Showcasing Your Favorite Items in Shadow Boxes

Published: 15th June 2012
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Pictures aren't the only things that are able to be displayed inside picture frames. You can proudly display other items of yours in picture frames, such as rare coins, colorful buttons, or even your favorite seashells. You may even display bigger items and souvenirs like a signed baseball, or a graduation cap or some other memorabilia.

There are few things that you should take into consideration whenever you are arranging your objects inside of the shadow box picture frame:

Measurements and Weight: When considering large or heavy items, you will need to determine if the item can be properly supported in the shadow box frame and whether the wall where it will be hanging can support the weight of the mounted frame. If your objects are quite sizeable then you will probably need some deep shadow box picture frames, and a couple very strong and heavy-duty hangers for the frame.

Make up and Condition: If an item is too unstable, meaning the material it is made up of may deteriorate over the years, you will want to take steps to keep it intact. Dried flowers, leaves, clay and even some metal and fabric materials fall into the unstable classification.

Whatever the dimensions, weight or composition of your item, you now need to decide how you will support your item firmly and attractively inside the frame.

Accurately Measure Your Item

Some of the measurements you will need to take are quite essential. One is to determine the length and width of your item to be exhibited and the other is to measure the item's thickness, or depth. Just how deep of a shadow box you are going to get will be determined by how thick the item you want to frame is. When you measure for thickness, be sure to allow for the glass and backing boards.

Layout of Your Display

You are now down to the most fun part of getting to use a shadow box picture frame. It is time to get inventive and determine the layout of your display. Before you attach anything in the shadow box, look over your items and get an idea of how you want your exhibit to appear. Move items around until you have them arranged the way that is most pleasing to you. Your arrangement may come naturally, or perhaps you would like a design that is arranged in order of date or size. The best thing you are able to do is to simply organize and rearrange until you find the layout that's right for you. One thing that is very important in making a nice design is balancing your colors and sizes well.

Spacing of items is essential to the overall eye catching appearance of your exhibit. If there is a certain item inside your shadow box that you want to place the focus on, then don't use too much space because that will overcome the object, but do not use too little either because then it will be too crowded. The same holds true for displaying a number of items. You don't want them to appear crowded but at the same time you want them close enough together so they are viewed as one cohesive display. Do not forget: trying, failing, then trying something new will ultimately give you the perfect arrangement.

When you are framing something in a shadow box picture frame you abide by basically the same suggestions as you would whenever framing a normal photo. Ensure that your frame will accentuate the style or color of the items you are putting in the shadow box. When there are several items in your frame, you can do one of two things with the color. Select a recurring color that will unify the items or select a neutral color that will go with each item.

After you hang up your shadow box, you may want to pick some more picture frames to display on the wall on both sides of the shadow box. If you hang up matching wood picture frames on each side of your wood shadow box (wood paired with wood or black with black) with a picture that goes with the theme inside the shadow box, you can easily create a nice arrangement.

Whatever method you choose for placing your items on display, the most important thing to keep in mind is that you should have fun doing it. Use your creativity and artistic skills to arrange your items into a memorable, attractive display to share with both friends and family.


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We at Your Picture Frames offer a lovely selection of beautiful shadow box picture frames in various sizes and materials. Take a look at our unique photo frames online or give us a call at 800-780-0699 so that we can help you find what you need!

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