Displaying Your Collection – Vow to Wow!

For the last few years, I have avoided spending thousands of dollars on wax with the goal of creating the best possible collection of cards I actually want. Because I collect two of the most expensive players in both leagues, and because I dont collect non-autographed cards, one auto usually costs the price of a whole box. Therefore, I have to make sure that when I buy something, it needs to be what I call “display worthy.”

What this whole principle is focused on has to do with my avoidance of having a bunch of cards sit in a box somewhere that I never look at. These pieces are made to be enjoyed, and what purpose do they serve if they are just sitting in a box in the closet? I have always been a quality over quantity guy, and now that I have a son who is moving around and pulling himself up, I need to protect said quality from his tiny little drool covered hands.

Before, I had gone through extreme lengths shopping for a shelf that could display my wares in a limited space. Because my man cave has to wait until we buy a house later this year, I only have a tiny area to display everything. The problem was, at many of the furniture stores in California, the prices were outrageous. We eventually went to IKEA in burbank and bought the black shelf I had used for almost 3 years. Pretty good investment for 60 bucks.

Here is how it USED to look:

When we had Noah, we knew that eventually I would have to figure out a way to protect my stuff. He would start moving around eventually, and the shelf was low enough that he could reach anything on the bottom two levels. The search was on, hoping that we would get lucky again. Problem was, this time, there was no IKEA within an hour of where we live in San Antonio. We started looking on Cragslist and at stores around the area, both with very interesting results. The glass fronted curio cabinets that we needed to buy were upwards of 800 dollars at most of the places we went to.

Eventually we broke down and drove to IKEA, and lucky for us, they had some glass cabinets at a ridiculously low price of 6 bucks a piece. Even better, the two together were the same size and width as my previous shelf, so there was no adjusting of our setup that had to be done.

Here is how it looks NOW (Updated on Right):

Bottom line, I cant believe I didnt do this years ago. It looks so amazing, I cant even put it into words. I also have a little more room now to display stuff, hopefully my “display worthy” collection wont get much bigger any time soon.

So, how do you display your collection? I know there have to be some EPIC man-caves out there.

13 thoughts on “Displaying Your Collection – Vow to Wow!

  1. Did I read that correctly? Those incredible cabinets were only $6? Did you assemble them? Either way, that, good sir, is an amazing deal. Job well done.

  2. My collection goes beyond cards I collect I have massive collections of Sam Bradford, Arron Rogders, Adrian Peterson, Michael Vick, DeSean Jackson, Tim Duncan. David Robinson, Chris Paul and Kevin Durant, and a little Michael Jordan…

    I have frames of authenticated game worn auto jerseys of Adrian Peterson, Tim Duncan, Michael Jordan, David Robinson, Sam Bradford , Dam Marino all hung up on my wall, I love cards and memorabilia.

    I have many many cards that have great value, living in a two bedroom apt I am glad that my wife is understanding with my hobby, altough the action is compenstated with a wesome collection of David Yurman but that is bsides the point..

    Hey Gellman do you have a link for where you get the card display stands at I need to find a bunch ph and can you tell where do you want me to post pictures of my collection at…

  3. My wifes uncle is a carpenter, and he builds me shelfs that I can display everything, stains the wood, look awesome, if you collect items like autos, mcfarlines you have to display them.

  4. This is exactly what I’ve been thinking about the past 3 months. The idea of owning cards that are display worthy as opposed to them just sitting in a box. No one can really acknowledge your collection with them being in the closet as opposed to them being up for everyone to see. My only main concern are UV rays messing up my cards. I haven’t been collecting cards for long but have owned cards that had “spotting” on them which led me to believe they were victim to light rays. I hope that’s not true and would like some confirmation from veteran collectors who can state otherwise. I’ve been so careful as to not expose my cards to any light as much as possible due to the fact that they are mostly high end 1/1’s.

    In anycase I’m glad you brought this topic up. I’ve been looking at different mancaves for the past several months to get an idea of how to design mines. I know IKEA has floating shelves which are excellent for display and perfect to keep wandering hands from messing with them. Also the team paint from home depot is on my list on how to decorate. The glass display cases are a nice touch by the way. Keep it up!

  5. I decided to compromise. I have two 4 ft., 5-drawer cabinets that hold my personal collection in my mancave. The instant wow-factor isn’t there because you have no idea I even have a big card collection unless you start to open drawers. That’s cool though because it’s always a surprise when someone opens a drawer.

    This works well for me right now. The cabinets protect the cards, I can organize and sort any way I wish, and it saves space. They are starting to get cramped though. I estimate I can cram another thousand cards in there, but it will be maxed out. This also allays my fears of light exposure. I don’t want to find out how fire resistant the cabinets are, but they are made of metal and big enough that I imagine a decent percentage of the cards could conceivably survive a fire. You could also dump a gallon of water on top of it and it shouldn’t reach the cards. I’ve spilled a drink on it before since I use the tops to organize and take pics, and it wiped right off. It’s also out of reach of the kids.

    I hope to one day have a den where I can personalize everything myself, but that’s probably 7 or more years down the road. I should have an awesome display-worthy collection by then though. Ideally, I would either build my own custom wood cabinets with tons of drawers or I would have them built for me. I’ve been shopping for old card catalogues from libraries to convert into card cabinets. Having some of those bad boys in a den with a bunch of memorabilia and badass cards on display would be awesome. I would hardly ever leave the room; especially if I put a tv, videogames, computer and wet bar in there. That’s the eventual goal anyways!

  6. $60, I use them for my autographed Prolines. They weigh a ton and are a pain to put together but look awesome when done.

  7. I have had my 1/1’s diplayed for years (from Matt Ryan to Adrian Peterson, to now the ever popular Sam Bradford ) and I have never had a spotting occurance….The curio’s (display cabinets that I have slightly tinted glass which blocks 50% of UV rays you can either do this your self or get a professional to do it, when its done its looks awesome, it’s not really noticeable and it enhances the Card, I dont know how but it does…hope this helps.

  8. Hey gellman you still going to keep your AP collection after his “slave” conversation

  9. Considering that it was probably just a stupid comment that he made, im good. The guy sure does a lot for kids and the community in Minnesota and Texas, im not really going to care all that much if he says something stupid.

  10. good answer just wondering since most of the sports forums are breaking his balls for it

  11. Tinted glass? Never thought of that. I will definatley consider. thanks!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *