Being a pastor, I wanted my Christmas lights to reflect the message of Christmas. I decided I would cut out words telling the themes for the four Sunday’s of Advent. With a 4×8 sheet of plywood, I drew out a template in Photoshop. This is what I came up with to both cut out the words and a circle for my giant Advent wreath. If you would like to use this pattern, please let me know and I’ll get you either the original PSD file or a high-quality JPEG.
The words are approximately 14 inches in height and with this pattern fit nicely on the sheet of plywood. I borrowed a projector from the church to shine the pattern onto the wood. I traced the pattern in it’s entirety (including the light spots) and cut it out with a jigsaw. After cutting out the pattern, I sanded them down and spray painted them in the colors you see below.
I went to my local Home Depot and purchased LED lights in 4 colors corresponding to the colors of the words. You can see the finished product on the home page to this site, but please refer to the pictures below to see how I put it all together. When putting the bulbs in, I found that the spacing I had was nearly perfect for the lights I purchased (I could run the wire from one bulb to another leaving a hold between). This spacing allowed for me to utilize the lights strings very efficiently.
My only comment is that the strings of lights were terrible. Over the course of December, I had several lights either go out or get dislodged just sitting on the roof. I believe I had to replace or play around with the bulbs 4 times. This was disappointing as these were brand new strings of lights and rather expensive (~$20/string of 100). And being LED, I was hoping to avoid burnt out bulbs and the problems that arise out of that.