DIY Neon Sign Tutorial

You know that feeling you get deep down when everything seems to be going great? Those are good vibes! Wrap your home in this positive spirit with a good vibes sign right on your mantle. Electric neon signs have been used for decades . They are bright beacons that attract customers to all kinds of business establishments since their invention. When they started making small versions of these signs that could be hung at home, the alluring lights started showing up in houses of the hip and trendy during the 80’s. But what an investment! With this knock-off technique, you can create your own sign in any font, color or message you choose on a slim budget!

This unique piece of wall art looks good during the day with it’s painted ombre effect or in the night with its neon glow. And, it would look awesome next to you in an 80’s costume. Learn how to evoke positivity with our step by step tutorial!

This bright decorating idea was created, shot and written by Tara at Spot of Tea Designs. Her blog is full of great tips that might help shine a little light on your creative projects.

DIY Neon Light Supplies

DIY Neon Sign Tutorial

  • 15 ft Blue EL Wire
  • Thick Blue flexible wire (to shape your word)
  • 36” x 14” Board
  • Acrylic Paint – Dark purple, navy blue, light blue
  • Hot Glue Gun
  • Drill
  • Pencil
  • Thin wire (for securing purposes)
  • Wire cutters
  • Yarn (used for measurement purposes, but not actually used in this project)
  • Good Vibes Template PDF
  • 2 AA Batteries
  • Painter’s tape

DIY Neon Sign Tutorial

First, paint the background in a dark purple and blue ombre design.

Next, sketch out your design. You’ll want to create a shape or words that are all connected together as you’ll use one continuous piece of EL wire. If you want to create our Good Vibes design, download our template. It will print onto 6 sheets so you’ll need to overlap and tape the design together.

DIY Neon Sign Tutorial

To check whether you have enough EL wire to cover the full phrase or design, use a piece of yarn which is the same length of the design.

DIY Neon Sign Tutorial

Bend your flexible wire over the design to recreate it. This will be the piece you attach to your board and ultimately attach the EL wire to make it glow.

DIY Neon Sign Tutorial

Lay the wire word onto the painted wood.  Identify the start and end of your design by drawing two larger holes. In the case of our design, it was the start of the letter G and at the inside of the swirl over the “i”. This is where you’ll run the EL wire through from the back and where you may end it, in case there is any extra length.

Draw two smaller pencil marks over each of the key turn points in your phrase.  This includes at the tops and bottoms of curves, or any tight intersection points. This will be the anchor points where you can hold your wire to the painted wood.

DIY Neon Sign Tutorial

Insert a drill bit the size of your EL wire into the drill. Create two holes for the start and endpoints.

Insert a smaller drill bit the size of your anchor wire into the drill. Create two holes at each of the anchor points, as indicated by your pencil marks.

DIY Neon Sign Tutorial

Lay your flexible wire word back onto the board.

Cut a small piece of anchoring wire and thread it through both holes, over the flexible wire word. Twist it together on the back of the wood board.

DIY Neon Sign Tutorial

Continue using thin wire on all the anchor points to secure the flexible wire word to the board through the pre-drilled anchor points.

DIY Neon Sign Tutorial

Flip the board over and apply painter’s tape over all the wires. This will prevent them from scratching your wall if hung or leaned up against a mantle.

DIY Neon Sign Tutorial

Next, add batteries to your battery pack. Thread the EL wire through the large starting hole on the board from the back to the front. Secure the battery pack on the back using more tape.

DIY Neon Sign Tutorial

Use hot-glue to adhere the EL wire onto the flexible word wire you have secured to the board.

DIY Neon Sign Tutorial

Insert the end of the EL wire through the other large hole created and secure with hot glue.

DIY Neon Sign Tutorial

Hang on your wall or lean up on your mantle. Press the button to make the words glow or press it a second time to make it blink.

Now you can bask in the glow of the Good Vibes anytime you want!


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DIY Neon Sign Tutorial

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