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Project of the Month! Shadowbox Framing for War Memorabilia

Project of the month! Shadowbox Framing for War Memorabilia

We are excited to share our project that was just completed! Many of you have old memorabilia tucked away in storage. Well……have you ever thought about how cool it would be to frame it? We just completed a project for a client; showcasing her grandfather’s war memorabilia from WWII. She is going to be displaying the collection as a HUGE wall college in her family room. What a conversation topic for guests! Each piece was framed in coordinating framing (moulding by Larson Juhl) to give the grouping a cohesive design especially since each piece of the memorabilia itself is so dramatic. We thought we would share the photos to give some inspiration for you to pull those treasures out of hiding!  Contact us at (714)898-5097 if you have any memorabilia that you would like to display and would like some ideas! Let us know your comments as well on these pieces!

Japanese Currency

The first piece is a collection of Japanese Currency. This piece is framed, floated in what is called a glass trap. Each piece of currency is mounted with clear archival photo corners, and mounted between 2 pieces of acrylic. Spacers were used between the two acrylic pieces to create air for ventilation. Because this framing technique has no matboard backing, the objects appear floating and the wall color will show through the framing. Floating the currency also shows off the worn edges of the piece to shown their age of almost 75 years old!
WWII Japanese Currancy Glass Trap

Rifle with Bayonet Shadow Box

These next two pieces were 2 shadow boxes. One featured a Japanese Arisaka Type 99 rifle with bayonet and sheath and the other, a Japanese Samurai Sword Case. Both these pieces were tedious projects created with expert craftmanship. First a box had to be built and finely stained to match the frame. This was to add about 4″ of depth behind the frame moulding to hold the objects. The frame and acrylic face was hinged to the box to allow it to be opened. The client wanted to be able to take them out if they wanted to look at them closer. With that in mind, we mounted each piece with industrial magnets, adding wood pegs for additional balance and support. Hooks were added to give the rifle/bayonet extra support due to its heavy weight. All the client has to do is open the hinged face lid and left out each piece with ease. The backing behind each object was  a linen fabric wrapped mat board. The fabric is also carried up the sides for a complete look. Because each of theses piece was about 6 1/2 ft wide, we attached a Z-bar (similar to a french cleat)  to the back for proper support when hung on the wall.

Side View of Shadow Box

Inside of Rifle Shadowbox

Inside of Rifle Shadowbox

rifle Hook

Rifle Hook and Magnet

Rifle and Bayonet Holster

Rifle and Bayonet Sheath


Magnet and Support Post

Worn Leather of Sheath

Worn Leather of Bayonet Sheath

Rifle Shadowbox all Completed!

Completed Shadowbox w/Rifle
Completed Rifle Shadowbox

Japanese Sword with Scabbard

Samurai Sword Closeup
Sword Handle Closeup
Samurai Sword Handle Closeup
Sword Shadowbox

World War II Army Uniform Shadowboxes

The next two pieces of this project are a pair of shadow boxes featuring two army uniforms. Each uniform including the dog tags and coordinating hat had to be hand sewn to a matboard covered with linen fabric. Hand sewing garment memorabilia is ideal to make sure it is reversible if any changes to the framing is desired in the future. These pieces were pretty large at about 36″ x 36″ outside dimension.
WWII Army Uniform/Hat/Tie
WWII Uniform w/ hat and dog tags

WWII Photos and Army Brochure Framing

The last two photos are of the framing of some misc. photos and an Army instruction brochure. Both were framed to complete the larger pieces by using the same materials. They were framed with acid free materials as well as linen wrapped matboards.
WWII Photo Collage
WWII Doughboy Instructional Brochure
  1. I would like to order a shadow box for a riffle one where i could open it up
    do you make sizes like 40 long 10 deep

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Fine Arts Framing

13812 Newport Ave. #104
Tustin, CA 92780
Phone: (714) 898-5097

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