Sunday, February 6, 2011

Displaying Sports Memorabilia

I recently had an opportunity to display the ultimate in sports memorabilia collections at Pro Sports MVP, a successful sports marketing company.  The owner, David Chavez, had just moved his company into a new building and needed help with his enormous collection of autographed photos, jerseys, balls, and other assorted sports related items.  There were boxes full of footballs, basketballs, volleyballs, etc.  There were also several boxes full of autographed 8x10 photographs of athletes and celebrities.  In addition there were a number of framed jerseys from various sports figures.  After ooohing and aaahing over this amazing collection, I got to work.  The result was a cohesive display of over 300 photographs and sports-related items.
Here are some tips to organize and display your own collection.
  • Sort the items by sport/subject, frame style, black and white vs. color, etc.
  • Determine whether any items need special display (jerseys, balls, etc.) 
  • You can purchase pre-made shadow boxes for jerseys or have them custom framed.
  • The Container Store has the best price and selection for ball display cubes.
  • Specialty cases for items like baseball bats, hockey sticks, and boxing gloves can be purchased from
  • Make sure you have the correct hanging hardware especially for the heavier pieces.  You can purchase these at any hardware store.
  • Lay things out on a table or other large surface.  Start with the largest pieces first and build your display around that.  It is helpful to take a photo of the arrangement so that you can hang it correctly.
  • Hang your first piece centered across the selected area.  Follow the arrangement you have laid out on the table. 
  • Note:  the recommended height for hanging artwork is approximately 5' at the center.
These tips can also be used for displaying other types of memorabilia.  Do you have any special items you collect and would like to display?


A large photo is centered in the middle.
This case was purchased at

Baseball cubes purchased from The Container Store

The jersey, poster and baseball collection make a great display when grouped together.
Here is a variety of frame sizes grouped with 3-dimensional pieces.

A flat screen tv is at home among these baseball photos.

A grouping of horizontal and vertical photos.

The jerseys and artwork are all based on hockey.

The bobbleheads on the second row form a slight arch.

Some three-dimensional items can be hung directly on the wall.


Helmets can be displayed in a cube or out in the open.
These items were grouped together by color
Football cubes purchased from The Container Store
handmade projects


  1. You did such a wonderful job with all those items! Wow, I am impressed! Love your advice for organization and display of memorabilia. My husband has a huge collection of car models, many of them still in boxes in the garage. Someday I would love to see these properly displayed, but right now don't have a clue as to where we put them all! Something like models need a lot of space I think? Have you ever done something like that?

  2. @deansautomotive Thanks for the comment! I appreciate it very much. I have not done car models, but I did see "cubes" for them when I was doing my research. You could probably stack them in the boxes say on a bookshelf. If they are already built, I would recommend using display cubes. They are pretty inexpensive, super easy to use and are stackable! Plus, they keep out the dust! Keep in mind that you can use different cubes for different things other than what they were intended!

  3. I love your picture groupings Carrie. I love groupings myself whereas my husband is an all one level around wall kind of guy ;)I like that you make a list of your tips also. Good job! And I'm so glad you are enjoying blogger Monday!
    Louise Edington
    Facing Fears For Freedom

  4. Carrie - Great ideas. Thank you!

    Debbie Goldberg

  5. Is the 5' rule good to use when we're grouping framed photographs as well?

    I often will use the floor to create a display of several items, but I love the idea to take a picture of it, never thought of that! Such a helpful idea.

    Nice job, thanks.

    Lisa Vitale

  6. Great ideas Carrie. will send off to friends who need some help with their collectables.
    Irene Turner at Home

  7. AMAZING EXPERIENCE! my sons would love this!
    You did a great job organizing everything.
    Your tips may be handy for me as my boys get older and collect themselves! Rachel

  8. Hi Carrie,

    Thanks for such a practical post. Great tips for organizing and useful hints for assembling the display. I found so many new ideas I'll apply every day, and not just in displays, of course. Finally, I love your William Morris quotation as the footnote.


