My dad flew a B-17 bomber during World War II. The plane took so much gunfire and flak the crew had to bail out before it crashed. Dad was captured by the Germans and spent 2 1/2 years in Stalag Luft III, home of the Great Escape.
My dad is deceased now, so my family made a shadow box honoring him. It includes the triangle folded American flag presented at his death to my mother, a photo of him in his flight uniform, his air medals, etc. It’s such a special box on my mother’s wall that all his descendants would love to inherit it.
Do you have some family heirlooms stored in a box out of sight or on a shelf somewhere gathering dust? Does your family know the background about that heirloom, who it belonged to, etc.?
Why not turn that heirloom into a treasured family history gift in a shadow box?
My neighbor, Daryl Bohnstedt, put together things that belonged to her great-grandmother. The photo at the right shows how she included a button hook, embroidery scissors, spectacles, a teaspoon, etc.
Shadow boxes are so easy to do!
Here’s how you can put together a shadow box:
- Gather objects and photos you have on hand.
- Try to group some that create a theme. For instance, the photo at the right is a wedding dress with a photo of the bridal couple.
- Decide what size shadow box you’ll need for that theme. You’ll need both the frame size, but also the depth of the objects.
- Head to your favorite craft or framing store and purchase the size box you’ll need. (You can find them online but time is running out to have one by Christmas).
- Line the box with some fabric or wallpaper.
- Arrange the items in the box.
- Use pins to attach or anchor the objects.
- Write a little history that you either display in the box or attach to the back of the box.
Here’s some online sites for shadow boxes:
- For a veteran check out these Freedom Display Cases. They are beautiful!
- Display Gifts.com has cases for collections: baseball, figurines, teaspoons, etc.
Want to make your own box? Here’s a link with instructions posted at EHow.com.
That was the easy part. The hard part will be deciding who you’ll give it to!
What things could you put in a shadow box?
Related posts: Family History Gifts: Something For Everyone!