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Collecting seashells on the beaches of Sanibel, Captiva and the world

Seashell Display Table Ideas

Pam's shell display table with kitty

I always love to see how other shellers display their collections of the beautiful seashells and beach bling they find on vacation. Since it’s been raining for two days, I thought I’d stay inside and show you one of the ways I have displayed some of the shells Clark and I have collected while on vacation. We looooove to sit and look at our shells in our glass top coffee table that doubles as a shadowbox display case… right in front of our comfy couch.

seashell display table pam rambo

Since the table has four sections, I made each section a shell collection from four different trips we’ve taken over the last few years. I bought four square display trays from Michaels then painted them my favorite color… aqua. No surprise there, right? LOL

how to add seashells to a display table

In one of the corners, I have displayed some of our shells and bling we collected on our trip to Cat Island in the out island of the Bahamas. We don’t just collect the biggest and most talked about shells. We love those little minis and the “clam shells” too.

home display of shells from cat island bahamas

In another corner, these are some of the shells and very cool bling we collected while on our vacation in Turks and Caicos. We love to be reminded of how different the shells are in the Caribbean from our local Southwest Florida shells.

seashell display with coral and urchins on turquoise

How could we ever forget our trip to Guantanamo Bay Cuba! It is priceless to us to be able to see … every single day… some our beautiful seashells we collected on such an amazing, memorable trip.

display of seashells collected in guantanamo bay cuba

Speaking of memorable trips… I had to make one of the four sections of the gorgeous shells we found less than 2 years ago on our vacation to Thailand. The whole trip was fascinating and we also found so many “first shells”. Now we can be reminded of them each and every day.

how to display shells collected on the beach of Thailand

As you can see, I displayed each section differently because our shells we collected from each trip have different meanings for us. We love to surround ourselves with memories of our vacations… and shell collecting is a very big part of most of our trips. It’s what makes us happy. I didn’t want to hide any of the shells inside the table so I put only one book (Gift from the Sea) and one shell from Cat Island on top of the glass. Each shell from any place in the world is truly a gift from the sea.

gift from the sea coffee table

I know you want to know where we got this great table, right? Believe it or not…. Rooms To Go in Fort Myers. It was really reasonable and it had all the features we wanted so we didn’t hesitate to get it. I hope this helps you with some ideas on how to display some of the shells you have found from Sanibel, Captiva or wherever you found your treasures.  The rest of our house is decorated with lots of local shells and shells from other trips as well so I’ll start sharing a few more ideas with you (especially when I’m stuck inside like today!).

Oh and PS- Did you notice that sweet little kitty relaxing on the sofa? Yep! That’s our little cutie pie (but not-so-little) “PuppyCat. We got him as a kitten for Christmas and he has eaten us out of house and home (heehee) and kept us very entertained. He has stolen our hearts and even made Dustie fall in love with him now too. Hmmmm… Do you think he loves his new home?

seashell display table with rustie kitty

 It’s clearing up outside as I’m writing this so come out tomorrow (Saturday February 1, 2014 at 9am) and go shelling with Clark and me as we take a Captiva Cruise boat ride to Cayo Costa for some awesome beach combing. CLICK HERE for details.

shelling adventures trips by pam


  1. Love this table & the shells. Would like to have one like this with two drawers so you could change out the view ever so often and display more shells.

  2. Love the shell table. Wish we were there tomorrow for the shelling adventure to Caya Costa!

  3. Wow this is fabulous! I recently took a trip to Puerto Rico and came back with lots of minis and a few pretty neat larger shells as well. I was told Puerto Rico was “not a shelling” destination, so that was not the focus of the trip, but I sure had fun collecting shells and beach glass all across the island!

  4. Love this! I am sure you have lots of lovely shells displayed throughtout your house!

  5. Love it love it love it!!!!! I WANT THAT TABLE!! The cat fits right in, and you have decorated ,what little bit I can see of your house,
    just like I pictured you would!! So cute.

  6. I love the table, love the aqua display cases, love the shells and love the sweet orange kitty on your beachy sofa! Also love your throw pillows! This is a beautiful way to remind you and your husband of your wonderful trips and great memories. My husband and I also love to display shells and other finds from our trips around the house as reminders of good times had in the islands!

  7. Aww, lovely Rustie! He has grown into a pretty lush-looking cat!

    Excellent work on the glass-topped table! Beautifully arranged!

  8. Nice work Pambo! (I just made that up – I am guessing everyone calls you that!) I love the table, the display, the kitty and everything! Thanks for sharing – you have me eye-ing my own display table and thinking that it is time to take out the antique wine paraphernalia and get my shells in there!!!

  9. Gorgeous display!!

  10. I absolutely LOVE all of this, Pam! Your beautiful displays in the table, your couch, and even the adorable cat add so much charm to it all! Just like you I like to display shells that I’ve found from the same area together. One day when I get my recent finds from Sanibel all cleaned and displayed, I’ll have to send you some photos, too. You have been such an inspiration to me!

