Why We Love Outdoor String Lights
Outdoor string lights, those vintage shaped bulbs that hang from wires, make ideal outdoor lighting for illuminating patios, porches, decks, pergolas, and other outdoor living spaces. These types of hanging outdoor string lights add just enough light so you can see your dining or conversation partners without overpowering the space. They also adapt well to a myriad of design and architectural styles, everything from traditional to mid-century modern to contemporary. Whether you use deck string lights or patio lights, you'll give your outdoor entertaining space a romantic, inviting ambiance.
Where Outdoor String Lighting Works Best
Although outdoor string lights are a natural for decks and patios, there are a million other places you can use these lights on your property. Consider hanging outdoor string lights in the trees above a hammock or other outdoor seating area, using them to accent the ceiling of your covered deck, wrapping them around your trees, or even stringing them above a fire pit. Deck string lights can also be used to illuminate an outdoor dining room by draping your landscape lighting through overhanging branches or building a support from which to suspend them over the table.
String Light Designers We Love
Not all outdoor string lights are created alike. We particularly like the hanging outdoor string lights from Bulbrite with their vintage bulb shapes, Hinkley Lighting with their diverse variety of fixtures, Pablo Designs with their many choices of bulb shapes and sizes, FLOS with their classic mid-century shades and Kichler with their dramatic wall curtain lights. All of these fixtures will light up your outdoor furniture and entertainment area, create a focal point to draw visitors to your backyard living spaces, and make sure your pathways are safe and easy to navigate, all while adding a festive air to your yard.
How to Choose the Best Outdoor String Lights
There are a few things to consider when choosing outdoor accessories like hanging outdoor string lights. You need to decide on the length (you'll need them to be able to stretch from one anchor point to another with a little swag), the color of the bulbs (colored likes are more festive, while clear bulbs give a classic look), the style of bulbs, and the space between the bulbs. Of course, make sure to purchase lights that will work with your existing home wiring system. For instance, if you find a vintage strand that takes 20 40-watt light bulbs, you'll likely blow your fuses or trip your breaker every time you plug in the strand.
Outdoor string lights and deck string lights are just two of several types of lighting fixtures you'll want to include in your outdoor living area. Traditional design wisdom says that every living space needs to have at least three different sources of light. Your hanging outdoor string lights will work as one type of deck lighting, but you'll want to add two more. These might include lantern lights, an outdoor chandelier over your dining area, and/or pathway lights to subtly and safely light up your walkways.