The right outdoor lighting fixtures can vastly enhance the appearance and ambiance of your home. Whether you’re looking to create curb appeal or design a gorgeous outdoor gathering space, outdoor lighting doesn’t just illuminate your home; it elevates it.
Wondering where to start when it comes to choosing outdoor lighting for your backyard? Read on for our favorite tips for beautifying your home – and your life – with outdoor lighting décor.
1. Embrace Layered Lighting
Well-executed exterior outdoor lighting is about much more than hanging a few string lights. For the best results, experts recommend incorporating the three main types of lighting: ambient, task, and accent.
Ambient lighting, the most common type of lighting, provides a soft glow that functions like natural light. Exterior ambient lighting includes outdoor hanging lanterns, post lights, and wall lights. Task lighting, meanwhile, provides light aimed at helping to accomplish specific jobs. It includes path, desk, and security lights. Last, but certainly not least, is accent lighting, which focuses on highlighting a particular area or object. Examples of accent lighting include outdoor wall sconces, floodlights, spotlights, track lighting, and landscape lighting.
When integrated into one outdoor lighting plan, ambient, task, and accent lighting add up to the perfect combination of form and function.
2. Know Your Space and Your Requirements
While it may be tempting to select outdoor lighting based entirely on how it looks, there are some logistics involved – starting with how much lighting you need. Experts recommend multiplying the square footage of the outdoor space you want to light by 1.5 to get an estimate of the overall wattage you’ll need. For example, if you’re lighting a 300 square foot deck, you’ll need approximately 450 watts.
Knowing your room's dimensions can also help you determine the lighting fixtures that will best suit your space in terms of scale. One rule of thumb for lighting porches and patios? Single lights should be about one-third of the door height, while dual, flanking fixtures should be a bit smaller.
The height of your exterior spaces also influences the type of ceiling lights you should choose. While higher ceilings can accommodate hanging lights, lower ceilings may call for flush-mounted lights. And speaking of choosing fixtures, seek out lighting in the same finishes and styles to achieve a cohesive and unified look.
3. Plan from the Inside Out
Of course, designing exterior lighting involves looking at your home from the outside. But don’t forget to factor in the view from the inside, as well. How will the exterior spaces around your home look from the living room, dining room, and bedrooms? This offers several benefits, including creating room-expanding views and minimizing unwanted light in certain spaces.
4. Create a Mood
Lighting is, by nature, functional. It provides illumination to walk, see, and eat by. However, it can also serve another purpose by helping to set the desired mood for entertaining. In general, the soft, subtle glow of outdoor lanterns, ceiling fans, and outdoor light pendants are preferable to a glaring spotlight.
Additionally, using a dimmer switch can help you control the light depending on the circumstances. For example, while full light may be necessary while you’re preparing a meal, dim lighting creates a more relaxing environment during cocktail hour and dinner.
5. Don’t Forget About Security
Another secondary but vital function of outdoor lighting? Security. Mindful outdoor lighting, such as path lights, post lights, pier lights, spotlights, floodlights, and wall lanterns, can make your home a safer place. Exterior lighting enhances security by illuminating all entry points and walkways while eliminating shadows and potential hiding spots.
Enhance Your Exterior Spaces with Outdoor Lighting from Fashion Light Center
As one of the most trusted lighting stores in CT, Fashion Light Center is dedicated to helping you create beautiful outdoor spaces. We carry an extensive inventory of lighting options from some of the world’s most esteemed brands, including Genie House, Northeast Lantern, Hinkley, and more. Shop our selection today to bring your outdoor lighting vision to life.