11 Ways to Decorate with Outdoor String Lights

Light up your yard any time of year—these dreamy ways with string lights add instant ambience

Jess Chamberlain
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Connect spaces

Weave together outdoor rooms by stringing cafe lights overhead between fence posts and trees.

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Light a wreath

Group strands of lights to cover sections of a wire wreath frame, attaching with zip ties to the back of the frame. Here, three strands of 25-count lights cover a 12-inch frame. Plug your light wreath into an extension cord and see your garden fence in a whole new light. PRO TIP: Using clear and/or frosted bulbs means your decor project will look great year-round--not just at Christmastime.

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Create a vignette

Accent a lush garden wall with a single draping strand of globe lights to signify an event space that begs to be photographed.

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Create boundaries

For evening entertaining on a deck or balcony, hang lights along fencing to define the perimeter of the party area. (As the sun goes down, the lights serve as a safety measure too.)

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Add starlight

Hang string lights from wall to wall above an outdoor room to create an intimate starlight glow.

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Illuminate a chandelier

Wrap string lights around a thin oversized wreath and suspend in your outdoor dining area for a twinkling ambiance.

More: How to make a rustic outdoor chandelier like this one using branches and trimmings you might otherwise have thrown away

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Make it intimate

Make a grand outdoor space feel cozy--even enchanting--by creating a canopy of string lights overhead. As the daylight glow fades to night sky, the string lights softly illuminate the space.

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Enchant your garden

Tuck strings of globe lights under cloches to create lanterns along a garden path. (Creating or improving garden pathways is easier than you think.)

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Frame an outdoor space

String light strands along the roof perimeter of an outdoor room to accent party space. Here, lights glow against the redwood slats of an outdoor bar in a backyard retreat.

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Set a smokeless fire

Drape a battery-powered strand of small string lights over a pile of wooden logs for a fire pit glow any time of year. Here, copper-wire lights illuminate stacked wooden logs.

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Divide a room

Hang string lights at ceiling height to define separate spaces in the yard. Chose colored bulbs to add dimension and style.



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