Knock It Off

DIY Marquee Sign {Knock It Off Project}

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hey there! I'm monica 

I pride myself on making amazing style and design accessible for everyone, regardless of location, budget, or ability! My design philosophy is rooted in authenticity + attainability - If I can do it, you can too! My work has been featured in countless publications, but I take the most pride in homeowners that have been personally inspired by my DIY ideas and have tried something in their own homes!

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You all are familiar with marquee signs, right? They’re those lighted signs that you see outside of old movie theaters, hotels or casinos in Las Vegas.
These signs are definitely a retro throwback, but have come back as a home design trend in a big way! Adding one brought whimsy and fun to this kitchen and dining room that otherwise lacked both. These beauties aren’t only meant for kitchens, though! They would look fabulous in a kids bedroom or playroom, a fun family room or even a game room. The best part about this project is that you can use absolutely any word that has meaning to you! 
We’ve actually seen a bunch of tutorials for marquee signs using 3-D cardboard letters, and honestly, we toyed around with the idea of using them too. But we knew we wanted this to be a permanent fixture in her dining room so we didn’t want it to be flimsy or break after awhile. Using chipboard  letters (wooden would work too!) from Michael’s on top of a plywood frame made this piece one that will last.
To create the box that your letters attach to, we used a piece of plywood and 1×2 pine boards. Cut the plywood to your desired size and the cut two horizontal 1×3’s and two vertical 1×3’s. Attach those pieces to the back of the plywood with a nail gun, creating the frame. We painted our plywood with the same color as the kitchen cabinets (Summer gray by Valspar) to tie in with the rest of the room, but feel free to go as bright as you want. It’s your project, after all!

Decide how many lights you’d like on each letter and mark their placement. Our bulbs were evenly spaced.
Drill pilot holes where on each mark on the letters. Doing this allows the larger bit to go through the letter without splintering it, so don’t skip this step!
Using a large bit the slightly larger than the socket of the light bulbs, drill larger holes through your pilot holes.
Go ahead and clean off those letters and spray paint them in the color of your choice. We LOVE Rustoleum’s spray paint in Blue Lagoon (it’s the color we used on our giant shaped frame)
Once your letters are dry, lay them back down on the plywood and figure out the spacing you want.  Draw a small “x” in each of the holes and then drill a hole in each of the “x’s” .Place a few dots of liquid nails on the back of the letters and align the letters over the holes in the plywood. Let dry completely. Thread the sockets through the holes and then screw the bulbs in. We used these string lights from Target- there are about 25 bulbs per strand, so plan accordingly.
Room Essentials® Clear Globe Lights (25ct)
We chose to add an outlet behind the marquee sign to hide the cord, but you could easily drill a small hole in the bottom of the frame to pull the cord through. If you paint the cord the same color of your walls, you’ll never even notice that the cord is there!
We think this sign is pretty darn awesome and Linda has since told us that it inspires her to be more creative with her cookies and cakes business!
Haven’t seen this episode yet?  Watch the whole thing online HERE!
Also, we’re always adding new Knock It Off projects to our DIY gallery, so be sure to check those out, as well. 🙂

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