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How to Make a Keepsake Display Box


Sunday, August 29th, 2010

So your wedding has come and gone and all the agonizing details you organized paid off to make your day special!  But now, what do you have to show for all the details besides some pictures from the photographer?

Why not gather the treasured mementos from your ceremony and reception and place them into a keepsake shadow box?  Enjoy them everyday as a constant reminder of your wonderful and beautiful wedding.

Supplies – Shadow box (available at your local craft store in all sizes to best fit your treasures), a collection of memorabilia and trinkets from your wedding, straight-pins and adhesives for mounting you items, background paper of fabric in the colors of your choice (maybe you would like to match the colors of your wedding or coordinate with the colors of the room which the shadow box will be on display), and you will need various embellishments such as ribbon, glitter, buttons, matchbooks or flowers (dried or silk only).

Ready?  Let’s get started…

1) Select your keepsake items.  Suggestions – wedding invite, favors, bride’s garter, fabric from the bride’s gown, ribbon from the groom’s boutonniere or the bride’s flowers, place card from the reception, stamps or tickets from honeymoon, feathers, and photos of you and your groom.

2)  Remove the back panel from the shadow box to cover it for your background.  The panel can be altered with paper, paint or fabric.  I used a vintage-inspired scrapbook paper.  (Suggestion – check out Graphic 45 on the web – http://www.g45papers.com/)

3)  Attach your keepsake items to the back panel.  How do you attach?  It depends on the item and how you would like to display them.

Straight-pins – are excellent for items which you like to display temporarily in the box or items which you do not want to use adhesives on.

Double-sided foam – the foam is more adhesive than double-stick tape.  The foam creates a permanent bond with paper items, lightweight items, fragile items or items such as lace or flowers.

Liquid adhesives (i.e. glue, rubber cement, or epoxy) – they create a permanent bond and need some time to set / dry.

Museum putty – this is perfect for holding glass or ceramic pieces in place.

4) Create dimension inside the box.  Remember to take advantage of the box’s three-dimensional space.  Create layers by placing smaller items on top of larger ones.  Use the inside rims by hanging items from the top inside ledge of the box and place items on the inner bottom ledge.  Consider the edges as the ‘ceiling’ and the ‘floor’ of your box space.

5) Be sure to add some embellishment to the keepsakes on display.  Add ribbon, lace, rhinestones, glitter, buttons and fabric add extra pizazz and texture.

6) Once you have your times in place, double check the payout for any missing items, or items which need extra support or adhesives.  Before you replace your panel back, check for lint or dust which you don’t want displayed.  When everything is Okay, replace the back panel and enjoy your beautiful display of your wedding treasures!  (see some of these finished products for inspiration -http://custom.g45papers.com/idea-details.php?ProID=895 ,and check out http://www.customshadowbox.com/gallery.htm)

Any theme and style works for your shadow box.  Try to keep them out of direct sunlight since the sun will fade your items and also deterirate the adhesives and fragile items.

Enjoy your beautiful reminder of your wonderful wedding every day!

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