How to frame a dress?

Sueb20May 26, 2011

I guess what I need is a large shadow box frame. But I don't know where to find one. DD is adopted from Korea and has a Hanbok (traditional dress) that was given to her from her foster parents. It's probably the equivalent of about a size 5 child's dress. I'd like to frame it and display it in her room. Any ideas on how to do it?


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I don't know, but I think it is a lovely idea! I am sure your daughter will appreciate it and treasure it!

Perhaps a trophy type store could help?

    Bookmark   May 26, 2011 at 9:53AM
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We had a hockey jersey framed for our family room. It is a large shadow box with a hook on the inside; the jersey is on a hanger with some foam core inside to keep it stiff. Almost any frame store should have a similar jersey case.

Good luck!


    Bookmark   May 26, 2011 at 10:40AM
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I had my children's baptismal dress and hat framed. First of all, EXPENSIVE! It went into a deep shadow box and was hand-sewn onto a beautiful silk like (maybe silk) material. I had this done years ago at a specialty frame shop; it still looks perfect. I think that you want to make sure that whoever does it knows what they're doing; you don't want moisure, dirt or anything to "sneak" in there. It hangs in my dining room; someday I'll remove it for their children's baptism (hopefully!)

    Bookmark   May 26, 2011 at 11:23AM
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Sue, Here's a link to many sizes of shadowbox frames:

Here is a link that might be useful: Shadowboxes

    Bookmark   May 26, 2011 at 4:22PM
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beachlily z9a

Hobby Lobby has a lot of shadow frame boxes for jeseys--all sizes too.

    Bookmark   May 26, 2011 at 6:55PM
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I tried finding a picture that I saw on Houzz, but no luck. It was a dress on a hanger hung inside a frame that had no glass. It was very pretty but not sure if you need your dress behind glass or not. Good luck!

    Bookmark   May 26, 2011 at 7:53PM
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I have three baby dresses framed that were used for 1st birthday portraits - mine, DD2 and my sister's. My sister's dress was made by our paternal grandmother.

I purchased a low cut velvet to use on the back/sides. Picked out a deep frame (regular, not special shadowbox. Just has to be deep). They dry mount the fabric to mat board (cut to size). That is on the sides too. They "tacked" the dresses by sewing in a few places. These have been framed for 12 years.

Sorry, the color is way off on this picture but it's all I have on Photobucket:

Here is another piece up close, so you can see the sides better:

Here is an evening bag and instead of using fabric, I selected a silk covered mat board:

These have been framed about 15 years.

    Bookmark   May 26, 2011 at 8:41PM
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Our children's christening dress and bonnet are framed in a shadow box backed with a soft green suede. The dress is hanging on a child's padded silk hanger and this is all mounted somehow on the frame backing. I like the depth of almost two inches that the shadowbox style frame gives you, as you could also mount with it other artifacts such as a bracelet, necklace, silver rattle, etc. Ours has a handpainted porcelain cross mounted with the dress. But the photos of the regular frames above look good, too.

For something very large and ornate like I am envisioning you have, an acrylic or lucite shadow box would be perfect. These are custom made at a frame shop and they are completely see through, obviously, and do nothing to compete with the beauty and interest of the costume. This is what I would do.

    Bookmark   May 26, 2011 at 11:40PM
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allison, those baby dresses are so sweet. Love them! The problem is that the dress I have is so big. I need to get it out and measure it. I said it was about a size 5 but I think it's probably longer than that. I hope I can get away with one of the jersey-type frames I have seen online, or the shadowbox frames that dawnp shared, but I don't know if they'll be big enough. I may have to invest in professional framing.

kswl, I know what you mean about the lucite box idea -- I have seen that somewhere and that would probably be ideal.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2011 at 7:26AM
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Sueb, I was just picking up something from our local frame shop and there was the most interesting antique Chinese ancestor painting, framed in lucite and ready to be delivered to a condo in Atlanta. This piece was about 10 ft. x 6 ft., handpainted on cloth, had been preserved and mounted and was enclosed in a completely plain lucite box that did not in any way detract from the beautiful piece of artwork inside. I have seen other things framed this way, but it was the first time I have seen something with this many colors---and it was FABULOUS. The painting itself is fantastic, but the simple treatment that allowed the piece to be seen in all its glory really added to the presentation.

I hope you post a photo when you are finished!

    Bookmark   May 27, 2011 at 8:01AM
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My sister has an Asian piece in an over-sized lucite box like kswl is describing.

I've seen a christening gown done at the same local framing shop I use. It can be done, but depending on the frame you select, aren't inexpensive.

Hope you'll post pictures when you're done!

    Bookmark   May 27, 2011 at 3:07PM
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LOL, funny how your memory works. I hadn't really taken the dress out for a while... I just pulled it out of the closet and it is much smaller than I remembered! It would fit easily in a 24" x 36" frame, so that makes the search a lot easier.

DD's whole room is being transformed over the next 1-2 weeks, so I will definitely post pics after.

    Bookmark   May 27, 2011 at 4:05PM
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