Outdoor lighting is one of those patio decor touches that can sometimes be overlooked. Relying on tiki torches and citronella candles is an absolute no-go when it comes to a successful summertime soirée. We’ve gathered a few lighting options to ensure those cozy summer evening gatherings under the stars use a little more than just moonlight to create the perfect summer vibe.

String Lights

Photo via The Garden Glove
  • Use string lights to create ambient overhead light–use over the dining table or a lounge area.
  • String or globe lights work best when strung between two fixed structures, like a detached garage and the house or another building in the back yard. If needed, you can construct a support to attach the ends of the lights to.
  • Heavier commercial grade lights will require a steel wire support so they don’t sag in the middle. This is a great tutorial with instructions on how to hang these types of lights!


Photo via House & Home
  • Lanterns are great for smaller accents of light–you can use real or battery powered candles inside for an ambient look.
  • Use these around the lounge or place within the garden–just be sure they are out of the way from any active walkways!
  • Choose lanterns in a few different heights to give the arrangement a little visual interest.

Need a little outdoor lighting inspo? Shop our favorite string light and outdoor lanterns to light your patio in style, including some of these patio-perfect products: