DIY Marquee Light up Letters

This is a easy step by step tutorial on how to make your own Marquee letters for under $30

This darling couple hired me to make them their Marquee letters for their wedding in France. They used 24 inch ampersand to pose for and their initials at the reception (see more photos at the end of the tutorial)

Supplies you need for this project:

Cardboard Paper Mache Letter

Globe String Lights

Spray paint

Primer paint (optional)

Drill and 1/2inch bit (optional)

Box cutter/razor

Tape or Twist Ties



Purchase these cardboard paper mache letters at amazon for $5-$10 depending on the size you want. I recommend 12 or 24 inch letters for this project.

Cut the side that will be facing out with the bulbs showing. Unless you want the bulbs on the outside and have the cords hiding in the inside.


Empty out contents

Sand down edges for a smoother finish.


Mark the areas that you want your bulbs on the opposite side. Count your string bulb lights so you know how many holes you need for your correct number of lights.

I drill holes using this 1/2 inch bit.

If you don't want to drill holes in your marquee you can hand cut holes using a box cutter.

After you have all your holes in place, sand and remove any extra cardboard remains

SPRAY PAINT! Any color of choice.

The pain will go on smoother than shown if you prime your letter first

Place bulbs

Purchase your globe lights at Target or WorldMarket

Target sells the bulbs in packs of 25 and World Market sells them in sets of 10 and 30. Target is the best deal for your $$ and both have clear and frosted bulbs.

Attach the strings to your bulbs

After you have all lights attached, fold the extra cord in between lights and secure with tape or twist ties (twist ties work MUCH better!)

This is what your Marquee will look like from the back. If you decide to have your bulbs on the outside your cords will fit well inside and make hanging easier.


This was used at a wedding in France Summer of 2014. Here are a few photos from the reception.


Lights on the outside with the cords on the inside

Engagement Pictures

Frosted bulb example

Close up from photo above



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DIY Marquee letters | Frolic and Frills

I needed too thank you for this good read!!

I definitely enjoyed every bit of it. I have you book-marked too look at new things you post…

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