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How to Select Lighting for Outdoor Living


A little outdoor lighting can transform your home into a real showpiece.
A little outdoor lighting can transform your home into a real showpiece.
Ivan Hunter/Getty Images

Designers on do-it-yourself TV shows make decorating look so easy. They slap some paint on the walls, add a few pillows and some strategic lighting, and they've effortlessly transformed a space. This is especially true for outdoor spaces, which, with the right design aren't just grass, some bushes, a grill and patio furniture; they're oases.

Having a well-designed outdoor space can turn your house into a home, adding curb appeal and even more value to its worth. Lighting plays an essential role in outdoor design, as it can have multiple functions: It adds beauty, acts as security and allows you to use your backyard well into the night. Even though lighting design in an outdoor space can seem tricky, you don't necessarily need the help of a designer to create a beautifully lit space.

The key to creating beautiful outdoor lighting is to plan ahead. First think about what purpose the lighting will serve. Whatever you choose should enhance the beauty of the property, so you'll want to look for lighting fixtures that blend in with the architectural style of your home.

Next, understand that different areas of your house may need different kinds of lighting depending on the function of the lights. A well-lit front entrance provides safety and security. Lighted paths give visitors clear access to the house, and a brightly lit front door allows you to be able to clearly identify them before letting them in. Lighting shadowy areas of your home, such as corners, provides more security and prevents people from sneaking around your home unnoticed.

Entertaining is a major reason to have a beautiful outdoor space, and outdoor rooms have become an essential part of the home. Good lighting allows you to take advantage of your outdoor space at night. Whether it's to cook, highlight features in your yard or add a touch of romance, lighting can instantly create the proper mood.

With so many different functions, of course there are a multitude of choices when it comes to selecting lights. Read on for more information about the different types of lights available today.


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