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DIY Message Board with Lighting

  • February 17, 2017

BuildBasic
BuildBasic
BuildBasic
BuildBasic

The lighting behind this easy DIY message board makes a perfect ambient nightlight in any workspace or kitchen. The simple wood frame is constructed with a few pocket holes screws and nails. The glass is sprayed with "frosted" paint, and held in place behind the wooden frame with simple cleats. Read on to see how the parts come together!

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  1. Project Steps

    1. Step: 1

      Large e477d0d3 8d76 4c70 821f a91405dfbfcc

      Cut the Frame Pieces Lay the 1 x 3 board flat on the miter saw. Using the cut list, Miter the Frame pieces—at opposing 45-degree angles—to the overall height and width of the glass.

    2. Step: 2

      Large c77b2b6a fe67 422d 9648 c397ffac689e

      Prep the Frame Pieces Using a drill/driver and a pocket hole jig, drill two pocket holes at the ends of each short Frame piece.

    3. Step: 3

      Large dac30d9e fc87 4954 a6b4 245cf3f3b402

      Layout the Frame Place the Frame pieces face down on the work surface. Align the mitered ends to create the rectangular frame.

    4. Step: 4

      Large 0031e057 3abe 4422 ac3d cdb61902b5ea

      Assemble the Frame Apply wood glue to the mitered joints. Clamp the pieces in place, and then assemble the frame using a drill/driver and 1¼-inch pocket hole screws.

    5. Step: 5

      Large 4b6e046e f299 4fa8 908a 9c4cc0a59170

      Cut the Border Pieces Place the 1 x 3 board on edge on the miter saw. Bevel the Border pieces—at opposing 45-degree angles—to 1½-inches longer than the length and height of the Frame.

    6. Step: 6

      Large b52a5105 d5e1 413e aec3 8d0a13f951c3

      Lift the Frame Place the assembled Frame face down on the work surface. Position 1/8-inch-thick paint stir sticks under the Frame to lift it off the work surface.

    7. Step: 7

      Large 595abb23 e6bf 489c b822 75ce2b74f757

      Attach the Border to the Frame Place the Border pieces along the edge of the Frame. Apply wood glue to the edges of the Frame and the mitered ends of the Border pieces. Using a nail gun, shoot 1¼-inch finish nails through the Border pieces and into the edge of the Frame. Additionally, nail through the mitered joints of the Border to secure the pieces in place.

    8. Step: 8

      Large 507891ef 4214 4cf9 9a2b 94a17d18b62f

      Cut the Ledge Position the ½ x ¾-inch molding flat on the miter saw. Using the cut list above, cut and miter the pieces of the Ledge to size.

    9. Step: 9

      Large b372577a 8a4b 4923 bfef c25e876735e6

      Attach the Ends of the Ledge Place the assembled Frame and Border face up on the work surface. Make a mark on the Border that's two inches above the bottom edge of the assembly. Position the ledge's end pieces against the border, below the mark, and with their mitered ends facing upward. Apply wood glue to the inside edge of the molding, and then nail it into place using a nail gun a 1¼-inch finish nails.

    10. Step: 10

      Large 213ccbf0 7739 4264 8717 90c7faf44228

      Attach the Ledge Place the ½ x ¾ inch Ledge onto the face of the assembly. Apply wood glue to the front edge of the Border behind the Ledge. Using a nail gun and 1¼-inch nails, attach the Ledge to the Border. Note: Because the Frame is inset 1/8-inch, I only tacked one additional nail through the center of the Ledge. You could also notch the back of the Ledge so that it sets flush against the Border and Frame. Finish by repeating Step 9 to attach the remaining Ledge piece.

    11. Step: 11

      Large cfb80b82 ea01 484e 9b64 97376f64a412

      Insert the Glass Position the assembly face down on the work surface. Place the glass face down onto the Frame, inside the Border.

    12. Step: 12

      Large 3463cb27 6dfa 4f05 adac 824e1b438a91

      Position the Cleats Cut the remaining ½ x ¾ inch molding into four 12-inch strips. Place the strips along the edge on the glass, inside the Border.

    13. Step: 13

      Large 958db403 410e 441a 9d48 6100edeec7d0

      Secure the Cleats Using a nail gun and 1¼-inch finish nails, tack the Cleats to the Border to hold the glass in place.

    14. Step: 14

      Large f549e633 8586 4850 a8f2 73253b078d4b

      Add a Hanger Mark the center of the assembly along its top edge. Center a sawtooth hanger on the back edge of the Border. Secure the sawtooth hanger using a hammer and the nails provided.

    15. Step: 15

      Large ab26eee2 111c 4fb4 92d0 910fb0138dae

      Install the Lights Using a hand stapler and 3/8-inch staples, secure the lights along the inside of the Border, behind the glass. Be sure not to puncture the electrical wires with the staples. Leave enough cord outside the frame to reach an outlet. Consider using LED lights that don't emit heat for safety.

