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12 Outdoor String Light Ideas for the Best Backyard Ever

Best Backyard Ever

Whether you recently bought a home or are just looking for ways to bring life into a home that you've lived in for years, string lights are awesome DIY projects! With plenty of string light ideas out there, there is something for everyone. There is at least one idea that will catch your eye.

When summer rolls around, nothing is more relaxing than enjoying the quiet space in your own backyard. And depending on where you live, summer might not be the only time of the year where you can enjoy the beautiful weather outdoors. If you have a backyard, you'll want to utilize it in any way that you can.

So, whether you decide to kick your feet up in your hammock while reading your favorite book, or whether you're in the mood for a bit of company and have friends and family over for a backyard party, string lights are there to spruce up the area. Not only do they work as awesome light sources for the evening, but they also work wonderfully as outdoor decoration during the day.

For the best string light ideas for backyard space, continue reading!


1. Lighted Log Pathways

If you have a pathway that connects from your house to a seating area, fire pit, or other space in the backyard, then implementing lighted logs is a great way to give your pathway life. Take a couple of wooden logs and space them on the sides of the pathway that looks best to you. You may want to space them out evenly or place them sporadically along the edges.

After putting the logs in their preferred places, take a good set of 12v LED strip lights and wrap them around each log. You can wrap each log with its own string light rope, or have one wrapped, then lay the rope down along the edge of the path until reaching the next log and then wrap that one. Continue this pattern.

If you don't already have a designated pathway, using the wooden logs and string lights is the perfect way to create one!


2. Lighted Fire Pit

For those cooler states, a backyard fire pit is a must. But having some chairs around a fire pit isn't all that inviting. Make the area feel more welcoming by adding in string lights around the seating.

You can do this by placing the lights on a nearby fence or by hanging the lights from poles planted around the seating area. Don't worry about adding in too many lights. Sometimes less is more, and you can simply hang one row of string lights around the fire pit and chairs. 

3. Lighted Outdoor Seating Area

Not every outdoor space requires a fire pit to function. This is especially true in states where cold weather is not normally an issue. For this reason, we're offering the idea of having a lighted outdoor seating area (one that doesn't require a fire pit).

Place a small table in the middle of several chairs. You can also make a "U" shape with the chairs around the table and have the opening facing your house so that guest can easily walk into the seating area. Then, take string lights and hang them around the area. If you have a gazebo, you can place the string lights up high inside the gazebo.

They're the perfect touch on any seating area and are a good light source for the evening hours. Place several poles around the seats and have the lights criss-cross and extend from pole to pole reaching over the seating. 

4. Lighted Fence

If your backyard is fenced in, consider placing the string lights on top of the fence the whole way around. The lights give your fence character and help light up the entire backyard space. If one strand isn't enough, don't hesitate to add multiple layers of the lights.

This look goes great with bench seating pushed up against the fence.


5. Lighted Dinner Party Pergola

For the best dinner party, light up your dinner party pergola with string lights! You can have them hanging along the open sides like icicles or have them draped across the top inside. But a dinner party pergola doesn't have to be a built structure.

You can use trees overhead, branches that cross over, or even wiring to display the string lights. For this idea, you'll want to use plenty of lights to be sure that the dining area is well-lit.

6. Lighted Flower Pots

Do you love to garden? Even if you're not a gardener, you might still have some flower pots here or there in your backyard, and working with the garden has some great benefits. And other than holding your beautiful plants in place, you can also use them to hold your string lights.

Take a flower pot and wrap a set of string lights around it just as you could do with the wooden logs. You can decide to make a pathway with the flower pots rather than the logs, or you can simply keep the flower pots where they are and light them up! It's also a good idea to think about moving the pots around seating areas.

7. Rustic and Minimal Lighting

You don't need to use a lot of string lights to have the perfect lit up space. A simple rustic minimal lighting look is always appreciated. This is done by placing one single strand of lights between two wooden and rustic poles.

These poles can have a table at the end of them, be the end or start of a pathway, or entrance to a seating area. The choice is yours! This is when less is better.

8. Lighted Gravel Pathway

Some pathways are made from gravel and stones or gravel and cement, and although you might not have wooden logs or flower pots to hold lights along the way, it can still be done. Lay the string lights on either side of the path next to the gravel. You can also purchase gravel and have it laid out in two parallel rows to create the path.

Using string lights to light up the edge not only looks great, but it also helps you see where you're going during the nighttime. Be sure to have metal brackets to hold them down in place and prevent any tripping that may occur otherwise.

9. Lighted Flameless Fire Pit

Do you live in an area that endures mostly warm temperatures? If you do, that doesn't necessarily mean that you have to give up on the idea of having a backyard fire pit. You can still have one and a much easier one to manage at that.

Place a couple of logs into a fire pit, but instead of adding in liter fluid and flames, simply lay on some string lights. This means you won't have to purchase special burning wood and you won't have to worry about replacing the logs or cleaning the pit. It's aesthetically pleasing and quite charming. 

10. Lighted Tree Trunks

An easy way to add a bit of flair to your outdoor space without needing to go out and purchase multiple items is to have lighted tree trunks. Take string lights and wrap them around the tree trunks of the trees that already exist in your backyard. If you have multiple trees, it will add a good amount of lighting.

Wrap the lights around the tree trunks at about eye level. This helps keep the light at the level you need. You can then place a chair or two around the lighted tree trunks. And don't forget to use colorful lights for different holidays or occasions!

11. Lighted Umbrella

If you have a seating area with an umbrella in your backyard, why not take full advantage? Grab your string lights and place them up underneath the umbrella. This makes for the perfect lighting when sitting under it.

And it won't change your already established theme if you have one. 

12. Lighted Inside Lanterns

Forget using dangerous candles or outdated lightbulbs in your outdoor lanterns. Bring life back into them by placing string lights inside the lanterns. Yes, we said "inside."

By taking string lights and placing them inside the lantern, it really shows creativity and uniqueness. The best way to complete this idea is by also adding in some other fun decorations such as pinecones and greenery. For this simple idea, you won't need to add too many lights inside the lantern.

Keep it simple but bright enough to be a functional light source.
String Light Ideas You Won't Want to Forget

These 12 string light ideas are ones that you won't want to forget about. So, be sure to save this page or take some notes before leaving. And while you're on your home improvement journey, you'll need to be aware of these home improvement mistakes!

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