A Shadow Box for the Ages.

January 29, 2013

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Befores, afters, mood boards, plans, failures, wins. We’ve done a lot of projects, and they’re all here. 

We have a long-standing relationship with DIY, and love rolling our sleeves up and making it happen. 

Even when you don’t want to rip down a wall, you can make that space in your home better. Right now.

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Greta’s room is packing a lot of neutrals (or was)–but the art opposite the butterfly wall will hopefully balance that with lots of little punches of color.  And then there is the closet color that you all voted on, which is currently leaning toward a bold pink–a nice big splash of color that will coordinate so well with the first piece “art” on Greta’s wall.

Greta was blessed in our church wearing this little, white, vintage onesie when she was just a few weeks old.  I found it again a few weeks ago while I was attempting to sort through all of her old clothes and clear some space out and I thought, “Ahh! Frameable! For her room!!”  There might have been some tears mixed in there.  Moving on.

The next day I gathered some supplies for the project.  I have seen a lot of framed clothing pinned in place, but I really wanted to use a gold hanger to coordinate with other art we’re using–plus, cute! I ended up just using plastic hanger from Greta’s closet and some gold spray paint from Michaels.  I also got 3/4 yard of bright pink, cheap fabric and a 16×20 shadow box from Hobby Lobby that was on clearance for $16.99.

The back of the box had, like, 15 screws (!!) that I unscrewed so I could “reupholster” the gray with a bright, bold pink.

I was fully expecting to take out the gray fabric and just place the pink fabric in (maybe staple it on the back?) but the gray fabric was glued on the the backing so I rolled with it.  I just lightly sprayed the gray fabric with adhesive and smoothed the pink right over top.

While spray-painting the hanger, I also painted a little finishing nail gold and hammered it in place.  It’s a good idea to put a thick piece of fabric or some sort of buffer over your freshly painted nail while hammering, so you don’t scratch off the paint.  ;)

The finished product is something sentimental, girly, colorful and pretty cute.  Greta loves pointing to it and saying, “Little baby goes to church!”  I don’t quite know if she understands she was that little baby, but she will one day.

Have you ever cried over baby clothes and then framed them?  Ha! Jenny recently did a round up of not just framed baby clothing, but also some great vintage pieces–including bathing suits!  Or, you could always frame barbie clothes. Surprisingly chic!

Update: Here’s a photo of our girl at 9 or 10 weeks old on her blessing day in the outfit now framed above. :)  

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What do you think?

  1. Mimi says:

    Hi, I was wondering if: how is this project still holding up? Has the dress faded or turned yellow? Did your other daughters also wear this same blessing onesie ? Are you hanging this up somewhere in the new house? I have ysa age children now and I wish to do this for their blessing outfits but I wonder if I should have special glass from Michaels to prevent fading as I love to have natural light flooding the rooms. Look forward to your reply.

  2. Karen says:

    Love this and love your gold comparison spray blog. Just found you adorable guys. Thanks

  3. Anonymous says:

    Great idea! I have my son’s christening dress (handmade and hand smocked) and I think I’m going to frame it the way you did Greta’s. Thanks.
    However, I have to say that I have _always_ hung my clothes on hangers the way you have that one. That’s the way my mother hung my clothes. The other way looks wrong to me and I am always hanging them up wrong in the store. So leave it that way if you like it.

  4. Brad says:

    This is beyond adorable. I showed it to my wife and she immediately started running through old baby outfits to find the right one worth framing… which may mean our daughter’s entire 3-6 month wardrobe could end up on a gallery wall. Thanks for sharing!

  5. Becky says:

    LOVE THIS! I’m gonna do it!

  6. Anonymous says:

    Did the fabric smooth out completely? I tried this and the fabric had some air bubbles under it in places. I noticed in one f your pictures you had some too but then didn’t see it in the next. Did the dress just cover any imperfections in the fabric or were you abe to smooth it out somehow? If so how?

    • The photo with the spray adhesive was taken prior to adhering the fabric to the board–so what you see is just the fabric laying on top. I found it smoothed out wonderfully with the adhesive. I rolled my fabric, sprayed the adhesive and then slowly unrolled the pink onto the backing, smoothing it with one hand as I went.

  7. The pink is so unexpected and I love it!! I cry every time I have to pack away some of my baby’s clothes…. don’t feel bad!

  8. jennyl says:

    Hey guys! Please help me out and do this quick student survey on consumer behavior!

  9. Kim says:

    So cute, love how you painted the nail and the hanger gold.

  10. Love the pop of pink! It’s so fun and I love the sentimental touch the baptism dress brings :)

  11. Love the modern take on a classic dress. So sweet, but cool at the same time!

  12. OK, so as a former clothing store employee and kind of OCD person, that makes me twitchy because the hanger is facing the WRONG WAY. They should always look like a “?”. No excuses!

    But otherwise, it’s adorable :)

  13. Courtenay says:

    I love this idea and really adore the fresh pop of colour behind it! I spray painted all the hangers for my daughter’s closet gold, so I really love this project! :)

  14. I love this idea. That is such a beautiful onesie, too. I love meaningful art. Can’t wait to see the room keep developing and seeing all these wonderful pieces come together.

  15. Whitney says:

    So adorable! I adore the color scheme going on – the neutral, warm wall, black, white, pink, and gold? Yum. :D

  16. Rebecca W. says:

    Too cute! My grandma had a baby quilt framed with her’s and her 3 daughters’ baptism dresses all framed together. Large but beautiful. They included a picture of the girls in the dresses too, just a thought for more sentimental value!

  17. I loved that post Jenny from LGN did and yours looks fantastic!

  18. I love the pop of pink! And what a cute dress. My mom dug out my baby baptism dress and it’s like 3 feet long! So fancy, but not as nice for framing…

    • Hahaha. Yes! Many are. In fact, when we were looking for Greta’s, that’s what we had in mind–and then we found this little vintage onesie and fell in love with its simplicity so we went with it. Luckily now, it fits in this box! Hahaha

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