We started with a very basic photo holder idea. We took a block of wood and cut a few cubes out of it. My husband drilled a hole into each cube. We combined two large paperclips and straightened them; after inserting the single piece through the hole, my husband soldered the bottom of the paperclip to the base of the block. We then formed some curly shapes with the top of the paperclip and voila—an instant photo holder.
Unfortunately, it wasn’t very stable. Though the holder is still useful, it has to be either glued or wedged down—not a very versatile picture holder! So we took the idea to a heavier level—literally—and went out for some river rocks from our garden. We then simply wrapped the combined paperclips around the rock and formed the same concept, giving it a very pretty, natural look. (If you want a bolder look, feel free to paint your rocks, have your child put his or her fingerprints on them, glue on googly eyes, etc. You might also want to heat the rock and melt crayons on it before adding the photo elements, giving it a very unique look.)
Next, we made clay necklaces. We started with an idea I’d heard about that included getting our daughter’s thumb print on a piece of clay, baking it, and putting it on a cord. We did that, but we also went a step further to make another necklace.
We made the basic oval shape, only with a hollow center instead of a filled one. (You can do this by rolling the clay like a “snake” and fusing the ends together.) Then we baked it. When it was dry, we glued a small photo of my daughter inside with super glue around the edges and made a very simple “open” locket that she, in particular, loved very much.
When it comes to photo frames and holders, however, you are only limited by your imagination! From clothes pins to toothpicks, popsicle sticks to construction paper, you can make anything you put your mind to! One of our favorites is a simple popsicle stick frame we created one summer following a beach visit. We simply glued on some of the small seashells my daughter had collected for a personalized touch.