A Trio of Burlap and Shell Beach Shadowboxes with Tutorial

We found a ton of shells this summer, so I’m trying to find creative ways to display them. I decided to make these three little shadowboxes for my bathroom. I actually bought the sand dollar and starfish, but found the shell. I was mad because we found several sand dollars (already dead) after I bought this big one. Oh well. I’m sure I will find a home for them too.
I bought three of these 5×7 shadow boxes at Hobby Lobby for $4.50 a piece. They were on sale and cheaper than their friends because they are a weird grey color.
I taped the glass to avoid getting paint on it, and then painted all the wood with antique white paint and a foam brush. I let it dry, and then sanded it to give it a worn, beachy feel.
I cut each piece of burlap to cover the backing from the frames. I tried using Gorilla Glue first, but it didn’t hold. I definitely Gorilla glued my fingers nicely. My friend Whitney pointed out that I should use wax paper next time so I wouldn’t get glue on my fingers. She is a genius. I glued the burlap down with hardcore craft glue, and pressed it with the wax paper. You have to be careful with glue placement, because it may still show once dried.
Once the glue dried, I trimmed the burlap to fit exactly inside the frame. My frames wouldn’t allow me to wrap it and staple on the back, as I had originally planned. Then I centered each shell and glued it down, pressing for 30 seconds.
Then I put the finished product into their frames and hung them in my bathroom. I love the rustic, beachy simplicity. This project was a little time consuming, but worth the effort.

If you don’t have time to make your own, I’m selling these on Etsy, made with found shells only, for $20. Check out my Etsy site on the sidebar.

Don’t forget to link up to the Beach Week party!

I’m linking to some great parties. Check them out here.

10 Comments on A Trio of Burlap and Shell Beach Shadowboxes with Tutorial

  1. Momma J
    August 17, 2010 at 4:14 pm (5 years ago)

    That’s so neat! I am completely missing the craft gene in my body, so it’s nice to see others that can do those things!

  2. gringationcancun
    August 17, 2010 at 6:16 pm (5 years ago)

    Love them! I have a whole bag full of shells at my house now, and I really like this idea for our bathrooms!

    Maybe with a navy blue striped background for a crisp, nautical theme?

    I’m excited now! Wooo! Thanks :)

  3. FairfieldHouse
    August 17, 2010 at 9:52 pm (5 years ago)


    These are beautiful! I hope you sell some at the virtual yard sale. Don’t forget to link back.

    Curious what your party will hold tomorrow.


  4. ★All Thingz Related★
    August 18, 2010 at 12:54 am (5 years ago)

    They are so simple and elegant, I love them! Thanks so much for sharing your project with us at Anything Related!

  5. Anji*
    August 19, 2010 at 9:49 am (5 years ago)

    These shadowboxes are really lovely Becca.. I have a project with some frames which I want to convert to shadowboxes with beachy things in.. You may have just given me the motivation to get on with it!

  6. Ana
    August 19, 2010 at 8:49 pm (5 years ago)

    These are beautiful! I am your new follower :)

  7. Heather Bredimus
    August 22, 2010 at 3:56 am (5 years ago)

    Hi Becca! I found your site off of Today’s Creative Blog! I love your craft! You are so talented! I just signed up to be your newest follower! Woo hoo! I hope you stop by my new blog. I just started it 2 months ago and would love new friends! Please come see me at http://www.modernfamilymagazine.com



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