For the Grown-ups

Can I preface this post with, I love Craigslist?!?!


It has been a really long time, like since I was putting together the nursery, that I have been on the hunt for some large, vintage channel letters from an old sign. Color of choice has been red. And as I have been scheming and beginning to turn the guest bedroom into a big-girls room, this idea made it’s way in there too since I never actualized finding any that were right. 

Then right in the middle of Christmas Crazies, the debilitating snowstorms, and preparing to travel, a set of PERFECT letters came across my feed reader from an RSS feed I had set up way back when. Not only did I score the ‘A’ and ‘T’ I have been searching for, I got a total of 17 letters, all matching. I know there is something cool and eclectic when all the found objects are different, but I tend to restrict myself to more uniformity than that. While this set of letters was more than I wanted to spend, I couldn’t resist. And the seller was kind enough to hold them until we could both get out of our respective towns easily enough to meet up, which ended up being nearly 2 weeks. 

Somehow we were able to stuff all 17 letters, each of which are 18″ tall and 5″ deep, into our Subaru Impreza wagon with two adults and three kids. We were cozy on the drive home. These letters have far exceeded my expectations. While they are used, they are still in really good condition, a few bits of debris and dead flies in some of the creases. Lighter than I expected, but still all metal with about a 1/8″ red plexiglass, but that makes since given their use. When I pulled out the ‘A’ and ‘T’ yesterday to mount up in the girls’ room, I noticed something rattling around on the inside, so I easily unscrewed the plexi faces with their gold metal ribbon outline off the main part of the channel letter to find the complete neon tubing and electrical cords intact. Now, I am completely unsure if they work, or even more so how to wire them to work (nothing a little Wikipedia or Google-ing couldn’t solve). But what I liked even more was the raw, exposed innards of the sign fixture. 


Originally I had planned to hang the ‘G’ in our room, but upon debating where it should be hung, I realized the symmetry of two exposed letters along the dark grey-blue wall behind our bed was pretty darn awesome. To seal the deal, we just happened to have also gotten an ‘M’ and ‘N’ in the set, now adorning our bedroom. This has been one of the hardest rooms to plan out, as both Matt and I are really (really) picky and sometimes (often times) don’t agree on making the actual decisions of the specifics to make anything happen. The paint color has been a big step, even placing the can spot lights took a few days of discussion. We have FINALLY agreed on bedding. So I was very (VERY) happy when he jumped on the idea of these letters right away (they were up 10 minutes later).


This room has been a focus of late. We are moving into a season of actually having a bedroom that is adult-space-only. When we first got married we lived in a 400-sqft studio (the bed was practically in the kitchen), then when we moved up here we lived in a loft (glorified studio where the bed was directly above and open to the kitchen). Now that we are past the years of child-bearing and into child-rearing, we both agree that this will be our oasis space, a place we preserve for ourselves. Part of that for us is desiring to make it more finished and aesthetically comforting for each of us. At this point, man, we have a long ways to go. None of the outlets have electricity running to them; the walls aren’t insulated; there are a few extra holes in the ceiling; the forced air doesn’t quite make it back here; we have never had decent bedding because we could never agree on how to dress the bed; the curtains are horrid Ikea cheap-o’s left by the previous owners and they mounted the hardware only into drywall, so the rods are constantly falling down; there is no closet; the platform bed we made and it used to be a murphy bed when we lived in the studio, now we want to refinish it and stain it dark; there’s no headboard, so the next DIY project is to make an upholstered one; we actually have some artwork for the walls but haven’t made it anywhere to purchase frames; the small Ikea can lights only come in packs of three, so we still need to make it back down there so the one last corner won’t be so dark. I could go on. But hey, it’s a start.

Plus I am left with 11 additional letters that I hope to sell to makeup the additional cost of buying the whole darn sign. So I will throw it out here: Anyone interested? $45 each and I have the following letters: E (3), S (2), O, U, I, L, R, Plus I have the faces from the M and N for $25. I would have to check on shipping costs, pickup would be easiest but I am not opposed to taking a trip to the UPS store either. Comparatively, I found just the backing with no face (like the ones now mounted above our bed) on Etsy for $65 and just a plastic 12″ letter on three Potato four at $35. I am able to consign them at a local vintage store (they then re-sell these for $150 to $300 EACH, ridiculous) but thought I might offer up these goodies here first at a fair price. Or maybe I should start my own Etsy store…


~ by gdesign on January 13, 2009.

One Response to “For the Grown-ups”

  1. Ooh ooh ooh! I am totally interested in the ‘L’. If I understand your post correctly, each letter has the red insert which can be removed, as you have for the M & N? Is there any way to see a larger photo, so I can be sure?

    I’m in Montreal, so you’d have to ship COD by UPS or something. Let me know if we can work something out!

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