How To Turn Family Recipes into Art
PPP Contributor Laura here!
We moved into a new house last fall and my goals for decorating have shifted from previous homes. With this home, I am striving to create unique areas, artwork and photographs that are meaningful, and not to buy décor just to fill a space.
I have a small collection of old family recipe cards and I knew they would be the perfect fit to display in my kitchen and kept my goals of unique spaces in mind. I love that the recipes are so sentimental, and tied to them are such fond memories of my late grandmother and great-grandmothers. My grandmother had given me some of the recipes just a few months before she passed, and I really treasure them.
One card features the zucchini bread recipe that my mom makes every year in the fall; another captures her grandmother’s cream cheese fudge that we have every Christmas; and another from my great-great grandmother that is fragile and perfectly antiqued.
There is one “card” that is a recipe written on a scrap of notebook paper by my late Aunt Jean (my godmother, my daughter Abigail Jean’s namesake, and the best person I have ever met) who was an amazing baker and I am sure who scribbled down a memorized recipe so that someone else could make it later. Before I get too emotional, let me just emphasize how special these recipes are to me.
If you have or can track down some old family recipes, I highly recommend displaying them to give you all the warm and fuzzy feelings!
Here’s how I displayed these treasured Recipe Cards:
- Decide on a display area and style of shelves to use.
We had an empty wall in our breakfast nook to fill. I designed and built these picture ledges specifically to feature the recipes and other artwork, but you can put them anywhere you have space to hang, or even just freestanding with décor on your kitchen counter.
Here are some affordable shelving options in different styles to consider:
1 . Rustic Picture Ledges – Under $15
2 . Farmhouse Bracket Shelves – Under $20
3 . Industrial Pipe Shelving – Under $40
For this design, I needed one frame per recipe and chose a mix of 5×7 and 4×6 frames. I laid out the frames with the recipe cards and played around with the combos until I had assigned each card a frame that complimented it.
Since most recipe cards are smaller than a photo, you’ll need some backing to fill the rest of the frame. Any cardstock or paper will work (I used watercolor paper that I had on hand and use for a lot of projects). If you want a more uniform look, I recommend picking one solid-colored paper. If you’re looking for a more eclectic feel, you could use fun, colorful scrapbook paper. The possibilities are endless.
I cut the paper to the size of each frame and centered the recipe on it. I used one small piece of double-sided tape to attach the recipe card to the paper. I would recommend the least amount of tape possible to avoid damaging the card if you decide to remove it later.
I layered the picture frames on the ledges with framed artwork, a couple photographs of my kids, and a photo of my grandparents from the 1940s. I could not be more pleased with the outcome! I plan to change around the artwork for different seasons, and can change the photographs any time. But, the recipe cards will be a meaningful staple of my kitchen décor.
Do you have old family recipes to display? We can’t wait to see how you do it!