Our refrigerator has become like many others, the centerpiece for our children’s art. I remember the excitement when a project of mine made the ‘fridge. It was the best kind of satisfaction any kid could want. Now, my children are doing the same thing: discovering the joy of finishing wonderful projects and displaying them properly on the front of the refrigerator and freezer. The only problem was we didn’t have enough magnets to properly display their artwork. Yes, we had some from local pizzerias or the one with the library schedule, but we needed something more kid related. That is when I got an idea.
How many stores have you been to that sell refrigerator magnets? Stores like Bed, Bath and Beyond, Target and many others sell trendy magnets for $4-$5 each. You can also get many exotic ones at airports and tourist hot spots. I have a nice collection from the different cities and countries I have gone to but they don’t have the ‘kid appeal’ to properly show off the special artwork.
My idea came to life as I walked through my local Michael’s Craft store. All over the store I saw adorable little things that I could imagine holding up my son’s artwork, but they weren’t magnets. Then it hit me; why can’t I make them into magnets?
Here are the supplies needed to make your own refrigerator magnets:
1 roll of sticky backed magnetic tape (1/2″ wide is preferred)
Adorable pre-painted die cuts and/or buttons (see above photo for examples)
The hardest part of this project is choosing your designs, die cuts or buttons, for your magnets. What I did was peruse the wide selection of pre-painted die cuts: sport themes, princess, travel, kid friendly, etc. I found an adorable set of luggage and cameras for my sister. She loves to travel, especially to Paris, so I thought these were perfect for her. My Mom loves to garden, so the dragonflies were perfect for her. My daughter picked a larger die cut, a pair of summer flip-flops roughly 3″ long, for her. My son loves to collect buttons, so for him, I went through my button collection at home and found a set of cute gumball machines. For myself, I also used a set of buttons: flower pots. (See above pictures for the finished products.) For the buttons, make sure you are using ones that have the holes through them and not the style with loop on the back.
The next step is to measure out your magnetic tape. There is no specific size you need to cut, so no ruler is necessary. Just size up your die cut, or button, and cut a piece of magnetic tape a slight bit smaller than the width of the die cut. The magnetic tape is very easy to trim, so even if your hands are not strong, this should be fairly easy for you. Just peel off the paper backing and apply.
Most of the die cuts only need one piece of magnetic tape, but if you chose a larger design, like the summer flip-flops, then it is best to apply two strips, one above the other, to make sure its strong enough to stay in place doesn’t slide down the front of the ‘fridge.
I prefer to use the roll of magnetic tape instead of the little magnetic circles for many reasons. The smaller, circle magnets are easy for little ones to get a hold of and swallow, and becomes a choking hazard. If your little one just happens to take a magnet from the fridge, the magnetic circles make it easy for them to grip and put in their mouth. The roll of magnetic tape is thinner than the circles allows you to cut larger pieces that are harder for then to pull off and swallow. Another reason I prefer the roll is that the circles are primarily one size, and the tape allows you to cut it to your preference.
Whichever magnet you prefer, it is easy to decorate your refrigerator with this project. It is quick and easy and is also nice to your wallet. My 9 year old son made some of these magnets as presents for his Grandmother and Aunt on Mother’s Day. They really liked the creativity of the gifts.
For a quick reference of scrapbooking ideas, try these: Create Your Own Personalized Baby Photo Scrapbook, or
Simple Ideas to Remember Your Little Ones.
When it is time to remove the old artwork and replace it with new ones, scrapbooking is a great way to preserve the art of their childhood.
Personal ideas and experience
Michaels Craft Store and Michaels.com