Outdoor Decor: Ideas For Your Patio

by Wendy Mills 1 Comment

patio lightsDesigning a comfortable and smartly decorated patio is like having a whole new room added to your house. Even with limited space and a tight budget, you can turn a boring slab of wood or concrete into a stylish outdoor living space that’s inviting in every season.

We took a look at a few popular ideas for how to use lighting and vertical space to enhance your patio area that don’t require any major building or rewiring. Here are our favorites:

Lighting Ideas

Hanging Porch Lanterns come in several styles, and can be affixed to your deck’s walls or posts with a basic screw hook. Most people prefer ambient (indirect) light for outdoor spaces, and these fixtures are prefect for brightening up the outer edges of your patio.

Bistro Lights are trendier than ever these days, with their cascading globes adding a touch of simple sophistication to your deck area. They can be hung vertically, but they are more frequently strung along the ceiling or affixed to a patio umbrella to create overhead lighting.  

Curtain Lights are similar to bistro lights, but the bulbs themselves tend to be smaller, on a series of strands intended to be draped vertically. These make a great addition to holiday decor, or as a permanent light source for your patio.

Mason Jar Lights actually offer a variety of creative options. Some choose to stuff an entire strand of lighting into the jar, creating the playful appearance of fireflies. Others cut a hole into the lids and insert multi-color Christmas bulbs. For either of these, just be sure you’re using LED lights, so the glass doesn’t overheat! 

A more nuanced option is to fill the jars halfway with water, on which to float tea light candles. The water helps diffuse the heat, and a large bag of tea lights is conveniently inexpensive. Whichever variation you choose, you can hang them along the eave of your deck  or hook them to the posts for a more “countrified” style of lighting.

Rope Lighting is different than other string lights, as the bulbs are encased within clear tubing. Hang them anywhere you please, or string them along the base of your patio as ground lighting. This makes for an attractive accent to your overall decor, and it offers a measure of safety as well.  

Vertical Space

Old Ladders can easily be dressed up as narrow shelving to spruce up smaller patios. Potted plants, candles, mason jar lights, and cute outdoor chachkies can be placed on the rungs. Set it securely against an exterior wall or fix it to a post, and get as creative as you want!

Wicker Baskets are both lightweight and weatherproof, is they’re easy to attach to a wall,beam, or post. Either hang them from the eave like a flowerpot, or turn a few square ones sideways to be used as tiny shelves. 

Slat Walls can be made from leftover wood planks to accent the perimeters or exterior wall of your patio. Make sure there’s an inch or so of space between the slats. This allows you to accessorize by hanging small flower pots, jar lights, and wind chimes between the boards.

Curtains are an easy addition to your patio, and a great way to add shade when the sun is low in the sky. Simply add a couple of rods along the outer beams, and pick out a set of waterproof curtains to hang. 

Trellises make for a beautiful partial barrier along the edge of your patio, and they can be as tall or as wide as you’d like. Stake it into the ground and plant a fast-growing vine beneath it, to create a lush wall of foliage. 

Final Thoughts

Redecorating your patio can feel just as refreshing as renovating a room inside your home- but without all the mess of construction! A few stylish lighting fixtures and some clever vertical decor can revitalize your outdoor space and renew your family’s desire to spend more quality time in the fresh air and sunlight.

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Comment ( 1 )

  1. ReplyJane
    Yes, yes, yes! You are a godsend. I didn't want to spend too much on patio decor from those bought from the store knowing I could DIY it and thankfully I found your blog on this. Outdoor lighting is something I really appreciate as it sets a good ambience for an outdoor night party in your own patio. These patio decorations are great ideas and I love that mason jar one in particular. I will definitely be trying these out soon.

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