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What is a Shadow Box Frame?

July 05, 2022

What is a Shadow Box Frame?

A shadow box frame is one of the best solutions for displaying three-dimensional items in an attractive way. Whether you're putting together a wedding photo display, wanting to protect your sports memorabilia or need the perfect display case for a piece of art, shadow box framing could be the perfect option.

Below, we explain what is a shadow box frame, how to use it and whether it's the right choice for you.

shadow box frame sports memorabilia

What is a shadow box frame?

A shadow box frame is a type of display case that has a fixed space between the glass and the artwork to create a sense of depth. Shadow box frames can be used for traditional flat artworks as well as three-dimensional items such as memorabilia and textured works of art.

The shadow box is made with a hollowed out frame, so when you place your artwork against the back of the frame it creates a shadow effect, hence the name. This can be a classy and artistic way to display all kinds of precious memories, DIY crafts, high quality collectables and more. Whatever depth or width your items are, a custom frame will ensure they're displayed in the perfect way.

What is the difference between a shadow box and a picture frame?

A traditional picture frame is ideal for displaying flat artworks like paintings, digital prints and photographs. The artwork is placed under the glass, usually with a mat board in-between to provide a border. While there's a wide range of width and height options for traditional picture frames, you're limited when it comes to framing bulky or three-dimensional items.

That's where the shadow box comes in. While you can, of course, frame a flat print inside a shadow box, you can also include three-dimensional objects that need more space. Everything from buttons, shells and floral arrangements to footy jerseys, cricket bats, war medals can be housed in a shadow box. You can even mix and match items of different sizes to create an eye-catching shadow box display.

What is a shadow box frame used for?

Shadow box frames are commonly used to frame military medals, sports memorabilia and family heirlooms. But there's really no limit when it comes to framing with a shadowbox. If you've got something you want framed, simply bring it into our studio and we'll show you what's possible.

Here are some ways our customers have used shadow box frames:

  • Military medals and memorabilia
  • Sports memorabilia
  • Travel souvenirs
  • Bridal keepsakes such as preserved wedding flowers
  • 3D artworks such as paper sculptures
  • Shells, nuts, butterflies and other natural collections
  • Keepsakes of your children such as baby shoes or moulds of their feet
  • Textiles such as embroidery artworks, flags, weavings and macrame
  • Puzzles
  • 3D wooden letters or words

Is a shadow box frame the right choice for me?

If you've got a three dimensional item you want to display or protect, a shadow box could be the perfect solution. Leaving your precious items uncovered can lead to damage over time from dust, dirt and sunlight. A shadow box will ensure your items are kept safe and secure while still letting you display them proudly.

A shadow box photo frame can also be a good choice if you want to achieve the shadow effect with flat artworks or prints. It's a tasteful way to add depth and visual interest to a statement piece that you love.

How do you display items in a shadow box?

If you're looking to display photos or artworks in a unique way, a shadow box can give you more flexibility than a traditional wall frame. For example, a shadow box will allow you to display your wedding flowers along with your wedding photos in the one frame. If you're looking for a way to celebrate your furry friend, a shadow box allows you to create a pet memorial frame that includes a photo as well as your pet's collar and favourite toy.

wedding picture frame perth

Shadow box picture frames look great on their own as a statement piece, but they're also excellent additions to a gallery wall. For more inspiration, check out these ways you can use framed art to transform a space in your home.

Is it worth getting custom shadow box framing?

Some stores sell premade shadow boxes. However, there are a number of drawbacks to purchasing pre-made frames. You usually sacrifice quality, appearance and durability. If you're framing a valuable artwork or a sentimental item, we highly recommend getting a custom shadow box frame.

Reasons to choose a custom option include:

  • The perfect fit – create a frame that's exactly the right dimensions, materials and style for your taste. It's the best way to ensure your display gets all the attention it deserves.
  • Better quality – our custom frames are made with the highest quality materials and techniques. We don't cut corners and we ensure they're made to last.
  • High level of protection – why entrust your precious items with a poor quality frame? Our custom frames are designed to keep your items safe from dust, dirt and grime. You can also choose UV protective glass for that extra peace of mind.
  • Competitive pricing – a custom frame might not be as expensive as you think. We make all our frames on site in our studio which means we can offer our customers competitive factory direct pricing. Ask us for a quote today.

Need more convincing? Read our article on why having a custom frame is so important.

Need help choosing the right frame for your item?

Bring your item into Portfolio Picture Framers and our friendly team can help you find the perfect solution for your needs. We specialise in custom picture frames, shadow box frames, canvas stretching and more. Only using the highest quality materials and techniques, we'll make sure you get a result that you're proud to display.

Call us on (08) 9330 5884 or come and say hi at our Myaree showroom.

Send us a message!