Saturday, February 26, 2011

Attract Attention to Your Collection With a Beautiful Display

So you now have your collection; it is safe and tucked away in your closet.  Every time someone visits you eagerly tell them proudly about all the work and effort it takes to create this collection.  After your long exciting speech you say, "so would you like to see it?"  Next are those crushing words that so many of us have heard, "Maybe another time, I have to __________ (fill in the blank.)"   Wouldn't it be nice if you didn't have to force people to look at your wonderful collection?  You know they will love it once they look because others have. 
There is a way to share your collection without feeling like you have to drag people kicking and screaming to view it.  It is all in how you store your collection.  Instead of storing your collection by packing it away create a wonderful display.  Just like in a retail setting, your display is an extremely important way to showcase your hobby and attract attention.  You have put time, effort and care into your collection show it off in the same manner.  I have a variety of collections some are the traditional items and some are not so traditional but most are on display.
My very large collection of postcards are mainly for my business but I do have some personal favorites.  I love sharing my passion for collecting but most people would not want to thumb through boxes of cards no matter how organized I have them.  So I have taken my favorite cards and placed them in a beautiful (but not costly) photo album.  When doing this remember that the acid from old and antique albums will ruin the postcards just like they do with photographs.  There are many inexpensive acid free albums that look antique for sale.  The one that is pictured below is from the Hobby Lobby Arts & Craft Store.  You could also make your own, just make sure that the materials you use are acid free.  Once you have organized your cards in the album simply place it on your coffee table with a nice doily underneath and you will see that many people will pick it up to take a look.


I also love to Rockhound (find and collect gems, fossils and minerals.)  You can imagine how challenging it would be to get someone excited about looking at your collection of rocks.  I have several ways that I incorporate my collection into the everyday decor of my living space.  One way is to have a cabinet and/or a shelf designated for them, but as you will notice in the following pictures that even this simple method has some better, more attractive, ways to set up the display. 

Piece of Amethyst
without a stand


This is the same piece of
 Amethyst with a stand

Since collecting minerals feels scientific I like to display some of them with a science feel.  I thought these spice jars looked like specimen jars.

This simple metal basket was turned into a stunning lamp filled with quartz minerals.

I have too many gems and minerals to display in my living space.  I categorize them and create displays in plastic units with drawers that I tuck away.  This is a practical way of storing them and still be able to keep it attractive in case I have peaked someone's interest with my other displays.
I use simple card stock and Elmer's glue (water soluble) to catalog each specimen
I keep record of where they where and when
 they were found along with any other important information.


Travel is one of my passions and aside from collecting postcards many souvenirs tend to become clutter for me.  I have started a magnet collection in the last few years to remind me of all the places I've traveled to.  This collection is perfect because they are easily packed away if necessary and they take up very little space.  It seems that a person's refrigerator will end up with at least a magnet or two so I might as well make them meaningful.  I have also discovered that the acrylic state magnets, shown, fit together to form a map of the nation.  My new goal is to visit all the states and have complete the map.  Sometimes it is the simple things in life that can bring us the most pleasure.

Collecting antique jewelry brings me much pleasure, but since this collection is more for business reasons I store mine in tackle and pencil boxes.   They now make some tackle boxes in girly colors that are purple and trendy colors; what fun!  By storing the collection in these boxes I protect them from becoming damaged and keeps them well organized.  But I found a wonderful display of vintage jewelry at a local thrift shop.  When making a display like this a person would have to take special care when fastening the pieces to the medium, but it is beautiful. 

My personal experience has been that half of the fun is finding your treasures and the other half is bringing it to life.
Until next time, Happy Collecting!

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