Collections don’t have to be serious, long term commitments. They can be made up of a small number of objects that somehow belong together, with a theme that connects them. The objects above were collected on a recent trip to France. Each one has its own story, and will remind me of my time there. But collections don’t have to be holiday inspired. They can be the result of a walk in the woods, objects saved over the summer which tell the story of how you spent your time, or things inspired by a book you loved.
Presenting the objects in an open box is a wonderful way to display them. I found mine in a store called Winners. The really nice, old wooden display cases can be found in antique shops and flea markets. Craft/hobby shops like Michaels also have newer designs. Even dollar stores have shadow boxes you can use. If you decide to hang up the collection, make sure to use a strong glue to secure heavier things like stones.
If part of the collection involves paper, you can consider using Mod Podge to attach it to a piece of wood or a stone. This is what I did with a small section of the Paris metro map.
Finally, this idea began with an image taken by photographer Daryl Benson, who displayed his natural history collection so beautifully.