In our homes, we use lighting to transform a room and create a certain kind of atmosphere. If we’re having a romantic dinner for two, we’ll use a dimmer switch to turn down the main light to a suitable setting, or lamps to light sections of the room. We may even choose to eat our meal by candlelight.
It makes perfect sense for us to use lighting this way in the home, but what about outside, in our gardens?
Summer is the perfect time to take our indoor habits, like relaxing, reading, eating – outside, especially at the end of a scorching hot day. But there are one or two little issues we need to overcome to turn our night-time gardens into an inviting space where we’d love to spend time with our friends and family.
Top of the list comes lighting. When the sun finally sets over the horizon and the snacks and nibbles are going down a treat, without decent lighting, we’ll be left sitting in the dark and decidedly uncomfortable.
Let’s look at some of the ways how you can use lighting to transform a dark outdoor space into somewhere magical and inviting.
Use fairy lights to illuminate dark seating areas or cosy corners
According to this article on the House Beautiful website, fairy lights are big this season. And will likely remain popular for a long time to come. You can wrap them around the branches of a tree, a pergola, a shed or drape them from your fence. The warm light they emit is perfect for creating a cosy atmosphere on a hot summer night and illuminating seating areas.
They’re available in a range of colours including white. If you fancy something a little different, try red and white, multicoloured, blue or green.
Hang lanterns from your garden shed
Outdoor lanterns like the ones in this photo have a real Christmassy feel to them, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use them during the summer months too. They’re brightly coloured and the lantern’s black frame creates little windows of light. Use hooks to attach them to your shed and you’ll love the effect.
The ones in this photo are powered by the sun, so you don’t need to worry about hooking them up to an electricity supply.
Light up a corner or focal point with an LED rope light
Over the past few years, rope lights have started appearing more often in various rooms around the home. The strips of light add a little something extra to our homes and can be seen at the bottom of kitchen cupboards, behind shelves and along the edges of stairs. They’re subtle and effective.
Why not take the same principle outdoors and use them in the garden to highlight a focal point or brighten up a dull corner? Their flexibility makes it easy for you to change the way you use rope lights as often as you like.
Use a flickering candle lantern to replicate candlelight
Do you enjoy candlelight? Maybe you’d like some candles to illuminate your eating or seating area but you know there’s no point lighting any because the wind will blow them out in no time. If this sounds familiar, why not try the next best option – a flickering candle lantern.
These lanterns are battery operated, come fitted with a timer and have a realistic flickering candle flame inside. They look wonderful in any setting and you can take them indoors during the winter months to use in any room.
Use solar lights to highlight areas of your garden
Solar lights, like the ones in this photo, are possibly the easiest kind of outdoor lighting to install. All you do is bury the bottom part of the spike into the ground and leave the sun to charge them during the daytime.
They’re simple and effective, functional and decorative. And because they’re solar-powered, they’re energy-efficient.
Use solar-powered deck lights to illuminate decking areas
If you’ve got a decked area in your garden that could so with an uplift, why not try placing some of these solar powered deck lights along its edges? They’re easy to fit and they come with an on/off switch so you can power-down when the evening is over and you head indoors again. They’re simple and effective and add a touch of elegance.
If you’d like to know more about any of the lights mentioned in this article, or you want to explore more options, check out Festive Lights.