Two weeks ago, I promised one last fun K-pop prop before the summer, and for my daughter’s 21st birthday celebration last week, we gave her a”BT21″ theme (inspired by the BTS mascots of the same name).
Since there aren’t any K-pop concerts hitting anywhere near us anytime soon, we wanted to surprise her with a little glowing stage background she could keep.
Thanks to the abundance of those LED strips available at discount stores, department stores, craft stores, and pretty much wherever computers and televisions are sold, this was an easy trick to do.
As I close out the month of my daughter’s birthday, and celebrate this June as the tenth anniversary of the big debut of BTS, here is my easy light-up BTS logo* sign DIY.
You will need a couple of cheap battery-operated LED strips (not the ones with the USB attachments) and large pieces of cardboard. I used the big tri-fold backdrops you can buy for school projects because you can get them in black, but any large boxes will work as well.
Cut a large square background the size you want for your piece. Mine was about 24″ x 24″ but feel free to make it bigger or smaller.
Now, draw out your “logo pieces” or design. The BTS logo we used consists of two identical and easy-to-draw trapezoids. The top angle is just a little more slanted than the bottom, but, other than that, anyone who remembers elementary geometry could draw these. Make sure the longest line is at least a couple of inches shorter than the backdrop.
Quick factoid about the logo: the BTS logo is meant to represent two doors opening up as sort of a welcome to their fandom, ARMY. If you’re into K-pop this is one of the most recognizable and simple logos to draw.
If you don’t already have black cardboard, spray or brush paint the backdrop and pieces solid black. You can also spray along the sides to blacken the edges.
Since this logo has two separate sides, I used two fairly long strips of LED lights with a self-adhesive back. Starting with the open end, line the back edges of each trapezoid, and use clear packing tape or a large staple to attach it around the sharper corners. If not, it will peel up. Use the entire strip, until you reach the end with the battery pack. Use clear packing tape to attach the battery pack near the edge, and test them out to make sure they are working.
Make three of your four pillars by folding a triangle tube from the leftover cardboard. You can also use old paper towel or toilet paper tubes if you don’t have enough. Make sure they are long enough, so you can easily reach under the edge of the shape to turn the lights on and off. Use a glue gun to attach them to the back of each shape (be careful not to glue them on top of the light strips), and then glue the other ends to the back piece of cardboard.
Now the logo is elevated from the back. When the light strips are own, they will glow from underneath, forming a neat neon light effect.
Once finished, you can mount it onto another of the tri-fold cardboard pieces (like we did) or to the wall. You can also punch a couple of holes in the top corner and suspend it from a window, ceiling, or heavy shelf. If you’re low on space, you can just set it against the wall on a counter or propped up with books.
The glowing effect will still look cool.
It is hard to believe since the official Big Hit Music debut of BTS 10 years ago on June 9, 2013 (they actually formed in 2010), these guys have broken at least 23 Guinness World Records as a group, not to mention the continual music records they keep breaking as individuals.
It is also hard for me to believe my little 11-year-old who first noticed them in middle school is now a 21-year-old forensics major who loves everything from Glenn Miller to Ice Nine Kills. Yet, those über-talented Bangtan Boys have grown with her for 10 years.
Thank you, guys, for being there with her, and all of us.
*You can use any band or music genre you like. I am pretty sure I will be making a different one of these for our youngest this summer.