The Great Frame-up

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I’ve spent an impressive amount of money on picture-framing over the years. That’s partly because I have a lot of photos and other art in my house and partly because my daughter convinced me years ago that how you frame a picture is guaranteed to either enhance or detract from its appearance. Just as the punishment should fit the crime, the frame should fit its contents. That’s why art museums typically display great works of art in frames that look like works of art themselves.

Frames play an important role in Eagle courts of honor as well. One of the items typically presented to a new Eagle Scout is his official certificate–which will fortunately look a whole lot nicer than the one above that I received back in 1982! Hand the Scout his certificate without a frame, and it looks like little more than a floppy piece of paper. Stick it in a frame, however, and it begins to look worthy of the occasion.

You could spend a lot of money on a frame, but you really don’t have to. Discount stores typically offer basic styles for just a few dollars–there just a dollar at Dollar Tree–and the Scout could easily upgrade to something nicer later on. For example, ScoutStuff.org offers a very attractive shadow box frame with space for both the certificate and medal for about $60.

By the way, you could also purchase an 11×14 frame with a pre-cut 8×10 mat. That’s a quick and easy way to make the certificate more impressive. Whatever you do, just remember that the clothes make the man and the frame makes the certificate.


Speaking of certificates, check out my Eagle Mountain and Eagle Mentor certificates. These inexpensive gifts are a great way to honor your new Eagle Scout and the men and women who helped him reach the summit. And they’re now available in both full-color and classic parchment versions.

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