Backyards should come alive during the summer, especially at night. Learn some fun and affordable ways to illuminate your backyard so you can maximise the space long after the sun goes down.
1. Tiki Torches
These flame lamps are generally staked into the ground and burn oil in order to emit light. Since they can be placed almost anywhere there is stable ground, Tiki torches are convenient and look great outside. An added bonus is that if citronella oil is used to fuel the torches, bugs will stay away due to the subtle scent when burned. Caution will need to be exercised when children or the overly tipsy are around since most Tiki torches have open flames. Line a walkway with them to point out a path you wish visitors to use. This can be a great way to save your newly-planted grass.
2. LED Signs/String Lights
String lights are generally used exclusively during the Christmas season, but since LED lights use less power than conventional lights, they can be left on for longer periods of time without much financial consequence. They are also good for outside use since they are strung above the ground and can’t be trampled on or tripped over. You can drape string lights, also called party lights, alongside the house, over a backyard awning or on the picnic table to allow for medium light. Wrap a few strings around the railing of your deck to add subtle lighting to the area. Choose white over multicolored to bypass the Christmas feel.
3. Candle Lanterns
If you don’t want harsh or overly bright lighting for your backyard, candle lanterns are the way to go. The lanterns come in fun shapes like lighthouses, bell jars and long-stemmed wine glasses, and can hold anywhere from one to eight candles depending on what style you choose. Additionally, there are plenty of do-it-yourself candle lanterns that only require a tea light and a few other materials to create.
4. Quartz Light on Poles
This option is really the one which will light up a backyard. Quartz lights provide a strong fluorescent type of lighting that is very useful for a gathering that has entertainment or activities planned. One potential downside of these powerful puppies is that neighbors may have reason for complaint if the light is angled in a way that could irritate them. For this reason, you’ll want to be extra considerate when putting them up. Also, one quartz light on a pole could set you back around $40 but hey, due to the light intensity you may only need one for your type of party.
5. Light-Up Flooring
Something that could really complete a backyard shindig is a light-up floorboard that both adults and children can enjoy. Light-up flooring has become increasingly popular in the last few years. The floorboards can be used for learning dance steps or as a number of games, but of course they emit colorful lights both sporadically and when pressed and programmed. Light-up floorboards can be utilized both indoors and outdoors with some assembly required.
Now that you have the means to brighten up the backyard, have some friends over, fire up the grill and begin to enjoy the ambience you have created. Both you and your guests will appreciate your hard work.
Sakina Al-Amin writes regularly for an accumulating number of online publications, but has dreams of one day being a spokesperson. She resides in the metro Detroit area with her husband. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.