  11. I love that table – it is so cute.

  12. The new kitty was the first thing I saw in the pic till my jaw dropped at that gorgeous table…the aqua background just makes the shells pop! I’m bad… covering my coffee table with mail/catalogs but I would be motivated to keep this one clear for sure! Thanks for sharing…can’t wait to see other ways you used to display that we haven’t seen before!

  13. Love your display table! It looks like perfection to me!

  14. Pam,

    Your coffee table is gorgeous. The aqua trays are just perfect background for your shells and grouping them by location is a great idea. Love your blog…..hope to see you at the Sanibel Shell show!

    PS Your fur child is adorable.

  15. Pam, is it too late to sign up for the cruise tomorrow. I am here !

  16. I LOVE that table! Those trays from Michaels fit perfectly as well as the color!!!
    I wonder if the store ships? I’ve wanted a table like that for years and years!!

    I think Rustie is as happy as a clam shell!!

  17. I love how you display your shells in your coffee table. I have a similar table which I bought from IKEA to display my favourite shells eg just urchins in one section. Check out their Liatorp range. Like you, i just love to be to see those lovely shells. Thank you once again so much for sharing.

    • Yes! Kwai, I think I saw a table like mine at Ikea here too (in Tampa, FL)….and pretty reasonable too

  18. I love the table soo much that I quickly went to ‘rooms to go’ and nada.. I am lost.. is it a accent table, there are no ‘coffee tables’ but accent benches..and there is a selection for table sets. was the table a display table and you modified it to make it deeper?? help!!! I have seen piano benches with the seat modified with glass to display items but yours caught my eye !! help!!!

    • Barbara, we got the table last year at rooms to go. I really can’t tell u the exact name it was marketed as. We just walked in, saw the table and bought it as is along with some other furniture so it actually didn’t cost that much (as a bundle). I didn’t change a thing other than adding the shell display- it was perfect!

    • I saw the table on the rooms to go website yesterday…..I think it was $499. I saw another similar on on wayfair website that $200 plus…both in the white color!

  19. Very nice! Love to see how you display your Sanibel shells too.

  20. OMG Pam, your timing is perfect as usual!! Was actually looking online for this type of table last night!! Your table is so gorgeous, i am stealing that look for sure….i am decorating my new home in what im calling “vacation home” style, and your table idea will be a focal point of my living room… THANK YOU!!

    • Hey Donna, would you email me? Thanks.

      • Sure thing :)

  21. Just love, love, love this table set up. Very creative and gives me many ideas how to display my own collection that I’m making. On my last trip to Sanibel a nice couple gave me a Sand Dollar that they found. I just love Sand Dollars and that was the only one found on my rainy every day trip. It got broken on our car ride home. Any ideas on the best way to reattach the broken part without damaging the shell with the product used?

  22. What a great table, and such lovely decor overall (including Rustie!). I have wanted a table like this for bird’s nests! But shells are much more colorful and conversation pieces! Great job!

  23. Gorgeous. And love that Kitty !

  24. Beautiful makes my lil ole shadow boxes bow their heads in shame

  25. Beautiful!

  26. Love them against the blue! Perfect!

  27. Martha Stewart look out!! Rambo style headed in. Love your table. Lots of work but ohhhh just the perfect way to show off all your goodies! : )

  28. Love this table, Pam! What wonderful memories when you sit down in your living room. My friend Patti, who was on one of your shelling trips at the end of last year with Pinky, (the Whoop it up girls from Canada) has a Shelling table too. I often this of it and hopefully some day will have something similar.


  29. Love Love Love your table. I do not have room in my small condo for a table like that but you are very lucky to have found it and enjoy your “treasures” every day. I have my “gifts” in clear glass decorative containers. I then can take them out at will and just feel and enjoy the shapes and colors. Then I relive my shelling searches.

  30. Such a beautiful display for your shells. Love your kitty. Just had to have our cat put to sleep forever on Friday and his favorite spot to sleep was on our living room sofa. Just booked our flight yesterday for our vacation to Sanibel Island. Hope to see you on the beach somewhere when we are there in May.

  31. Pam, do you have any cruises in June? I don’t see any listed after May. We are thinking of making a trip down to Sanibel and would like to make it to coincide with your escorted tour.

  32. The table is awesome! I love it and I’m gonna start keeping an eye out for one.

  33. Pam,
    I just love your table and beautiful aqua trays. Your shells look so pretty.
    Thank you for doing the videos so I can watch you walk along the beach and
    collect shells I don’t get here in New Jersey.

  34. OMG, I love it! I want it! I got to have it! Well, at least one very similar to it…..:)
    Thank you for sharing

  35. Dear Pam,
    I discovered your website from another sheller while on my last trip to Sanibel. She RAVED about your site, so I had to check it out. OMG, I just fell in love with it! It makes me feel that even tho I’m not there, I can get a little taste of Sanibel even when I’m at home. I love the live webcam at Island Inn. Some days I just bring that up and have it on my computer screen all day just to watch it……..makes me feel like I’m there in spirit……………….thank you!!!!

  36. Love the table and your shell, also love that Rustie, he is a cutie pie.:)

  37. I love that table and the wonderful collection of sea shells inside of it. I am so so envious! :-)

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