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Do you have drawers full of old birthday cards, little notes from friends, and all that stuff that we just cannot make ourselves throw away? Are you baffled by not knowing what to do with these items? Many of us need to take time and go through all these extra things we hold onto and be willing to get rid of stuff (junk, to others). (If you are having trouble letting go, just watch the TV show Hoarders for inspiration!) It is so easy to fall into the thought pattern that we may want to see who sent us a birthday card ten years ago. So we shove mementos it into a drawer and completely forget it. We know that there is a wonderful sentiment written in the card, but WHY keep those cards that a person simply signed and sent?!

Once you narrow down the stack of items you what to keep, what does one do with the important items? Letters from a late parent or grandparent, a note that inspires you, words of encouragement from a friend. There is no point in hiding them away in forgotten places. It is time to get these letters/notes out, dust them off,  and display for your own daily inspiration and encouragement!

Choose a Room

There are many options to display items. Many people would first think of a bulletin board or fridge, but why not make the pieces into art? Try to pick a room where the items you choose will be mainly seen by you: an office, bedroom, personal bathroom. These are the places that you visit often and where you will be uplifted the most!

Pick a Frame

In today’s market, it is easy to find reasonably-priced frames that are matted and ready to hang. Target has terrific frame options that are high in quality; they are classically-styled and have a wide range of sizes. West Elm (a retailer specializing in affordable design using natural, modern materials) also has spectacular framing options. Look around and see what fits your home decor. Most importantly, choose something you like!

Expert Tip: Frames are easy to change, so if you are indecisive, choose several frames and change the items every few months.

Shown are several birthday cards my Great-Grandma hand painted and sent. In addition, my collection contains a note written by my father.

Show Some Edge

When framing, I usually hide the edges of my prints behind a mat to present a clean, classic look. When it comes to cards and notes, I do not always like to hide the edges behind the mat. Instead, pick a mat that is too small so the item “floats” in front. This shows what the item was and gives a more laid-back feel.

When assembling your new artwork, PLEASE do not use harsh glue to keep your mementos in place. I like to use acid free glue dots. They will not yellow your memento over time. In addition, they stay soft so you can easily remove them from your item without harm!

Put Them on Display

Arrange the completed frames on a wall or prop them on your desk and night stand. The more visible the artwork, the more inspiration you may draw. Additionally, these framed pieces can be quite the conversation-starter when guests are visiting!

This is a clean and simple way to keep those items that are important to you without having endless piles of items you may never look at again! Start today – open your desk drawer and see what you find!

Happy framing!