Use the Best Garden Lighting for the Task – Because You Have Choices
In the day, my garden is a delight but once the sun sets, so does my outdoor life and it’s time for that to end. I’m throwing a party this summer and I’m going with a “Worlds Worst Ever Festival of Karaoke”. Most people think that I just want to humiliate my friends by highlighting their really bad singing and that is a part of it, but what’s even better is that now I can finally go crazy and get all the garden lights that I’ve been lusting after for the last few years.
You see, garden lighting is more than just lights. Its a way to set up a mood at night and transition from different parts of the yard. Are you familiar with the concept of garden rooms? It’s an especially effective way to design small gardens to seem bigger than they are and I can use the same idea with the lighting, at night and define different areas with a different type of lighting.
First of all you can use lights to literally move traffic and in the case of a party or guests coming over, start with how you light the path. There are some very cool choices. I love solar path lights – frankly they’ve come such a long way from the first unreliable versions that I don’t know why anyone would ever think of anything else. But now you can also choose between white light – or a white light and spot lights to solar lights that change color. I’ll use white closer to the front of the house and hide my new colored lights in the back.
As far as I’ve noticed the solar powered path lights that change color are new this year. By changing colour I don’t mean that you can set them to a different colour and they stay that way – although that is actually an option, but the real “magic” is that they can dynamically move though different stops on the spectrum for a constantly changing picture.
Another exceptionally cool variation on the colour changing path lights are garden lights that are simply globes. You can roll them around on the yard, or use the handy table top stands or – best of all- they float! So if you’d like some floating, colour changing lights in your pool or pond – it is your lucky day! Set in front of your summer house or log cabin transforms these delightful buildings.
One of the best things about my party and all the lights I’m going to get is that finally I can go crazy on outdoor candle lanterns. I know they’ve been around for a while, but there are simply so many awesome designs to those from. Since I’m free to set up them around all the tables and hang a few from some very strategically located hooks and the odd branch I can choose between iron and clear glass, iron and mosaic glass and some particularly nice looking pressed and crackle glass lanterns in fuchsia, amber, dark green, turquoise and another shade of pale celery.
For the kids seating area – candle lanterns are not a good idea. Many people have an aversion to placing kids and flames in close proximity and for a lot of good reason. At first I was a little stumped, but a little bit of searching uncovered another really great type of lighting that’s perfect. You can get sets of 4 flame less votive candles. Actually anywhere that you have to deal with kids or pets or want the look of a votive candle indoors – these are simply the best idea I’ve found.
I love being able to live outside in the summer and I spend hours in my garden every week, not just to make it look good for others, but really- because it’s what I love to do. While a lot of my efforts are lost when people are over in the evening, when I can add some really interesting lighting to the garden, everything “pops” even at night. If the guest of honor takes are real shine (no pun intended) to some of the lights – maybe I’ll donate them as a wedding present.