New This Month


Joy-Themed Christmas Lighting

Write a message in lights to share with all who pass by. We used LED rope lighting (with lights encased in flexible plastic tubing, available at hardware stores), which is bright, energy-efficient, and easy to work with. The rope lighting is secured to a grid of wire wreath forms with heavy-duty cable ties.

Source: Martha Stewart


Use our template for the word Joy, spell out another sentiment, or create your own shape, such as a star or a tree.

Note: The "Joy" template is fairly large and will require about 40 pages of plain white paper.


  • Super Bright Rope light kit (#363-285), 24 feet, by Hampton Bay, from Home Depot

  • Straight wreath forms (SWF26-5), from Maine Wreath,

  • Zip ties, 4 inches

  • Nylon cable, 8 inches


  1. Print out the "Joy" template on sheets of 8 1/2-by-11-inch paper (the image is tiled; its total size is 55 by 48 inches). Arrange the papers on the floor or a large work surface, and tape them together. Or write your own message or design on a large sheet of paper.

  2. Lay out the double-rail wreath-form pieces in a grid formation over the template.

  3. Secure wreath-form pieces to one another with cable ties.

  4. Fold the rope light at its midpoint, halving its length (this will make for brighter lighting). Use cable ties to secure the 2 halves together every 6 to 8 inches. Starting with the folded end and at the beginning of the "J," wind the rope light over the letterforms, securing it to the framework using cable ties as you go.

  5. Hang the frame with attached lights in desired location (at night, the frame won't be visible), and attach extension cord to the end of the rope light.

  6. Turn on the lights and bask in the glow of joy!

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