Have you seen one of the Cutest Ideas Ever™? They are the Guest Wifi Signs of Pinterest. Some can be kind of clever, but for the most part they just aren’t my STYLE.
However, I do see a huge advantage to having a WiFi login just for visitors. It does allow to partition off your personal devices, not that your friends will intentionally go snooping. But perhaps someone in the house has work files or access through their desktop to other more sensitive job networks, and with the amount of hacking going on, it’s just an added security measure.
So what does one do when they want to offer their guests the login but want to make it reflect their personality? GO GEEKY!
This was a super easy, very inexpensive DIY that I was able to do in about 10 minutes once I had all the elements in hand. Want to do something similar? Here’s what I did:
So many to choose from, only one guest login! I will list some other ideas I had at the end of this post (including Lord of the Rings, Supernatural, Star Wars, Doctor Who, Firefly and Game of Thrones), but I decided to go with Harry Potter theme for now. I thought the Connecto Patronum network name was really great, but I also considered:
- Hogwarts Express WiFi
- Professor McGonagall’s Office
- Shrieking Shack
- Ministry of Magic
Because this is such a cheap and easy thing, I can change it whenever I get bored! So the first thing I did was look for the decals.
WARNING: I first ordered what I believed were decals from Amazon, which I thought fit perfectly, however it turned out that they were only stickers (despite the product descriptions) and I was not as happy with the finished project. So be VERY careful when you purchase decals, make sure the design or letters TRANSFER to whatever you are putting them on.
Because Amazon surprisingly let me down on this one, I found a small online company that just does car decals, and though the decals are perfect for car windows, they are a bit larger than I originally intended and needed to modify them to work with the frame I had purchased along with the first set of stickers. But these are the decals I got in BLACK MATTE (but they have almost any color you could want!):
I did also see this one which would work too:
I found they have a lot of great Harry Potter things, but if you have a special request, they can help you so just contact them!
I wanted something with a thick mat because I knew I wanted the decals around the network information, and found this picture frame with a 5″ picture and 4″ frame for $13.99.
Amazon didn’t let me down with that one 😉
For the Network and WiFi information, I wanted to stick to the Harry Potter theme and use appropriate fonts, so I found and downloaded the Lumos font and the Caslon Antique font, which I found to be great for this project.
You may also like this Harry P font which is the classic lighting bolt font, I just decided not to use it this time around.
Once your fonts are downloaded, for Windows users go to the font file via Control Panel > Appearance and Personalization > Fonts – they should then be visible in in any word processing program you use.
From there it was just a matter of making sure the printout fit the 5×5 picture opening of the mat – for reference, I used Lumos at font size 36 and Caslon Antique at size 32, but I did adjust the line spacing to make it what I wanted.
Here is how the decals arrived, with a white backing, the decal and a clear top transfer sticker:
- Trimming – The wand and the very low-swooping “p” pushed the overall decal outside the visible mat area of the picture frame, so I decided to CAREFULLY trim off the wand and use that as a separate element. Additionally, the Mischief Managed decal was quite large, so I EVEN MORE CAREFULLY cut that so the words were separated.
- Cleaning – I took the frame apart and cleaned the glass (pro tip: use glass cleaner and newspaper to clean, it will leave it streak-free!). Then, on a flat surface, I placed the mat, then the glass, then the frame itself. I did this so I could visually see where the decals would best be positioned.
- Application – I then peeled the backing off the decals and gently laid them onto the clean glass, being sure to only touch the clear transfer sticker – I find it’s best to get the positioning right about a half inch from the glass, then bend the transfer slightly so it starts sticking in the middle and work your way out. This will cut down on any air bubbles.
- Pressing – Once the decals were down, I removed the frame just to get it out of the way, and used a credit card to gently but firmly press the decals onto the glass to get them to stick better.
- Peeling – I then picked up the corner of a transfer sticker and gently peeled it off. If you’ve pressed firmly enough, the decal should remain on the glass. You may find, as I did, that one or two places sticks to the transfer rather than the glass, just put it back down and try re-pressing, or coming at the peel-off from the opposite direction.
- Add your network info – Tape your printed network name and password to the mat, making sure it’s fairly centered.
- Reassemble – Put all the pieces of the picture frame back together and you’re done!
Other Fandom Ideas
Maybe Harry Potter isn’t your thing? No worries! There’s SO MUCH to choose from, so here’s a short list of ideas:
The Hobbit/Lord of the Rings
One of my other favorites is anything Tolkien! The decal place has this AWESOME decal I will definitely use if I decide to go towards this next:
Again, be super-sure it’s a car decal, not a sticker.