Comments (4)


  • Fantastic design. Thanks for sharing these plans.
    By grover959, on March 6, 2017

  • thank you for the plans...
    By Saisara, on March 11, 2017

  • Love this!!! Thank you!
    By Kmd22, on March 20, 2017

  • Love this build.....awesome idea with the extra lighting. You are so creative.
    By ginger_rose_126257, on March 20, 2017

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DIY Message Board with Lighting

by BuildBasic
Feb 17, 2017
Medium b366ba0d 35eb 4916 9731 cf5b66345cab

The lighting behind this easy DIY message board makes a perfect ambient nightlight in any workspace or kitchen. The simple wood frame is constructed with a few pocket holes screws and nails. The glass is sprayed with "frosted" paint, and held in place behind the wooden frame with simple cleats. Read on to see how the parts come together!

Project Steps

  1. Step: 1
    Huge e477d0d3 8d76 4c70 821f a91405dfbfcc

    Cut the Frame Pieces Lay the 1 x 3 board flat on the miter saw. Using the cut list, Miter the Frame pieces—at opposing 45-degree angles—to the overall height and width of the glass.

  2. Step: 2
    Huge c77b2b6a fe67 422d 9648 c397ffac689e

    Prep the Frame Pieces Using a drill/driver and a pocket hole jig, drill two pocket holes at the ends of each short Frame piece.

  3. Step: 3
    Huge dac30d9e fc87 4954 a6b4 245cf3f3b402

    Layout the Frame Place the Frame pieces face down on the work surface. Align the mitered ends to create the rectangular frame.

  4. Step: 4
    Huge 0031e057 3abe 4422 ac3d cdb61902b5ea

    Assemble the Frame Apply wood glue to the mitered joints. Clamp the pieces in place, and then assemble the frame using a drill/driver and 1¼-inch pocket hole screws.

  5. Step: 5
    Huge 4b6e046e f299 4fa8 908a 9c4cc0a59170

    Cut the Border Pieces Place the 1 x 3 board on edge on the miter saw. Bevel the Border pieces—at opposing 45-degree angles—to 1½-inches longer than the length and height of the Frame.

  6. Step: 6
    Huge b52a5105 d5e1 413e aec3 8d0a13f951c3

    Lift the Frame Place the assembled Frame face down on the work surface. Position 1/8-inch-thick paint stir sticks under the Frame to lift it off the work surface.

  7. Step: 7
    Huge 595abb23 e6bf 489c b822 75ce2b74f757

    Attach the Border to the Frame Place the Border pieces along the edge of the Frame. Apply wood glue to the edges of the Frame and the mitered ends of the Border pieces. Using a nail gun, shoot 1¼-inch finish nails through the Border pieces and into the edge of the Frame. Additionally, nail through the mitered joints of the Border to secure the pieces in place.

  8. Step: 8
    Huge 507891ef 4214 4cf9 9a2b 94a17d18b62f

    Cut the Ledge Position the ½ x ¾-inch molding flat on the miter saw. Using the cut list above, cut and miter the pieces of the Ledge to size.

  9. Step: 9
    Huge b372577a 8a4b 4923 bfef c25e876735e6

    Attach the Ends of the Ledge Place the assembled Frame and Border face up on the work surface. Make a mark on the Border that's two inches above the bottom edge of the assembly. Position the ledge's end pieces against the border, below the mark, and with their mitered ends facing upward. Apply wood glue to the inside edge of the molding, and then nail it into place using a nail gun a 1¼-inch finish nails.

  10. Step: 10
    Huge 213ccbf0 7739 4264 8717 90c7faf44228

    Attach the Ledge Place the ½ x ¾ inch Ledge onto the face of the assembly. Apply wood glue to the front edge of the Border behind the Ledge. Using a nail gun and 1¼-inch nails, attach the Ledge to the Border. Note: Because the Frame is inset 1/8-inch, I only tacked one additional nail through the center of the Ledge. You could also notch the back of the Ledge so that it sets flush against the Border and Frame. Finish by repeating Step 9 to attach the remaining Ledge piece.

  11. Step: 11
    Huge cfb80b82 ea01 484e 9b64 97376f64a412

    Insert the Glass Position the assembly face down on the work surface. Place the glass face down onto the Frame, inside the Border.

  12. Step: 12
    Huge 3463cb27 6dfa 4f05 adac 824e1b438a91

    Position the Cleats Cut the remaining ½ x ¾ inch molding into four 12-inch strips. Place the strips along the edge on the glass, inside the Border.

  13. Step: 13
    Huge 958db403 410e 441a 9d48 6100edeec7d0

    Secure the Cleats Using a nail gun and 1¼-inch finish nails, tack the Cleats to the Border to hold the glass in place.

  14. Step: 14
    Huge f549e633 8586 4850 a8f2 73253b078d4b

    Add a Hanger Mark the center of the assembly along its top edge. Center a sawtooth hanger on the back edge of the Border. Secure the sawtooth hanger using a hammer and the nails provided.

  15. Step: 15
    Huge ab26eee2 111c 4fb4 92d0 910fb0138dae

    Install the Lights Using a hand stapler and 3/8-inch staples, secure the lights along the inside of the Border, behind the glass. Be sure not to puncture the electrical wires with the staples. Leave enough cord outside the frame to reach an outlet. Consider using LED lights that don't emit heat for safety.