Rusty Bedspring Marquee Lights
By countrydesignhome on September 01, 2014
Hi, all ! Happy Labor Day!
So, ever since Coach acquired that first set of rusty bedsprings, I had an idea for creating a marquee light for the barn shop. I figured I would just take the bedsprings and attach some lights in the shape of an arrow to the back using wire.
It worked, somewhat, and the arrow became a beacon in our shop in the barn. (This is another one of my creations that, like the vintage sink, that is NOT FOR SALE…says me.) But it bothered me because the cords showed,
the lights were all crookedey and I wouldn’t be able to change the light shape without removing them and starting all over. Plus, because the background was the antique brown wood of the barn walls, you really couldn’t see the form unless you squinted. Or took a photo.
1. Removed all the little pieces of wire and the lights from the bedsprings. THAT was fun. 2. Went to Home Depot and purchased a 4 x 8 sheet of lightweight plywood.
Of course, rusty old bedsprings are not necessarily even, so once I measured and marked the holes, then put the springs back onto the board, I noticed that several did not actually line up with the markings. So I tweaked them just a bit, and then a bit more, and then I drilled the holes.
5. Painted the board with Rustoleum High Heat spray paint.
Now, these little patio globe lights (from Target, LOVE these!) do not get up to a temperature of 1200 degrees Farenheit, but it’s good to know I’ll be safe just in case.
6. Painted a base coat of dark gray. Why gray, you ask? White would be too bright so the lights wouldn’t show up when lit. Black would be too dark so the bedsprings wouldn’t show up. Gray seemed like the perfect neutral alternative. This can of dark gray was a yard sale find, but a very nice quality paint from Mythic Paint. Went on smoothly, minimal drippage, good coverage and is completely non-toxic. Unfortunately, there aren’t any local stores near me that sell it : (
9. Attached the springs to the board, then flipped the board over and placed the light sockets into each hole. Note that the wires are now nicely hidden behind the board where they are not all tangly and messy.
10. Tested out the board by screwing in the lights into the shape I wanted just to ensure they were in proper working order before transporting it back to the barn. In this case, just Hi!. Sent a text to my friends and family : )
There is one problem with using rusty bedsprings as your form: there are exactly 66 coils, so there are 66 lights in total: 6 down and 11 across in straight horizontal and vertical rows. Which means that I can’t really make any curved letters. Block letters it is.
11. Re-installed the “light bright” board onto the rear wall of the barn using some big-ass brackets to make sure it didn’t come tumbling off the wall and onto someone’s head! This thing is HEAVY!! Here is the new, improved Rusty Bedspring Marquee Sign that is now the beacon of light on our shop.
Which is really fun and draws a lot of attention. And, I heard more than a few browsers say “that must be a new sign, it was an arrow before.” Which is great, because that means they are returning to the Barn at Todd Farm to shop some more! Yay!
12. We do a lot of standing around at the shop (oftentimes the booth is so full of shoppers, we can’t fit in it-which is a very good thing!) Sometimes we’re just taking a break from all of the furniture moving, like this old girl.
So we had some time to try to come up with other words for the light board, now that we can easily change it out. Subliminal messages like BUY could work, but I am thinking HUH? or MEH might draw a smile. Do you have any suggestions?? (no profanities, please : 0 Remember, we only have 11 letters across, 6 letters down and no curves!! Have a great holiday Monday, everyone! Hope you are enjoying the fruits of your labor : ) Susan
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