Thursday, April 20, 2017

DIY Giant Marquee Letters

Today I'll show you how to make giant marquee letters (4' x 3') because it's easier than you think!

diy giant marquee letters tutorial

I recently made three giant marquee letters for our school spring auction and I have the steps down below to show you how to do it yourself.

I apologize for the casual photos in this post however I was super busy installing and assembling all of the decor for the event so the photos were last on my list but I still think the tutorial is valuable so here we go.

giant marquee letters spring auction

These giant marquee letters are 4 feet tall by 3 feet wide each.  And I mounted them to a 2x6 frame behind the bandstand so they could be seen above the band members.

I did use this post from Evan & Katelyn as my starting point.  I suggest you read their tutorial as well to get the full idea.

And if you're looking for a smaller version Jen at House of Wood has smaller marquee letters here.

These marquee letters were part of our school spring auction and my friend Cheryl captured a few candid shots during the set up:
irish bash themed spring auction decor

(The tutorial for that giant rainbow pot of gold is here.)

And then right before the band set up I caught this pic of the letters before I left to get changed for the night:

diy giant marquee letters for ballroom space

You can see how big the letters are compared to the people.  They make a huge impact for three simple marquee letters.  It's a big bold statement piece of decor that fills a giant room for very little effort. 

Below are the steps to make giant marquee letters.  Please read through entirely before beginning to plan your project accordingly.

* This post contains affiliate links below.

how to make giant marquee letters

Step 1: Draw the letter shape onto 1/2" plywood and cut out using a jig saw.  My lettering is 9" thick and then I drew a center line.

how to make giant marquee letters

Step 2: Mark the light bulb placement making even marks for 25 holes.  Drill a 1/2" hole for each bulb.  (I used a 1/2" fortsner bit, check your bulb housing for size.)

how to make giant marquee letters

Step 3: Paint the front side using latex or acrylic paint.

aluminum flashing for marquee letters

Step 4: Using gloves unravel a portion of the aluminum flashing.

installing flashing to sides of marquee letters

Step 5: Staple the flashing to the plywood edge.  Be sure to center the flashing on the plywood and use a putty knife to bend the flashing at the corners.

installing outdoor string lights to marquee letters

Step 6: Insert the bulb housing from the back and staple the excess cord to the back of the letter which also holds the housing in place.  Then replace the bulbs from the front side.

giant marquee letters with lights

Plug in and enjoy!

giant marquee letters on stand

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial and find it useful.  Please share and tag me in your posts if you make the giant marquee letters.


If you're looking for alternative marquee projects check out this framed marquee last name sign:

diy marquee sign with lights

Or how about a large number marquee sign for that special birthday?

diy number marquee sign


  1. You are amazing! Huge statement piece with very minimal cost. My kind of project.


    1. Thanks Charlee. Hard to say no when school comes asking.