Network name ideas:
- The Shire
- Bag End
- Mount Doom
- Minas Tirith
Network name ideas:
- Baby’s Hotspot
- Men Of Letters Bunker
- Singer Auto Salvage Yard
Recommended font: Supernatural Knight,
OH THE POSSIBILITIES. Here is just ONE decal idea:
Star Wars Rebel Alliance Emblem Car or Truck Window Decal Sticker
Network name ideas:
- Rebel Alliance Base
- Order 66
- Death Star
- Yavin 4
- Millenium Falcon
One decal idea:
Doctor Who Sonic Screwdriver Car or Truck Window Decal Sticker
Network name idea:
- TARDIS (obviously)
One decal idea:
Network name ideas:
- Kaylee’s Room
- Companion’s Quarters
Game of Thrones
One decal idea:
Network name ideas:
- House Targaryan
Hope you enjoyed! I’d love to see other people’s geeky wifi signs so link ’em up!
I’m all about saving money, I’ve written before about couponing and budgeting. For a while now I’ve been intrigued by the idea so foreign to those of my Generation X and older: cutting the cord. A lot of people have already, and know how easy and money-saving it can be, but for a lot of others, it’s a whole different world.
We take our entertainment seriously in this household, which means we are willing to pay for certain entertainment luxuries. Multiple TVs in the house, multiple boxes so people could record shows, fast internet connection for gaming and mobile device usage. About the only thing we never sprung for was all the pay channels like Showtime and Skine…I mean Cinemax.
Of COURSE we had HBO. We had to have our Game of Thrones.
But I was already feeling the wallet pinch with our regular $180/mo bill when our 2 year contract with Verizon FIOS was about to end and they informed us it was going up to $230+.
OH HELLS NO. A girl has no patience.
So I finally talk my husband into researching how to cut the cord. I’d already heard that Optimum was introducing 400 Mbps, with talk of service being available up to 1000 Mbps (Gigabit). For reference, our FIOS service was sitting at 150 Mbps and we were already stretching the limits with all the devices in our house in use. But my husband made the argument that he much preferred to stay with Verizon and liked the FIOS stability much better.
Calling Verizon FIOS
So we called them up and asked about their highest level of internet speed – they offer straight up Gigabit for about $90/mo! We were already sold right there, but here’s where we had to compare the shows we watched with our availability to access them on streaming services alone.
When we looked at things honestly, we realized we spent the majority of our time watching Netflix or Amazon Prime which we would still be maintaining, so no change there. However, the biggest concern was looking for a streaming service that offered our regular shows from places like DisneyHD (hey we need our Star Wars Rebels!), Syfy and DiscoveryID.
Calling Verizon Wireless
For this we turned back to Verizon, only we spoke with Verizon Wireless, which is the cell provider for my husband’s plans. They were advertising a very nice deal with DirecTV. After adjusting to a new plan (4 phones on unlimited data), they offered to add the basic DirecTV streaming bundle for a change in his bill of… $1/mo. That’s right, for a single dollar extra per month, we could stream all the channels we always watched, AND we also gained BBC America, which we hadn’t had access to before! And we should have no trouble streaming on any device, whether it’s the TV, desktop, laptop or smartphone!
Ok, so now we had to look for products that would help us stream all these shows (like a cable box) – the most obvious choice we went with was the Amazon Fire Stick. As it simply plugs into our TVs and you can load up whatever app you subscribe to, it’s the easiest and most straightforward flat purchase to make. Not to mention they worth with Amazon Alexa, which makes it SUPER easy to find what you want.
The next thing was looking for a powerful wireless router. While Verizon does provide a wireless router calibrated specifically for their Gigabit service, they do charge $10/mo for it and the model is mid-range residential. We’re pretty hardcore when it comes to gaming and streaming already, and we wanted to be sure our house was set up with the best we could. Ultimately we decided that purchasing this Netgear Nighthawk would be the best for our needs. We were super lucky to get it on sale and with some rewards cash we had saved up, we sprung for the 3 year warranty and still saved at least $100 over what we would have spent renting.
So at this point we place our orders for the gear we need, which is definitely an outlay of funds in the beginning. But since our new month was JUUUST about to roll over, we wanted to take care of things right away. We made the changes, we installed the gear, and started testing things out. Without boring you even more to tears, everything works great, with some small bugs with DirecTV, but nothing that makes us think twice about going back to the old ways!
Now, THE BILL
We just got our bill, and though I trash previously paid bills to avoid paper clutter, I was able to bring up my bill payment history online. Here is what we paid from January through October:
And this is our current bill:
Breakdown of costs over the next 3 years:
What they wanted to charge us for 150 Mpbs, cable service and a landline we done even know the number to because we haven’t had a landline in 7 years – $8,280!
What we will pay for 1000 Mpbs speed, streaming all the same channels we want plus some we didn’t have before, no more landline, and straight purchases of streaming gear and equipment – $3,600!
Total savings over the 3 years – $4,680!
Excuse me while I book a vacation to Europe….