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August 30, 2012

Sara’s Pink Atomic Shadowbox Goes From a Little Drab To Super Fab!

By Sara In AZ

I’m sure y’all remember my pink atomic shadowbox from my ‘Kitschy Vintage Finds’ post last week.


I super LOVE my new shadowbox, but I could tell one thing was missing. I could tell there used to be some kind of backer on there. I had no idea what the backer used to be, for all I know it could have been cardboard, or wire, or something else entirely.

I bought a set of shadowboxes a long time back and one of them still had the original glass backing, but I could tell this pink shadowbox was not set up to have a glass backing – as the other shadowboxes have a little groove in the bottom for the glass to slide into.

Soooooooo, what to do? What to do? Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

Actually I pretty much knew immediately what I wanted to put on the back!

I have been obsessing over this decorative sheet metal at Home Depot for the LONGEST time!!! I have never had a project to use it on though, so I could never justify buying it…..until now! Ahhhhhhhh, yes *rubs hands together* it WILL go on the back of the pink shadowbox!

Here are a few examples of the decorative aluminum sheet metal I found online, but you may want to just check with your local Home Depot as they may or may not have these specific designs available in these colors. For example, the design I went with was the Union Jack (the last one pictured) I bought mine in brass but they are only showing the silver metallic. The prices will also vary according to the size of sheet you are buying.

Nickel Mosaic Aluminum Sheet



Satin Nickel Elliptical Aluminum Sheet




Union Jack Aluminum Sheet



And ta-da, here is the shadowbox all kitsched out and ready for knick-knacks!




Here is a view from the back. Mike just attached the metal with little nails all around the perimeter.


And here we are, all knick-knacked out and hung up on the wall!


I really love the metal backing, now I am trying to figure out where else I can use it!

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21 Responses to Sara’s Pink Atomic Shadowbox Goes From a Little Drab To Super Fab!

  1. Debra Reply

    August 30, 2012 at 7:41 am

    Now that’s super cool! Exactly what it needed!!!

  2. Sherree Reply

    August 30, 2012 at 8:21 am

    That is perfection!
    I did not realize that you can still get that sheet metal pattern. I see it on lots of mid-century things (little shelves, magazine racks, etc). It looks absolutely wonderful on you pink shadowbox. Swoon 🙂

    • Sara In AZ Reply

      August 30, 2012 at 2:17 pm

      Thanks so much Sherree! 🙂 Yeah, I was pretty surprised when I saw it at Home Depot! I had been wanting and wanting to get it but I just could not justify getting it until we found the shadowbox. You are right though, the possibilities are endless!

  3. Eartha Kitsch Reply

    August 30, 2012 at 9:26 am

    How clever you are! That looks like it was there from day one, I tell you. And yes…what else CAN we use that on? Should we hoard vast amounts of it in case they stop selling it? I tell ya…I’m tempted.

    • Sara In AZ Reply

      August 30, 2012 at 2:20 pm

      Well, thank you Eartha! 🙂 I really appreciate that! I know, I almost feel like we should hoard vast amounts of it because anything that is kinda cool or retro they seem to do away with way too fast.

  4. Charlotte Reply

    August 30, 2012 at 10:13 am

    Sara, this is GORGEOUS! I am a sucker for pink anyway, but the metal backing is perfection. Nice job!

    • Sara In AZ Reply

      August 30, 2012 at 2:22 pm

      Thank you so much Charlotte! 🙂 Yeah, I pretty much knew right away what we were going to put on the back and I am really glad it worked out SO well!

  5. Brian Reply

    August 30, 2012 at 5:01 pm

    That looks fantastic! My grandmother had a magazine caddy made out of that same pattern from the 50s that I absolutely loved. Sold, unfortunately, in an estate sale before I could get ahold of it. That stuff is just inspiring, isn’t it?

    • Sara In AZ Reply

      August 30, 2012 at 8:21 pm

      Thank you Brian, I really appreciate that! 🙂 I would definitely agree that this stuff is really inspiring…I SUPER love all of those different metal work designs they had back then. And that is a real bummer about the magazine rack – maybe you could make a replica now out of this stuff??? Maybe?

  6. Uncle Atom Reply

    August 30, 2012 at 5:09 pm

    Nice job Sara (and Mike!) – I like that idea a lot. I need to find some nodders and figures like yours for my new shadowbox, they look great together.

    • Sara In AZ Reply

      August 30, 2012 at 8:24 pm

      Thanks so much Uncle Atom! 🙂 YES! Definitely get some cute and kitschy knick-knacks for that FAB shadowbox of yours – that would look awesome!!!

  7. Laura Reply

    August 30, 2012 at 10:02 pm

    I’m laughing because just Monday I was at Lowe’s and had dragged several sheets of this stuff out of the little sliding storage sections they have. Great minds think alike! The hardware guy was kind of giving me the stink-eye over pulling so much stuff out. I’ve always called the pattern you used Mid-Mod Mesh, because you see it everywhere on older things, but I have had no idea what it was called. And yes, the question is, what else can you do with it? I’d think you could make awesome outdoor lanterns out of it just by rolling it into a cylinder, whatever size you want. Your idea is awesome! It’s perfect for the shadow box!

  8. Laura Reply

    August 30, 2012 at 10:06 pm

    Ooo. I also have a question. Did you cut it to size yourself? Did you use tin-snips or some other method? Or did Home Depot cut it for you?

  9. Sara In AZ Reply

    August 31, 2012 at 1:46 am

    Laura – HA! That is too funny that you were just looking at this stuff! I am sure we will be able figure out some more interesting things to do with this stuff….I just need a little time to figure it out! 😉 I do like your lantern idea though, that would be super cool! Mike cut the shape out with his tin snips. I asked him and he said it cut pretty well, you just had to be a little careful with it – like not to bend it while you were cutting it and stuff.

  10. Onyx Reply

    August 31, 2012 at 6:15 am

    That turned out pretty awesome, I wonder how well that stuff would take paint, if at all?

    • Sara In AZ Reply

      August 31, 2012 at 11:40 am

      Thanks Onyx! 🙂 You know what, I think that it could accept paint. I’d probably just prime it before I painted it.

  11. sablemable Reply

    August 31, 2012 at 10:39 am

    Saraaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!! God, you are so talented! Looks great!

    • Sara In AZ Reply

      August 31, 2012 at 11:40 am

      Awwwwww, thanks so much Sable! 🙂

  12. Silvercat Reply

    August 31, 2012 at 12:49 pm

    Super cool!

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