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Awesome Ideas to Make Shadow Boxes

Shashank Nakate
There are a number of shadow box ideas that one can make use of to create beautiful pieces of artwork. A variety of themes can be used in creating these boxes. A shadow box also makes for a great gift item which could be presented to friends and family members on various occasions.
An enclosed case designed in a manner that protects decorative items, objects or pictures placed inside it, is termed as shadow box. Military retirement shadow boxes have been traditionally used as gifts for retired army personnel. These boxes contain medals and awards earned during their entire military career. There are many ideas you could use in making these boxes. Let us have a look at some of these.
One can come up with numerous ideas and use many different materials available at home. Old coins, photographs, letters, etc. and many such items come in handy for the decoration work.
The items collected at the time of traveling can also be used to decorate shadow boxes; post cards, match boxes, old maps, souvenirs, ticket stubs, etc. are the examples of these items. Sports enthusiasts can make use of balls, score cards, game tickets, brochures, trophies, ribbons, etc. Shadow boxes can be made from any suitable rectangular or square box.
However, cardboard boxes are an instant choice of any designer owing to the ease with which boxes can be handled and cut as per the needs of designers. It is necessary to protect these boxes from sunrays. The reason behind it is that rays of sun can cause the color of objects placed in shadow boxes to fade.

Seasonal Changes

Creating a shadow box with seasons as its theme is a good idea to make them attractive.
A shadow box with spring season as its theme should look colorful and bright. A variety of colors and their numerous shades can be incorporated in the process of designing. One can also use this opportunity to exhibit changes taking place in the environment when one season transitions into other.


Animal themes are very popular, especially among children. You can choose from different animals and birds for your shadow box designs.
Natural habitats of these animals and their hiding places like burrows or lairs can be depicted through box designs. Depiction of forest animals, sea life, desert animals, etc. can be effectively carried out through such projects.

Historical Events

Different historical events from the past are displayed through these shadow boxes.
Portraying the events which took place during the American Civil War is one such interesting idea to consider. You could think of incorporating many such historical events through shadow boxes. While preparing a shadow box with history as its theme, you would want to conduct thorough research on the given topic.

Vacation Remembrance

A shadow box with the vacation remembrance theme can be presented to friends whom we meet after a long time.
The different activities and events that take place during a vacation can be portrayed in a vacation remembrance shadow box. Making such a shadow box is a nice way of preserving memories. You can also use this idea to make a box depicting your family's Christmas vacation.


The shadow box with a graduation theme can be decorated with many different ideas. One can try to brush up memories of college days through this artwork. The convocation ceremony could be one such theme depicted in a shadow box.


Presenting a shadow box on the occasion of birthday is a nice idea, which also adds a personal touch to the gift.
The fact that we can customize the appearance of gifts being presented is fulfilling for both the receiver and giver. Designs and decorations should portray the celebrations of a birthday party. There is great scope for displaying your creativity through such themes.

Wedding Remembrance

Shadow boxes made in the form of wedding remembrances can be decorated with candles, ribbons, photographs, etc. Paintings, jewelry and coins can also be used for decoration. Details of wedding ceremonies can be portrayed in these boxes.
You can apply your creative ideas and designing skills in the preparation of shadow boxes. Capturing a particular event from a time frame and immortalizing it in a shadow box is a gratifying experience.