the story of the almost Mayflower table

Last year our high school got a new marquee sign for the entrance.

It’s beautiful.

It’s electronic and fancy and blinks all the time and has graphics and dancing birds and the time and the temperature….

…..and announces everything you wanted to know and more.

But that is not even the best part.

The best part of the story is that when the new electronic marquee sign showed up in town….the old marquee and all its letters immediately became persona non-grata.

And Greta the vinyl maker who also happens to be Greta the marquee letter and number seller….

….called me and asked me if I wanted to buy a few of them.

Why….yes Greta.

As a matter of fact….

….yes I would.  ðŸ™‚


pallet numbers in the yard getting ready for this project

I wasn’t even sure what I could do with them.

I mean….marquee letters and numbers?


I remember vaguely thinking I might tie them on top of packages at Christmas or frame a few to spell out a name or add numbers to the front of the house.

Something like that.

Little did I know.

Little did I know that those letters and numbers would become a part of the very fabric of the house…..that they would take center stage in so many different places that I can’t imagine a life without them.

Here’s just a few of their greatest hits.

Small_Space_Design_PlanI clipped them on baskets in the office with vintage clothes pins.

The letters helped create an in box and an out box.

I should have made a “I’m still here” box instead.


I used them to spell the word fall next to some pumpkins.

And to spell the word fall on a chalkboard using i’s for the l’s because I ran out of letters.

And to spell the word Merry.


Here’s a random D that just showed up in the math and science room.

It’s calmly perched between the world and the weathervane.


Here’s a marquee number growth chart that I made with them.

Brought to you by a pine board…a sharpie marker….some hot glue….

….and the numbers 1-6.


Can you see the letter?

This one is kind of the where’s waldo of marquee letters.

It’s behind the clock on this hanging shelf project.


In the craft room that used to be a tanning bed room…. I added the letters to those notebooks from Wal-Mart.

They went into the clear front pocket.

(total disclosure:  they have absolutely no purpose in that clear pocket….except to look amazing).


See what I mean?

They are everywhere.

This folding pallet desk was the home of the letter D before it moved uptown next to the globe.


And lastly….when I transformed the living room three different ways I clipped them onto a garden gate.

Because every living room needs a garden gate and extra marquee letters.

I wish I was selling these.

But I’m not.

The good news?  I’ve found a ton on ETSY that retail for between $1 and $2 each.

You should stop by over there…..

….and sign up. 🙂

PS   I know….I know.

You are probably rolling your eyes right now.

Corny jokes are a terrible way to end a post.


You’ve totally got my number. 🙂

Want to know how to decorate your home for free?
Click here to get my FIVE BEST secrets.


  1. Image for Marisa Franca Marisa Franca

    Again you are showing your genius! Perhaps you should do a hunt and find and see how many letters your friends could discover. It could be a contest!! Wouldn't that be fun. Kind of like a treasure hunt. The winner gets to sit down and drink some sweet tea with you. That would be great!! Love your ideas.

  2. Image for Susan McMullen Susan McMullen

    KariAnne! Again...I LOVE it! As I look through your home, I love the magical way you pull everything together and those little extra touches you bring to each tiny space! So awesome!

  3. Image for Patti Patti

    Thanks for the morning pick-me-up. Certainly needed on this Monday after losing an hour of sleep this weekend. Was that really my alarm this morning!! Yikes.

  4. Image for Kris Kris

    Very cute ... but ... what happens if your kids grow TALLER than 6 feet?????? Will you add an extension ruler? :)

  5. Image for Stacey Stacey

    Well, it makes perfect sense that these letters have become such an indispensable part of your home decor considering how beautifully you always pull them together in your writing. Letters are your life.


    Great ideas. I love Letters, never thought there were so many possabilies. Thank you for sharing all your wonderful ideas.

  7. Image for Bliss Bliss

    I purchased letters to form a saying at Junk Bonanza and when I went to hang them in my son's room my O was missing. I finally found it, and now they are hanging on the wall but I discovered I didn't buy nearly enough of them, I want mOre.

  8. Image for Gwen Gwen

    I remember the day our school where I taught GOT the sign!! It was after 1996--I know that's almost 20 years now but it was so "cutting edge " for a school to have one!! It was all the rage. Every custodian was out there on a ladder and this slider type tool creating messages like TESTING THIS WEEK. Or my favorites were the HAPPY CHRISTMAS BREAK! SEE YOU JAN. 5 And then the times it would still say happy ------ a month after the fact!!! It was a short lived school would we say icon? For all schools do have the blaring lights...forever twirling and flashing. As a teacher I do think the simple black and white letters that stood their space and easy to see were better--but I suppose even the custodial staff got tired of climbing ladders to make sure we knew it was NOON SALES THIS FRIDAY......

  9. Image for Regina Regina

    I must say, as nice as the nice, new whiz-bang sign is, it's rather disconcerting when driving home from Paducah late at night. It's so BRIGHT! LOL! But YOU benefited, so I won't argue! ;) THE SUN IS SHINING AND THE BIRDS ARE SINGING!!!!! Even if I did lose my favorite hour the other night . . . Happy Monday!

  10. Image for Stephanie Ray Brown Stephanie Ray Brown

    Oh you just made me giggle and then I giggled again! My kids call me the queen of cheesy and yes corny too! Love your ideas and would have loved to have had a church attendance sign in an old church that unfortunately burned. Love the idea of using letters to spell out seasons and holidays with clothespin. Even this "Lucy with a hammer" non DIY er could pull that off! Thanks for sharing.

  11. Image for Jill Jill

    Too funny! Love your 10 ideas. I think my kids would have used them to communicate with each other, most likely in a somewhat inappropriate way. Next year you should make a snow depth chart in the yard for the whole season. Hope you had a great weekend!

  12. Image for Anna @ A Good Home Anna @ A Good Home

    Love me some letters! I scored some galvanized ones in the clearance section at Michael's once ($.50 each!) and use them to spell out "M-E-R-R-Y" for the holidays. Actually, they were out of e's so I use a backwards 3 ;) Much quirkier that way, anyway!

  13. Image for Molly Molly

    Funny I saw this post a few days ago, went to the junk store in my husbands hometown and found a whole box of these! Thanks for all the ideas :)

  14. Image for KWolff KWolff

    I wish I still had these from when I was in HS. My parents owned a business on a major highway in our town and the marquee sign was how we did some of our best advertising. The best was when I turned 16 - my mom left the phrase "Propane for Sale" on the top and added "Happy Sweet 16 K" to the bottom. My friends got the biggest kick out of it! On a side note - I love the Texas Tech pennant you have up there! Thanks for representing my alma mater!

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