PictureStanley and Stanley Herbert Daines during WWI.
My husband’s family has a long line of military service. As a surprise Christmas present, I created a shadow box
commemorating his grandfather, Stanley Herbert Daines. 

A shadow box is an opportunity to tell a
bit of a story about someone’s life. It’s also one way to display memorabilia  that isn’t just photographs. I still recall the images of ancestors from around the house when I was growing up but it didn’t engage me or give me any ideas about the person in the photo.

5 Tips for creating your shadow box
  1. Before you purchase the shadow box, gather everything together and try different layouts on your table. This way you'll get a good idea of the dimensions that will best suit your project.
  2. Decide how you will set the items into your display. Consider glue, thread, adhesive tape, or dimensional adhesives (3-D effect). Whichever you choose, use archival quality materials so the items won't get damaged. In the case of photographs, you could use a copy.
  3. Set items at different depths within the shadow box add to add more visual interest. If some items have a backing (pins or buttons, for example), insert Styrofoam behind the fabric or paper. Make small slices in the fabric to allow the backing through so the fabric doesn't pull.
  4.  Before you put it all together on the back board, MAKE SURE it is facing up! I made this mistake and it was a pain to re-set everything.
  5. Carefully clean the frame and glass to remove dust and debris and make sure it's dry before you put it all together.

In the shadow box I created, I used a heavy fabric over slim Styrofoam and a combination of dimensional adhesives, thread and glue to hold everything together. The photo is set onto contrasting colours of card stock paper that is raised from the background fabric using dimensional adhesive; the rope is threaded on in a co-ordinating colour of thread and I sewed all of the buttons on to the fabric, too, as well as setting them into the Styrofoam. The pins were probably the easiest because they got pinned to the fabric. That said, it was a bit fussy to get everything aligned!
This was my first layout attempt with one fabric option. There is a spot where I was going to include the details of his military career.
A sample. This is from Pinterest, citing Bradley's Art and
Finished project on a shelf in my husband's home office. His family's military service is something he's proud of.
Another sample. This is also from Pinterest, citing
Military Collection
8/17/2013 12:19:37 am

Welcome to Geneabloggers!!

8/17/2013 01:57:31 am

Welcome to GeneaBloggers!

I love your military shadow box! I'm looking for ideas to bring to my next family reunion to share. Your blog looks like a good place to get some ideas.

8/17/2013 07:46:11 am

Welcome to Geneabloggers. You have some great ideas on here so you can count on me being back.

9/12/2013 07:15:13 am

Your shadowbox is great but I would have liked a little more information on how you can have glass if it is dimensional. Love the idea though.

10/21/2013 04:48:34 am

Bertiesmum, You buy a "shadowbox frame" which has some depth between the backing and the glass, usually around a half-inch. You can buy shadowbox frames at craft stores, frame shops, and on-line retailers.


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