A swatch of hospital receiving blanket, a tiny knit cap long since outgrown, photos of moments spent discovering Mommy and Daddy ... shadow boxes give these and all of baby's other treasured keepsakes a three-dimensional showcase. A glass front protects the contents from dust and damage, and you get a place for all those tiny trinkets that would otherwise get lost in a box. Here’s how to craft one of your own.
Plan Your Display
Planning out your design ahead of time can be the difference between an inspiring display and a cluttered box. Lay out your items on a table or atop a scrap piece of paper trimmed to the size of your final shadow box. This preparation also helps you determine what kind of embellishments you'll add to the finished piece. For example, if your aim is to mount a few black and white photos, a pastel pacifier and a high-resolution baby-themed print can add a pop of color as a backdrop.
Select Your Base
Your shadow box is really limited only by your creativity and the supplies you have on hand, so if you're feeling especially crafty, try building the box yourself using a spare wooden frame, a few pieces of scrap wood and a handful of finishing nails. Not feeling up to the task? Canon also sells ready-made shadow boxes that you can easily use for this project. Make sure to also grab a piece of foam board and cut it to size. This will help make mounting each baby-sized treasure a little easier. After all, while flat pieces are certainly easy to secure with glue or tape, you can poke holes through the foam board and secure your items with thin wire, eliminating the need to drill holes through the back of the finished piece.
Design the Display
Select a photo or a matching pattern online, choosing colors that coordinate with the items in the box or your home decor. A soft-colored dotted pattern, for example, might help tie in a pastel-themed nursery. Photos make great backgrounds, too. Have a favorite that you've posted to your Instagram or Facebook feed? You don't even need a computer to print it: just use the Canon Print app to send it to one of your PIXMA printers. You won't need many pages; simply print enough to cover the piece of foam board, and then glue the pages down to secure them.
Put It Together
Once the glue on your backdrop has dried, begin mounting your baby items using glue, tape, staples and wire. Secure photos, stickers, letters and other flat items first, then add three dimensional items on top of those. Use a nail or a large pin to poke holes in the foam board, then push the wire through the holes to form loops around your items in the front. Add a drop of glue to keep the item from shifting, then tighten the wire from the back and secure it with a few twists. When you're happy with the finished product, insert the foam board into the shadow box, close the frame up, and mount it to your baby's nursery wall.
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