DIY Silver “Leather” Marquee Letters

DIY Silver Leather Marquee LettersThe time has come. Our family on the doorstep of a major milestone. Everything we’ve known for the past three and a half years is about to change. We’ve reached the time for… the Big Girl Bedroom. (Sniffle, sniffle.)

I have to admit that because of our daughter’s height (she’s crazy tall – 97th percentile), she hasn’t looked like a toddler in a long time. But when she started asking for her room to be a “big girl” room a couple months ago, I wasn’t ready for it. We’d transitioned her from a crib to a toddler bed a while back, but left the rest of her room essentially the same. But now she’s… well, she’s over it. So, it’s time to take things in a more sophisticated direction. We’re still on a budget, so our first move is to remake some of the elements in her room, starting with the marquee letters that spell out her name.

(Side note: She’s three and a half, so obviously we named our daughter before a certain Disney movie came out last winter. It still rankles me that the sweet, original-but-not-weird name we chose went from the 587th most popular girls name to the 88th in the span of six months. Whenever I call her in the grocery store, the head of every small child within hearing distance pops up like a prairie dog. Awkward.)

I wanted to cover the letters with a metallic element, but didn’t really want to paint. My first instinct was silver leaf, but oddly, I couldn’t get my hands on ANY silver leaf in my zip code. None. Not one single sheet of silver leaf at any of the craft stores in my area. Plan B was to give them a more rustic treatment using leather. But that was going to be expensive. The solution? Pleather. Yes, PLEATHER. It basically jumped out at me (literally – it fell off the shelf in front of me) at my local fabric store. I’d always associated pleather with the hideous patent-leather-cat-suit kind of look, but this was silver and had a cool pattern, and it was… pretty. Whaaaa? I snagged a yard and brought it home. DIY Silver Leather Marquee Letters

It’s PERFECT. Super easy to cut, lightweight and easy to glue. And those letters? Looking pretty grown up. I think Anna, Olaf, and the gang would approve…

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Step 1

 Open GalleryDIY Silver Leather Marquee LettersI gathered up my material. When I bought the letters, they were the color of kraft paper, so I primed and painted them glossy white. They’ve lived up on my daughter’s walls ever since. I actually think the silver would look cool against the rustic brown texture of the letters as they’re sold, but you can paint if you want a cleaner look.

Step 2

 Open GalleryDIY Silver Leather Marquee LettersUsing a Sharpie (after trying a pencil, then a pen, and realizing I couldn’t see the lines at all..), I traced around the letters. Trace on the backside of the pleather, and flip the letters to be face down.

Step 3

 Open GalleryDIY SIlver Leather Marquee LettersSee what I mean? That’s the front face of the letter, and now once you cut out your pleather letter and flip it over, everything will be right side out.

Step 4

 Open GalleryDIY Silver Leather Marquee LettersNext up, cutting. Carefully cut exactly on the line your drew while tracing your letters. The smoother the cut edge, the better the letters will look.

Step 5

 Open GalleryDIY Silver Leather Marquee LettersThen I grabbed my glue and got ready to make my pleather covering permanent. I love E6000 glue – I use it ALL THE TIME. Jewelry, wood, ceramics, fabric, etc. etc. It permanently bonds it ALL. Some people are die hard Krazy Glue users, but I just can’t seem to use it without getting it all over my fingers. E6000 just works for me.

Step 6

 Open GalleryDIY Silver Leather Marquee LettersFirst, I used the tube to run a thing line of glue along the perimeter of the letter, so that the edges would adhere evenly and strongly.

Step 7

 Open GalleryDIY Silver Leather Marquee LettersThen I drew thick lines of glue all over the top of the letter and used the paintbrush to paint it all over, coating the top of the letter evenly.

Step 8

 Open GalleryDIY Silver Leather Marquee LettersOnce I applied the pleather to each letter, I allowed them to sit for 24 hours, to let the glue set up.

Step 9

 Open GalleryDIY Silver Leather Marquee LettersThe next morning, they were ready to go! I love the way the silver leather adds a soft metallic accent, nothing too harsh. The texture and metallic element make the letters look a little more grown up, and it only cost me $12.99 in pleather to remake the letters from cutesy baby room decor to sophisticated big girl room accent, since I already had the letters and the glue. If you bought everything I used, it would still only cost you $27.94 altogether, which is not bad, considering how much similar looking metal/wooden letters cost per letter. I hung them on the walls with Command Picture Hanging Strips, so they were easy to remove and rehang, all without putting any holes in the wall. Which means that down the road, there are fewer holes I have to patch when our little girl decides it’s time for a GROWN UP GIRL ROOM. (Sniffle, sniffle.)

Tools

  • Scissors
  • Marker
  • E6000 glue
  • Cheap disposable paintbrush
About Ellen Foord 

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As the founder, designer, and one-woman workforce behind Minnow + Co, a tight budget has never stopped this DIY-girl-at-heart from creating a beautiful, modern, creative home and treating every ...

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