What is a Shadowbox Frame? Is a Floating Frame the Same Thing?

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What is a shadowbox frame? We explain its construction and uses – and explain the difference between a shadowbox frame and a floating frame.

A shadowbox frame is a type of deep frame used to display three-dimensional objects. Its recessed design creates a "shadow" around the displayed items, adding depth and visual interest. Shadowbox frames are ideal for showcasing and protecting treasured memorabilia, collectibles, or artwork.

Shadowbox frames shouldn’t be confused with floating frames, such as the ones sold at MYPICTURE as an optional choice with our canvas prints. In this article, we explain the differences between the two.

What is a Shadowbox Frame. Wooden frame with empty compartments.

Distinctive Features of a Shadowbox Frame

Shadowbox frames have several unique features that set them apart from regular frames:

Function and Benefits of Shadowbox Frames

Shadowbox frames serve several functions and offer numerous benefits:

What is a Shadowbox Frame. Picture frame containing two eggs.

Is a Floating Frame a Kind of Shadowbox Frame?

Shadowbox frames shouldn’t be confused with floating frames. The two frames have certain similarities but the construction and purpose differ.

A floating frame is attached to the artwork at the back, and designed in such a way that a gap is left between the frame and the artwork. This creates the illusion that the artwork is floating unsupported within the frame (hence the name).

We sell floating frames here at MYPICTURE. They’re available (for a modest extra price) as an optional decor frame with our canvas prints. Buyers can add them to their order when the reach the product design page, by clicking the “Premium Frame” section.

What is a Shadowbox Frame. Woman hanging canvas print in floating frame.

Differences between Shadowbox Frames and Floating Frames

There are some key distinctions between shadowbox frames and floating frames:

What is a Shadowbox Frame. Christmas decorations in compartments of wooden box.


Both shadowbox frames and floating frames are strikingly distinctive options, each with its own set of characteristics, functions, and benefits. Understanding the distinctions between the two allows for a more informed decision when choosing the appropriate framing technique for your artwork or cherished memorabilia.

Both play a vital role in enhancing and preserving the beauty and value of artwork and memorabilia, ensuring they can be enjoyed for years to come.

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