border in our bedroom. I love it because it makes me think of English summer
gardens. The round mandala is from a the Kilkenny Shop in Kilkenny Ireland where I bought some beautiful artisan glass and couldn’t resist a 4-pack of this card for about $6. It is the perfect color for my office and I love the Celtic design. A lovely notecard I bought in Scotland perfectly depicts the Highlands better than any piece of art I saw while there.
2. Make Your Own Art. I’ve done this in my office by framing the bookmarks I buy while traveling. They provide beautiful and eclectic designs. I took a photo of my son snorkeling in Hawaii and
wrote one of my favorite quotes on it and framed it. It’s more personal and much cheaper than the inspirational quote artwork you can buy. We framed our wedding invitation and it is a meaningful and special treasure that hangs in our home.
3. Calendars. I am a huge fan of Deborah DeWit Marchant, who does lots of paintings that speak to readers, showing books or people reading. I would buy all of her work if I could afford it. Instead, whenever she produces a wall calendar (retailing for under $20), I buy it and end up framing several of the calendar pages.
4. Think Outside the Box. There are lots of beautiful things
you can buy that are artistic and fascinating, without being actual art on a canvas. I love this sailor’s knot trivet I bought in Maine, which hangs on the wall in our hallway and reminds me of Maine. Pottery can also make great artwork. A bowl from Puerto Rico and a platter from Edinburgh hang on the walls of our kitchen. A shell lei hangs in my office from Hawaii. A glass tile I bought at the Grand Canyon for $5 brightens our entryway.
5. Photos. Frame your own photos and hang them on the walls. They can be family photos, landscapes, or experimental art. I have a whole wall of family photos on our stairway. For more impact, mat them.
6. Cheap Prints. When traveling, I always look at the $3 prints sold on the spinning racks on the sidewalk from tacky gift shops. These pieces of art may be inexpensive, but they can be beautiful, particularly if you frame them nicely. Our print of the Eiffel Tower came from a souvenir store in Montmartre and was about 4 Euro. Once we framed it, it looked expensive.
7. Maps. Maps are beautiful pieces of art. Frame a map of where you went on your honeymoon or of your dream destination. I have a map of the area of Maine where I summered as a child and where we went on our honeymoon hanging in my office.
8. Children’s Artwork. For many years, a fingerpainting my son made hung framed in our family room. It looked like a piece of abstract art. I still have my children’s handprints hanging in my office. Choose your
favorites created by the child in your life and frame them.
I like artwork, but I have to say I don’t often like something enough to want to pay hundreds or thousands of dollars for it. I love and appreciate good art, so I’ve found some ways to have great art at little cost. 1. Notecards. I have several framed notecards that I’ve purchased while traveling. … Read more