How to Fold a Flag for a Flag Shadow Box Display

  • 0.25
  • Beginner
  • 25-50
What You'll Need
5 feet by 9.5 feet American Flag
2 People
What You'll Need
5 feet by 9.5 feet American Flag
2 People

One way to honor a veteran of the military is to fold a flag for a flag shadow box display. These display boxes are often triangle, and the flag is folded into the same shape. These displays are often presented during a memorial service or other service honoring a military veteran. As a sign of respect, the American flag should never be placed on the floor.

Step 1 – Fold the Flag Lengthwise

Person A holds the stripes end of the flag, while Person B holds the stars end of the flag. Fold the flag in half by joining the right side of the flag to the left side in each person’s hand (length wise). Repeat. The flag should now be one quarter of its original width. The flag's left upper corner to its right upper corner should be in view and facing up.

Step 2 – Fold Initial Triangle

Person A should fold the bottom right of their end of the flag to the left, creating a triangle.

Step 3 – Continue Triangle Folds

Person A should continue to fold the flag, creating triangle after triangle from the flag. This will continue until Person A has almost reached Person B, who is still holding the stars end of the flag.

Step 4 – Secure Excess Flag

When Person A reaches a point when there is not enough flag left to form another triangle fold, take the leftover part of the flag and tuck it into the triangle layer folds to secure the flag together. Person B should be holding the flag now.

Step 5 – Verify Your Folded Flag

Person B should turn over the completed folded flag. There should be 3 full stars along the bottom of the folded flag triangle, with 1 full and other partial stars along the top. Depending on the manufacturer of your flag, your end result may not look exactly like this. 3 stars on the bottom and 1 on the top is the standard flag display, so if yours does not look like this, move onto to Step 6.

Step 6 – Adjust Initial Triangle Fold Distance

Unfold the triangle folds of the flag until you are back at your one quarter width of flag, with Person A holding the stripes and Person B holding the stars. Person A should fold the bottom right of their end of the flag to the left, but instead of going all the way across, the fold should stop about two or three inches from the side.

Step 7 – Install the Flag

Person A should continue folding the flag, creating triangles and tucking in the leftover portion of the flag. If the stars do not show up as they should, go back to Step 6 and adjust the size of your initial triangle fold until you get the stars perfectly aligned. You are now finished folding your American flag for a flag shadow box display. Now just insert the folded flag into the flag shadow box display.