6 Best Lighting Ideas to Illuminate Your Backyard

Creative backyard lighting ideas make a huge impact not only on the look and feel of a home’s exterior but also on the homeowner’s use and enjoyment of the space. Backyard lighting can illuminate walkways, making them safer for family and guests. They also give the home a design boost. A perfectly lit backyard makes cool spring evenings cozier, and warm summer ones last longer.

Subtle Lighting for Entertaining

Outdoor entertaining areas need subtle, indirect lighting that gives a soft glow and creates a restful mood. Outdoor lanterns and pendants are great for illuminating dining and seating areas. Add a dimmer to control the lighting – full light for preparing food or cooking, and lower for relaxing and eating.

“I always consider the surrounding elements. Including those from weather exposure, seating arrangements, function, and ambiance,” says Melissa Roberts @melissarobertsinteriors. When thinking about lighting for the backyard, “It is important to understand why the lighting is needed. Is this the only light source for the space, or is it simply a statement piece? Ask yourself this question first but definitely consider what harsh elements the lighting can be exposed to so that you chose one that best fits the climate.”

Designed by @melissarobertsinteriors

Sierra Pendant by Troy Lighting

Lighting is the capstone of the design of any space, including outdoor ones. It can instantly change the mood of a space. A stunning pendant such as Sierra Pendant by Troy Lighting brings a dramatic organic presence to this outdoor space. Hand-sculpted iron branches finished in bronze filter the light from exposed Edison bulbs to cast a warm glow.

Make Safety a Part of the Design

Backyard lighting not only creates ambiance but can also be a safety feature in your backyard. Just like you would install lighting over your front door, backyard entryways need lighting, too. A sconce mounted by the backdoor adds a design element that also makes stairs and entryways safe and secure. Backyard wall lighting illuminates and improves navigation in small, recessed spaces where shadows tend to lurk. Wall sconces work well in these areas because they shed downlight onto recessed areas.

Designed by @featherglass

Feiss Patrice 22 Inch Tall 3 Light Outdoor Wall Light by Generation Lighting

Lighting for safety doesn’t have to be harsh and bright, it can be warm and inviting, like Feiss Patrice 22 Inch tall 3 Light Outdoor Wall Light by Generation Lighting. With three outdoor lights in one fixture, it enhances the home’s beauty while making it safer and more secure. The finish is heavily textured and tactile, and the design works well with a range of styles. It provides a lovely glow that increases the amount of pleasurable hours that can be spent outdoors.

Lanterns, Lanterns Everywhere

Lanterns are one of the most versatile types of outdoor home lighting. They bring visual interest while softly illuminating items that families often reach for when entertaining or eating outside: beverages, snacks, and board games, to name just a few. And there are so many types and styles that it is easy to find one to fit any space.

Choose lanterns with a translucent as opposed to a clear glass covering to provide diffuse, glare-free nighttime lighting that doesn’t distract from other backyard light fixtures.

Lido 29 Inch Tall 9 Light Outdoor Hanging Lantern by Maxim Lighting

For larger backyard spaces, doubling up on wagon wheel lanterns such as the Lido 29 Inch Tall 9 Light Outdoor Hanging Lantern by Maxim Lighting spreads light evenly throughout the space. The classic ring design and dome-shaped diffusers made of recycled seedy glass offer glare-free nighttime lighting with a rustic, hand-crafted look.

Corbin 27 Inch Tall 6 Light Outdoor Hanging Lantern and 18 Inch Tall Outdoor Wall Light

The cage silhouette of the Corbin 27 Inch Tall 6 Light Outdoor Hanging Lantern by Capital Lighting Fixture Company and Capital Lighting Fixture Company Corbin 18 Inch Tall Outdoor Wall Light creates a cozy vibe that makes this a genuinely all-seasons space. Paired with the fireplace, they make the space warm and welcoming on crisp fall and cool spring nights. And they are just as stunning on warm spring and summer days, giving the porch a farmhouse flair.

Nantucket Led E26 23 Inch Tall 1 Light LED Outdoor Wall Light by Maxim Lighting

The perfect blend design and function, the Nantucket Led E26 23 Inch Tall 1 Light LED Outdoor Wall Light by Maxim Lighting offers safety and style. Ideal for mounting on the walls near the pool area, it provides accent lighting that plays up architectural details, lights entryways into the home, and illuminates the space around the pool.

Spot Lights & Pathway Lights

Spotlights and pathway lights help people get around the backyard and up any stairs without tripping. They also accentuate garden features, ornamental plants, and architectural details of the home. Although unassuming, in their supporting role, they provide safety and beauty in equal measure.

Rex 21 Inch Decorative Pathway Light by Hinkley Lighting

The combination of Rex 21 Inch Decorative Pathway Light by Hinkley Lighting and spotlights creates a beautiful picture of this home and the backyard that surrounds it. The lighting design includes accent lighting, ambient lighting, and spotlights to make an overall pleasing glow and shed light where needed.


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