  9. I have to admit, the whole sports thing is way out of my realm...but you got me with the reference to the Container Store and the organization! :-)
    Brandy Mychals
    Communications Coach
    Creator of Split Second Perceptions

  10. Wow! Look at all that! (I don't think I have one single sports item anywhere in my house... so I'm doubly impressed by your demonstration.) I'm sure that you could show someone how to display any collection with these techniques and eye for balance and flow!

    Several years ago one of my clients was preparing to go in for surgery and we were talking about the importance of creating a "healing sanctuary" for her recovery at home. As her spiritual mentor, I visited her in her home. She escorted me into her bedroom. The very first thing I saw was a signed football jersey (Jerry Rice, I think it was), hanging just inside the door.

    Some might find that healing or inspiring... but this woman hadn't even thought about the effect it had on her. Before she went into the hospital, her husband moved the framed jersey (those are quite large, aren't they?) to the family room which is where the big screen tv and sectional sofa were. And they gathered up some of the sacred items around the house that would re-orient the energy of the bedroom.

    Keep up the great design work. It really does effect people in so many ways.

    Tambra Harck

  11. Impressive skills to be able to organize and display all that stuff. I would have been so overwhelmed it would still be in the box. You got skills.

    Lisa Ann Landry
    Vibrating positive energy...what are you vibrating?

  12. Louise,
    Thanks for the nice comments. I'm glad you found the tips helpful! I am loving Blogger Monday!

  13. Debbie,
    You are so welcome! Thank you for taking the time to read and comment on my post.

  14. Lisa,
    The 5' rule can definitely be used in groupings. Of course, there are exceptions to every rule! If you have vaulted or high ceilings, then different heights can be used.

    Taking pictures (even with a cell phone) is extremely helpful when laying things out!

  15. Wow, a lot of great ideas, tips, and resources here! That is a HUGE sports memorabilia collection. How do you suggest incorporating a smaller amount in with non-sports items?

    Pat Zahn, Photo Solutions Superhero

  16. love how you pulled this off Carrie and what a fantastic share. I too get the opportunity to create walls of memorabilia or group display items, and I agree that thinking through pieces, grouping by color, type and using repetition is very powerful when looking to make an impact.

    Jennifer Duchene
    Home Makeover Mixtress blending Lifestyle and Laughter

  17. Great ideas Carrie. My husband collects so many Raider memorabilia and I have some ideas on what to do with them after seeing your very information and creative photographs of the different setups. Thank you. I enjoyed looking at them.

  18. Great suggestions.

    I have some old jerseys I think I will now display.


  19. Carrie- Welcome to Blogger Monday. Great start! You are talented.

    How about little items? Although I haven't even looked at them for many years, I used to be a Star Wars/Star Trek collectable geek, so have many many items such as figurines and plates. I think it would be really fun to display them but I wouldn't have a clue how to start!

    Thanks for the info on sports stuff!

    Candace Davenport ~ Little Books with a Big Message

  20. Hi Carrie - good job in the true sense of the word. That was a lot of stuff to shift and put into a coherent form. Sounds like you thoroughly enjoyed it too.

    My collection is my mandala paintings and they're already on the wall with many stacked up in the attic because we ran out of wall space.

    Need to find a good solution for that somehow. Thanks for sharing all your hard work.

    Fiona Stolze
    Inspired Art and Living

  21. AMAZING EXPERIENCE! my sons would love this!
    You did a great job organizing everything.beautiful post..thanks for sharing here..
    Treadmill India

  22. Nice Article i am thinking of design one of my rooms into a Sports Memorabilia room so good ideas here thanks

  23. Great blog!

    I run a Sports Memorabilia site....take a look if you get a spare minute!



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  26. Lots of good information in your posting, I would like to tweet your blog post so I can visit again in the near future.
    Sports Memorabilia