How to Make Light Screens for Discos

Written by jennifer moore
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How to Make Light Screens for Discos
Create your own inexpensive disco lights. (disco lights image by Lijuan Guo from

When planning that disco night party, you want to get the illumination just right and create the disco ambience you want. This will give your party crowd that dancing mood. As you are adding the coloured light filters, think of colour balance, keeping enough warm lights such as red and yellow, as well as cool lights such as blue and green. You don't want the lights to either be too bright or too dark.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • White light bulbs
  • lamps
  • Measuring tape
  • Cardboard
  • Box cutter
  • Clear acetate 8x10 sheets
  • Pencil
  • Scissors
  • Duct tape
  • Glue sticks
  • Acrylic paints
  • Glass paints
  • Soft-bristled brushes

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  1. 1

    Analyse your disco space and choose the numbers of light screens based on the size of the space you are going to use for the disco. Decide on the colours you will use for your light screens. Set up light bulbs to illuminate the dance floor.

  2. 2

    Measure the diameter of one light fixture or bulb with a measuring tape.

  3. 3

    Cut a mask to fit over the light bulb from cardboard using your box cutter. Cut a square 2 to 3 inches larger than your bulb. Draw a circle 1 inch larger than your bulb's diameter measurements on the cardboard square. Cut out the circle with your scissors or box cutter.

  4. 4

    Cut out a clear acetate square 1/2 inch larger than the diameter of the cut circle in your cardboard using your scissors. Tape or glue the acetate square to the cardboard.

  5. 5

    Paint the acetate square with a water-based acrylic paint, using a soft-bristled brush. Apply more paint to create a stronger shade on your screen or less to get a more subtle tone.

  6. 6

    Make other screens following steps 1 to 3. Apply glass paint to the acrylic film to create a different effect. Alternate between acrylic-painted and glass-painted screens. Allow the screens to dry overnight.

  7. 7

    Attach the screen to the bulb using bendable wire, clothespins, small pieces of aluminium metal and duct tape. Attach them so the screen does not touch the light bulb. Attach wire or small pieces of aluminium metal you have cut to the light bulb with tape. Attach wire to the aluminium and hook the wire into each side of your cardboard screen to keep it in place. The way you attach it will depend on the type of light fixture you are using.

Tips and warnings

  • Secure the acetate and cardboard filters so they do not touch the bulb and become a serious fire hazard. Do not leave lights unattended because the filters are flammable.

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