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September 13, 2008

Displaying Family Heirlooms - WW1 Medals and Photo

This is our framed grouping of military memories of Cecil Sandercock. Cecil was my husband's great grandmother Myrtle's brother and he was killed in WW1, at the age of 20. Myrtle kept all her treasured memorabilia of her brother Cecil and eventually every object was passed down to us. This is one of two framed tributes we have for Cecil.

This grouping, which is in a 15"x24" frame, is Cecil's photo in his Canadian Military WW1 uniform, his medals from the Great War (WW1), his death plaque and the official notice of death which went out, with the plaque, to every next of kin of a soldier killed in that War.

We decided to mount Cec's medals and death plaque directly on to, instead of recessed in, the charcoal grey mat we chose as the contrast mat for the objects were were framing. We chose a lighter grey for the overall mat which would go around the edges. We could have gone with a narrow light grey mat but we felt the framed group was too long and skinny if we did that, so we opted for a fairly wide light grey area around the interior grouping.

The outside frame we chose is a semi-gold frame (although it looks like silver in this photo) with marbled reddish brown flecks. To complement this we chose a reddish brown mat for the death notice and Cec's photo. The outside frame is very large and also raised in two levels, rather than being flat to the wall.

Because the mats change from light grey around the outside to charcoal grey on the inside, we outlined the charcoal grey mat with a detailed gold frame. The interior frame has a raised design which appears sculpted.

Choosing the right spot to hang a framed Family Heirloom or grouping is almost as important as framing it! Because this framed set of family treasures is very large and clunky we wanted it to be above a piece of furniture that was also large and clunky.

This tribute to Cecil Sandercock has a place of honour on our living room, above our Victorian bow-front china cabinet. You may notice another military photograph to the right. That is my grandfather in England circa 1910 in his Kent Buffs uniform, with his rifle and bicycle.

Everyone has their own taste and their own creative ideas, so please remember that my articles on displaying family treasures are only meant to show you what my husband and I have done, and explain why we made certain choices. In the end you must do what pleases you - frame or display your heirlooms in a way that pleases you and display them wherever you like, as long as you display them!



Nikki-ann said...

You've displayed these items wonderfully and given them the pride and place they deserve :)

wendy said...

I have several of my grandfather's WWI & other medals in a framed display as well. However, it was like that when I got it. My husband has spent lots of time trying to run down exactly what each medal & ribbon is for.