I have been searching for the right Vintage Marquee Light in the right size in the right color for a while now… basically looking or a needle in a haystack.  And all the DIY Tutorial’s out there have been out of foam core or poster board… I needed something a little more stable.  So when I came across the shop Virago Demure on Etsy, I knew they could make the letter I wanted at the size that I wanted.  They specialize in wood versions of the classic letters & symbols.  Offering both finished & unfinished versions… I went with the unfinished knowing I was about to customize it myself & light this puppy up!
Unfinished Custom Wood Letters
image via Virago Demure
Items Needed:
Wooden Letter (Roughly 20-24″ Tall)
Drill with 5/8″ Drill Bit
Spray Primer
Spray Paint
Once I received my letter in the mail (& did my happy dance!) I went straight to work.  I marked out the spacing of where I would drill my holes for the lights.  Knowing I had 25 lights on my string light set, I  marked my holes being sure to stay centered down the letter.  I then used my 5/8″ Drill Bit & drilled all of my holes (after counting three times to make sure I had 25 & not 26!)
I then primed & painted the ampersand using Rustoleum’s Safety Red.  Seriously, it is the PERFECT shade of red.
Once everything was dry, I hooked up my lights… 
you can see the two year old helped me determine my drill marks… hence the blue squiggles.  To string your lights simply start at one end & work your way through.  The bulbs unscrew and the letter becomes sandwiched between the bulb & the socket holding it all together.
It looks pretty darn convincing in the end… and I am slightly obsessed with the results.  Of course, I’ll still keep my eye out for the real deal but this will definitely keep me happy!
I can’t share the details on where it is really going to live yet… but it’s going to be good!
Happy Monday!!
xo-K