There are many unconventional crafting techniques that we quite enjoy, but of the things that you won’t often see being made at your average “crafternoon” (we have this bi-weekly, gathering our friends for an afternoon of crafting together) are crafts that light up. These are projects that use light strips, LED lights, and the like to make or alter something that looks just a little bit cooler now that it lights up than it would otherwise. Put it this way; we’re so crazy about light up crafts right now that we’re about ready to make our entire apartment and half our wardrobe start shining at the flick of an LED control.
Check out these 15 super fun light up DIY project concepts that will have your life shining as bright as your bubbly personality by the end of the week!
1. DIY light up runners
By now, you’ve probably seen plenty of Internet posts, or maybe even plenty of people, with those super trendy runners that have coloured LED lights built into the soles of their shoes so that they shine brightly as they walk. We absolutely love the trend and were very close to buying ourselves a pair when suddenly we stumbled across this DIY tutorial from Hallmark Channel that taught us how to make our own! We were pretty pleased about this because now we can make any style of runner light up, rather than just what’s offered in online stores. Brightly shining high tops, here we come!
2. Light up inspirational quote sign
Have you always been the kind of person who feels instantly more cheerful and motivated after reading a quick, quippy inspirational quote? We love the ability of catchy words to turn our day around this way no matter what mood we’re in. That’s why we loved this idea from Mariah Kay! Their tutorial marries our love for motivational quotes with our love for light up crafts by teaching the world how to make a frosted quote mirror that lights from behind so the letters shine bright.
3. Light up canvas art
Do you adore the concept of a light up quote decor piece like we just talked about above but you’re not really into the idea of frosting words on to a mirror? Perhaps you’ve tried the technique before and didn’t have fun or you don’t think the style would suit your room’s decor aesthetic. Well, never dear, because DIY Projects Journal has the perfect alternative for you! Check out how they made this light up quote piece on painted canvas instead.
4. DIY light up letters
Perhaps you’ve seen those marquee looking letter displays before that light up a key word or quite like a movie sign you might see on Hollywood Boulevard or a concert announcement like you’d find along the Las Vegas strip? Whenever we see those projects, we find ourselves staring in awe at how impressive they look. Lucky for all of us, Weddingbee has outlined all of the steps to help us make our own! Pick your word and get “lit”.
5. DIY light up high tops logo
Did you like the basic concept of light up runners but you’ve seen so many people with the light up soles that you’re kind of hesitant to join the masses and look the same as everyone else? Then check out how Huffington Post created these awesome light up Converse high tops with a glowing logo instead! We were surprised at how simple and affordable this project was for how impressive it looks when you’re done.
6. LED balloons
Have you ever seen packs of tiny individual mirco-LED lights and wondered what people do with them? Well, we’re not sure about everyone else, but we certainly have a suggestion for you! Check out how Goods Home Design put them inside deflated balloons, blew the balloons up, and created awesome glowing party decor in just a few easy steps.
7. DIY light up curtains
Perhaps one of our favourite LED crafting tools is the dangling string LED with the little twinkly lights all the way down. There are plenty of ways to use these, but we’re currently completely in love with the idea of creating LED curtains! Aneasha Jimison shows you how to make a light up curtain display by hanging the lights behind a pretty white chiffon curtain so they look like twinkling stars. You could try this same technique in other colours too!
8. Light up book cover
Do you remember the days back in middle and high school when schools would give you textbooks but require you to cover them with paper so that the covers don’t get damaged in your bag? We used to draw all over ours, decorating them however we pleased or doodling on them in class when we should have been listening. The older we got, however, the more creative we wanted to get to make studying a little more interesting. This Instructables tutorial will help you take the cake in class by making your textbook covers light up!
9. Light up headboard
Did you like the idea of LED curtains but you’d rather have the twinkling effect around your bed and you feel like curtains aren’t really a feasible option for your setup? Then check out how DIY Real made this fantastic LED headboard instead! Their tutorial shows you how to build a wooden frame, stretch semi-opaque material across, and hide strings of pretty white LED lights inside before you hang it up.
10. DIY light up fairy dress
As if this stunning tulle gown with sparkling gold appliques built throughout the bottom of the layers wasn’t already a complete fairy fantasy in itself, A Designer Life also strung little white lights throughout the tulle for an absolutely stunning and almost ethereal effect. This is a perfect example of how amazing working with battery powered LED string lights can be; you won’t even have to plug yourself into the wall when you wear your breathtaking creation!
11. Light up cursive headboard
Do you love the idea of a light up headboard but the whimsical chiffon and string light look just doesn’t quite fit your decor the way you’d like? Then try something with a little more structure but just as much light instead! Call Me Fudge guides you step by step through the process of building a smooth wooden headboard, painting a saying on it, and drilling holes for intermittent switch controlled lights all along the letters.
12. Easy light up greeting cards
Are you looking for a light up or LED craft that’s easy enough to do with your kids so they get in on the fun of glowing DIY projects as well? Then check out these simple and totally adorable light up greeting cards by Mama Smiles! Have your kids make, draw on, and colour their cards and then help them apply single press-on LED lights in different colours to the back so the light glows through the thin paper. This one might be a Christmas card, but you could make any design you choose!
13. LED curtain headboard
Perhaps you like both the LED curtains design and the idea of a whimsical twinkling light headboard, but you’d rather see the curtains behind your bed than a wooden framed design? Then we say go right ahead! It’s a pretty simple process to build the lit curtains on the wall instead of your window, but just in case you need a bit of a guide, check out this tutorial on Victoria Feliz.
14. Light up sweater
Have you been intrigued by the concept of wearable LED lights all throughout this list but neither the runners nor the gown seem like things you’d wear? Then check out how Paperblog attached battery powered LED lights in fun colours to the inside of a sweater so that the front lights up when you wear it! You might not make yourself an ugly Christmas sweater like this one, but the technique will be similar no matter how you choose to design your version.
15. Light up floral wall decor
Out of all the things we’ve included on our list so far, this light up DIY project might be our favourite discovery yet. Sometimes it’s nice to have something stunning just for the sake of having pretty decor. This beautiful flower frame with interspersed LED lights might now give off a lot of light, but the way the LEDs shine through the flowers will make your space glow like a garden fairy tale scene is bursting through the frame on your wall. See the full instructions for making your own on Anne Le!
Do you know someone who loves flashy light up things just as much as we do, if not more? Then share this post with them for a little bit of shining DIY inspiration!