8 Trophy Display Tips from the Pros

How many times have you walked into a school gymnasium or a friend’s man cave to see a bunch of old trophies just shoved on a shelf? Not the inspiration you’re looking for to display your well-earned achievements? Well, who better to ask than the pros themselves? Just like them, you’ve earned those trophies, so you should display them with pride. In this post, we glean tips from professional athletes and athletic facilities that showcase their trophies in a beautiful way. Here are eight ways to show off your trophy displays.

Cut clutter

Serena Williams’ elegant trophy room is the opposite of a jumble of trophies tossed on a shelf. Visible from behind glass and metal-frame doors, her dedicated trophy room serves up a clean, serene setting for her trophy displays. The tennis star, considered to be among the best players of all time, gave a tour of her home to Architectural Digest, showing off the room she designed to hold some of her Grand Slam trophies and other pieces from throughout her career that mean a lot to her. The open metal shelving on opposite walls of the room matches the door. The modern industrial design of the shelving elevates and distinguishes it from looking like a standard bookcase. Also, the asymmetrical shelves add visual interest; and the open back of the display adds breathing room.

Organize like a pro

Tiger Woods’ secret to organizing his 15 major championship trophies? Designating one shelf for each of the four majors: The Masters Tournament, The U.S. Open, The Open Championship, and the PGA Championship. The idea can be adapted to any type of categorization on display shelf. for example, by child, by sport, by year, by height, etc. Other shelves in Tiger’s trophy room hold sentimental, framed photos, including one of him and his mother taken by photographer Annie Liebovitz, a portrait of his father, and a snapshot of his dog watching him on a television screen.

Carve out space for collections

The Wall Street Journal toured former Pittsburgh Steeler football player Hines Ward’s Atlanta home showcasing his black-and-gold trophy room. The two-time Superbowl champion revealed a built-in replica of his Pittsburgh Steelers locker that was recessed into the wall. (This idea can be recreated by removing a closet door, adding shelving to the closet’s interior, and placing a custom plexiglass shield in front of it for protection). Another recessed shelving unit holds his Superbowl rings and trophy display cases while custom shelving holds helmets and game balls. Framed jerseys of Hall of Famers complete the décor.

Shift the gaze upward

Jay Parmeter, a motorcycle enthusiast and home builder in Wisconsin, built a freestanding trophy room on his property in the style of a pub/pool house. It’s there he displays the winning bikes that his kids rode in national championships (6 in total) and about 300 trophies and plaques. While a bar is situated in the center of the room, awards and racing memorabilia surround the main seating area. Larger trophies are displayed on perimeter shelfing in the room and above the bar; Lower cabinets hold smaller trophies behind glass-front display cases.

Use a variety of trophy display cases

Former Atlanta Braves outfielder Jeff Francoeur made use of various display cases in his former home in Suwanee, Georgia. Glass display cases contain sneakers, hats, bats, helmets, and trophies. An open shelving unit centered on one wall contains a rod to hang jerseys, the shelf above holds a mitt and other memorabilia, and shelves underneath the shirts hold a collection of game balls in a baseball display case. Custom closet pegs hold bats and shelving holds additional sports gear. Framed jerseys fill wall space in the remainder of the room.

Showcase awards on a pedestal

Motocross racing superstar Ricky Carmichael’s trophies take center stage in his trophy room. The mirror-back display cabinet makes his awards shine and stand out even more. Framed magazine covers blanket the walls and just outside the room, 3 of his motorcycles are displayed on the double height wall connecting the lower level to the home’s living space above.

Weave your wins throughout your home

Mikaela Shiffrin has the most World Cup wins of any alpine skier in the sports history—winning her 87th World Cup race in March 2023—and is also a two-time Olympic gold medalist. Her wins are displayed in five trophy displays throughout her home, located just outside of Vail, Colorado. She not only split her trophy collection into multiple displays, she incorporated them into her mountain home’s design. For example, in one trophy display, her crystal World Cup trophies glisten against the warmth of wood shelving. According to Elle magazine, the crystal globes echo the design aesthetic throughout her home, which also includes a crystal icicle chandelier and a quartzite kitchen island.

Create a LOT of excitement

Have a lot of trophies? Take inspiration from the impressive display at the UCLA Athletic Hall of Fame. The Hall of Champions, which houses the university’s NCAA trophies is a spectacular sight. Floor-to-ceiling LED trophy display cases line the walls. Trophies are lined up in uniform fashion for maximum effect. Freestanding display cases feature more awards in the room’s center. Display cubes and risers and are used within the cases to draw attention to each trophy.

We hope these ideas—straight from the pros’ playbooks—inspire you to up the game of your trophy room design. shopPOPdisplays has a wide variety of displays and products to make these winning trophy displays. Contact us today!