Faced with a constant battle against boredom, most trench art was made by servicemen to pass the time when not in the front line. Trench Art is the name given to objects manufactured by soldiers, prisoners of war and civilians. It was produced from shell casings, bullets, shrapnel and miscellaneous battlefield debris, although similar items have been produced in other conflicts, these are predominantly associated with World War I.

The most common material used for trench art are brass shell casings, which, once decorated, can be utilized as vases. Items include cigarette cases, lighters, ashtrays, and cast model airplanes. Often the items will bear an inscription such as the name of a French village or theater of war and engraved decoration or embossing.

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