Summer is in full swing and it’s time to enjoy those warm, balmy evenings on the porch. A key component of making these evenings ultra-enjoyable? Outdoor lighting. If you’ve been tirelessly landscaping your garden or configuring the perfect patio setup, your outdoor space deserves to be seen! The right luminescence brightens up a backyard — emphasizing its best features and ensuring safe navigation after nightfall. Whether you have a patio, veranda, or gazebo, read on to discover ways to upgrade your open-air lighting scheme. 

Kakar House used a lantern pendant outdoors to give this outdoor nook some lighting. An outdoor couch, Morrocan ottoman and rattan outdoor chair fill the space
Design by Kakar House of Design / Photo by Kris Tamburello

Treat the Outdoors Like the Indoors

The key to creating a warm and welcoming outdoor space is to treat it like it is its own separate room! Layer lighting like you would when designing an interior. Overhead lighting like outdoor pendants or string lights generously disperse ambient light. Whether it’s wall sconces, candle sticks, or outdoor floor lamps, zone in on task or accent lighting that will create a comfortable and cozy ambiance. 

By layering lighting and installing what are traditionally indoor fixtures outside, you create a stylistic connection between the indoors and outdoors. These lighting options make the outdoors feel like it’s own full-fledged room, which, in turn, will likely encourage you to linger and enjoy your yard more. 

Design by Tim Barber / Photo by Laura Hull

Cast Light on Entryways

Ample illumination near entryways is essential for creating a clear and inviting outdoor space. For porches, flank the front door with wall sconces to clearly delineate the path back inside and enhance curb appeal. Out in the backyard, outdoor wall lighting fixtures like wall sconces, a hanging pendant, or an overhead picture light around an entrance will do the trick. Lantern pendants edging an entry are also a tried-and-true, outdoor deck-lighting classic.  

Light the Way

Ensuring safe navigation through a pitch black backyard is paramount. Install low-voltage track lighting under porch steps or along a stone pathway for optimal visibility. String lights around the perimeter of a patio or a few strategically placed candles not only light the way, but also imbue a dreamy, romantic atmosphere.

String lights give this SUBU designed outdoor patio lighting
Design by SUBU Design Architecture / Photo by Kelly Peak

String Together A Lighting Scheme

String lights are a classic for a reason! They emit even lighting and are flexible enough to wrap around trees, pergolas, and architectural features. Get creative and play around with different ways to tack up your string lights — sling them across your patio, bundle them around your pergola slats, or encircle your deck. Plus, LED string lights also pose no threat to surrounding greenery! 

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Lead image: Design by Chris Barrett Design / Photo by Karyn Millet


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June 24, 2022

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