Quick Bathroom Update: Fabric Shadow Boxes

It’s been a while since I’ve made any decor updates to our current full bathroom (which we plan to turn into the master bath once our new guest bath is finished – I owe an update on that) so when I was out and about looking for capiz shells for this pendant project I also picked up a few sand dollars and white starfish to add to my current collection.

I thought it would be kind of cool to frame the shells for the bathroom since it doesn’t really have any art going on. We haven’t put much effort into it (other than painting it, DIYing a striped shower curtain and buying a few accessories – more about the $100 makeover here) because we know it will be demoed and gone in the next year.

But I’m off track… okay, back to the shadow boxes! Shadow boxes are an easy way to frame goodies and treasures to create instant art. It’s easy to get carried away, but if you stick with one object (or multiples of the same object or same colored objects) it can look modern and fun.

This bathroom is currently the house’s only full bath (there’s a little half bath in our room but it’s about the size of a 4×4′ box so it’s rarely used). Ignore the yellowing switch plate! It’s little updates like these that we haven’t put any time into because it always feels like we’re oh-so-close to redoing the whole space. Plus, I searched and searched for a two-switch-plus-an-outlet light cover and these are definitely not to code any more. So no new outlet cover for us. :)


Fabric Shadow Boxes

Materials: shadow box, treasures to frame, fabric remnant, spray adhesive, velcro (depending on how well your box stays closed when hung)

To make the fabric lined shadow boxes I picked up a shadow box (in the kid’s section!) of Aaron Brothers with my 40% off coupon and a smaller one from Michaels with their 40% off coupon. Gotta love those.

I played around a bit with the layout until I found a design that I liked. Liv oversaw production.

I bought my first batch of these starfish on eBay for a shower years ago just in case you don’t have a shell shop near you. Is that just us with shops like that? :)

I cut up a remnant from my fabric box for the back of the shadow boxes that I thought worked well with the shells and added a little modern pop of pattern.

I used a little spray adhesive to attach the fabric to the inside of the boxes:

and applied a bit of super glue to the back of each shell before positioning them into the frame on top of the fabric.

The would look great on top of the vintage buffet in the dining room but their real destination was the bathroom:

The little frame might stay there or it might move over to the shelves above the toilet. To be determined.

One of the shadow boxes continued to open up on me so I added a little piece of circular stick on velcro to each side of the frame to keep everything from sliding around.


And there’s my quick update for a space that needed a little bit of art! I loved how the shadow boxes turned out.

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  1. says

    These turned out so cool! I love sea shells and have a big collection – this would be a great project to display some of them.
    btw…I have that same cute little bird plate, only in green! Great minds think alike??? lol

  2. says

    One of our vacation place is the beach because we love collecting of some sea shells in the seashore. We do some stuff like personalized jewelries like bracelet, earrings, necklace and etc. but that thing don’t come in my mind. I am glad to see this post because I got this awesome idea.

  3. says

    That’s too funny – I just did almost the exact same project for my family room! I used sand dollars and a large shell that I found, and a little starfish that I bought in Maine. And instead of fabric, I used large paint samples to add a colourful background :-) Love the fabric you used and how you arranged the starfish :-)

    Easy update for your switch plate cover – spray paint! I sprayed all the covers in our kitchen old rubbed bronze, and they’re holding up great :-)

    • Morgan says

      Great idea on the spray paint, Kelly! I can’t believe I didn’t think of that!!


  4. says

    Such a great and easy idea, stuff you can easily pick up while on vacation. My bathroom needs an update like whoa! The only thing I’ve done recently was take silver xmas balls and hang them off the shower curtain hooks LOL.

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