How to Make Lighted Marquee Letters

Usher in fall and the start of the entertaining season with the warm glow of these vintage-inspired marquee-style letters.

How to Make Marquee Letters

How to Make Marquee Letters

Usher in Fall with the warm glow of these vintage inspired marquee letters.

Photo by: Flynnside Out Productions

Flynnside Out Productions

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Materials Needed

  • 24" tall papier mache letters
  • globe string lights
  • spray paint
  • craft knife
  • ruler
  • pencil

Open Up Each Letter

Using a craft knife, cut along the outside edge of the letter to remove the front (Image 1), then remove the stuffing inside (Image 2).

Prepare Letter For Lights

Flip letter over so that its back-side-up and placed on a flat surface. Using a pencil, plot out where each bulb will be inserted. Start by making a mark at the top center of the letter, where the first bulb will go. Then, using a ruler, draw a center line down each part of the letter. Using this line as a guide, equally space the marks about 2-1/2" apart (Image 1). Using a craft knife, cut an X over each mark (Image 2). To widen, push your finger or the end of a marker into the opening (Image 3).

Paint Letters

Using smooth sweeping motions, lightly coat each letter with spray paint and let dry. Repeat coats as necessary for solid color coverage.

Add Globe Bulbs

Once the letter is fully dry to the touch, add the string lights. Pop a bulb through the opening on the front, then screw the bulb into the socket behind (Image 1). Wrap excess cord around each socket as you go to keep unsightly cords hidden from view (Image 2). Add D-rings to the back of each letter, if you wish to hang your finished sign or, just prop them against a wall for a more casual display (Image 3).

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