It’s almost time to watch the ball drop and to help you get your apartment celebration-ready, Darby Smart has festive DIY project kits that will help your home sparkle and shine! Check out our previous post to find out how to create Bubbly Toasters—perfect for toasting to 2014. In this post, we will show you how to create a 2014 light-up marquee sign that came in our monthly DIY Mystery Box ($57 for three months).


DIY Project - 2014 Marquis - Supplies

This kit comes with a metallic pen, awl, two sets of LED lights, oversized alphabet stencils and two foam boards (one for practice!). All you will need is tape, four C batteries, Q-tips and nail polish remover.

Step 1

DIY Project - 2014 Marquis - Step 1

First, you’ll need to decide what you would like your marquee sign to say. We decided to create a simple “2014” but you can use the stencils provided to display any message you like. Just make sure your message fits on the foam board provided. You may need to overlap stencils, depending on how many letters/numbers your sign will read.

Step 2

DIY Project - 2014 Marquis - Step 2

Once you have your stencils laid out, you’ll want to tape them down to the foam board to keep them in place.

Step 3

DIY Project - 2014 Marquis - Step 3

DIY Project - 2014 Marquis - Step 3.5

Start filling in your letters. You can either use the metallic pen provided, an alternate colored Sharpie or even spray paint. Whichever method you choose, make sure to hold the stencil down as you fill them in to prevent bleeding outside the lines.

Step 4

DIY Project - Step 4

Carefully remove your stencils. Grab your Q-tip and nail polish remover to correct any smudges outside the lines. Be careful not to remove any of your filling inside the stenciled area!

Step 5

DIY Project -  Step 5

Once your design is complete, use a pencil to mark where you would like your LED lights to show through. Keep in mind each set of LED lights has 10 bulbs (20 bulbs total).

Step 6

DIY Project - Step 6

Using your awl, start punching out holes for your LED lights. Punch holes from the front of the board and only push the awl about half way through. Test the size of your hole using one of the lights and continue adjusting until the light fits snuggly through the hole. Be careful not to make the hole too large!

Step 7

DIY Project - Bubbly Toaster - Step 7

DIY Project - Bubbly Toaster - Step 7.5

Start adding your lights to your design! Insert lights into each of the holes you’ve punched out with your awl. Tape the light cords down to the back of your sign to keep them neat. Insert your batteries and flip the switch to on!


DIY Project - 2014 Marquis - Complete

You can now hang your sign or place it on an end table. All that’s left is toasting to the New Year!