My husband and I never intended to be New Yorkers for life.
One of our favorite things to do was wander one of the many street fairs (where every block has the same vendors twice) and talk about the artwork we’d like to take with us when we left. We wanted a reminder of the rare days when you actually appreciated the city, and felt that magical buzz that had drawn you there in the first place.
We made so many incredible memories here, but it was a constant challenge to find any piece of artwork that ever gave us that warm fuzzy feeling of “remember when.” Everything felt so cheesy and geared toward tourists. Even the photos of our amazing Manhattan skyline view in LIC felt silly after we’d seen the magnificence of the real thing every night. It still takes my breath away.
We gave up on our search for a bit, but when our actual move became a reality – we were panicking trying to find SOMETHING that made us smile and remember our best days in the city.
One night a friend’s husband had a rough day at work, and she hoped to cheer him up with an impromptu pizza party. (Have I mentioned how I miss my LIC neighbors terribly?!) The pizza arrived from a newly opened pizza parlor named “sLICe” – because it was located in Long Island City, or LIC. Cute and clever, right?!
I began appreciating the graphic design on box, because I sadly could not appreciate the pizza inside (my complexion and dairy disagree). Their logo combined iconic LIC landmarks and quotes about American pizza consumption in a whimsical way. The lid even had a photo of the gantries with our apartment building in the background. Our home is on a pizza box! Come on, that’s pretty cool.
There was just something about it that made me smile, and I knew that THIS was how I wanted to remember our time in the city: pizza parties, friends, grabbing a slice on the way home from a night out in Manhattan, the majesty of the Queensboro Bridge, walks by the Pepsi Cola Sign hand in hand as newlyweds and later with a newborn baby.
So about a week before we moved, I wandered in for a $2 slice (for my pizza loving toddler) and then sheepishly asked if I could have a large box as well. I asked him to pick out a pretty one because I wanted to frame it. I expected him to laugh out loud, but luckily he loved the idea! He was like, “Yeah man, this thing is a work of art!” My thoughts exactly, sir.
Rather than trust it to the moving guys (a wise choice), we packed our large and somewhat delicate pizza box in a jam packed car – and miraculously made it all the way to Charlotte without it getting bent or marred.
It took a few tries before I found the right frame (at Goodwill) and the right way to preserve and glorify it properly.
Originally, I thought I wanted to place a mat on top of it and make it look like a traditional piece of artwork. As I attempted to place the thick cardboard box behind a narrow mat…it just looked sloppy, poorly executed, out of place, and downright bad.
I finally realized that instead of hiding the pizza box edges, I needed to put them on display! I loved the artwork, and I loved that it was from our favorite local pizza parlor, so why not just mount it on a solid background and let the lid speak for itself?!
Luckily, our Goodwill had a basic square frame that felt less formal, more modern, was the right price (7.99), and the perfect size to accommodate my box lid – my tape measure is a staple that goes everywhere with me!
I managed to make it pop with some extra black mat board I had lying around from a trip to Michaels. I laid the mat board behind the pizza box and taped it in place, then after checking for lint and adjusting a few more times, I secured the whole thing in place with the annoying (but vital) metal tabs on the back.
Finally, my pizza box was a framed piece of ART.
And that’s how one of the boxes under this counter (and incredible looking pizza) became…
…my new favorite piece of artwork for our home!
Now, where does one hang a pizza box that might cause them crave unattainable pizza at all times???
What’s the strangest thing you’ve created artwork out of lately? This was certainly a first for me. Any other zany ideas for artwork that pairs well with a pizza box?