Hygge, or hyggelig, is a Danish/Norwegian word that embodies everything we connect with “cosiness.” No longer a well-kept Scandinavian secret, the concept of creating a hyggelig atmosphere is spreading globally. And in Australia, the place we like to spend the most time, outdoors, is the one place that could use a lot more “hygge” in our lifestyle.

One of the easiest ways to create “hygge” for your next evening outdoor gathering is via the use of creative and soft lighting, to bring a great atmosphere. And the good news is, getting “hyggelig” does not mean you have to break the bank to achieve it.  We have prepared some great ideas for outdoor lighting.

1. Set the Mood with Candles

Not every light must be electric or solar, and what is more romantic or cosy than a candle?  Plain, scented, and bug-repelling candles in all sizes and colours make decorative and functional options that you can place on your table, around your deck , along walls, lining pathways.  Maybe not your best bet on a windy night, but we have a fix for that too.

2. Keeping it Simple with Solar Stakes

Solar lights on stakes are versatile and effortless.  Watch them light up as the sun sets.  Use them anywhere around your yard that needs light.  Place them around trees and decorative plants, so you can enjoy them in the evening as well as during the day.  Perfect for pathways and driveways as an added safety feature, too.

Don’t forget what you are standing on!  Deck lighting is versatile and practical as well as decorative. They’re used for safety purposes, along deck edges, pathways, steps, railings and used to highlight special architectural features, as well as pools, spas and fountains. Placed strategically, LED deck lights can enhance the ambience of any area, horizontally and vertically.

3. Light Up with LED’s

And as with the above lighting suggestions, outdoor LED deck lights, such as the deck lighting kits from OWLIA, are easy for the DIY-er to install.  Coupled with the optional dimmer switch, these LED Deck lights suddenly become more than just a functional outdoor feature…  Want something subtle and romantic?  Dim them down.  Very “hyggelig”!

4. Charm with Chinese Lanterns

Decorative, functional and much more festive than plain strings of naked party lights. The only concern about where to hang these will depend on whether your lanterns are made from paper or metal.  Colourful paper Chinese lanterns provide beautiful lighting under a protected patio or pergola area, and the more robust metal lanterns can be hung from trees and uncovered areas in your garden. 

5. Marvellously Moroccan

Bring exotic flavour to your backyard with Moroccan lanterns.  Available in many sizes, shapes and colours, these grillwork lanterns can be hung anywhere. Place them on your steps to light the way.  Place them between potted plants on your verandah.  There is no area in your garden that cannot be improved with the addition of these beautiful lanterns. Cosy the space with floor rugs and colourful eastern cushions to complete the look.

6. Dazzle with Dainty Fairy Lights

Grab those empty jars again and this time fill them with fairy lights!  You can place these anywhere.  They are so pretty you will want to add them to your table to not only shed light on your culinary masterpieces but add something special that will adorn your table perfectly with their gentle glow. 

7. Banish the Gloom with Grapevine Balls

Grapevine balls look amazing strung up around trees and hanging from gazebos or any special part of your garden you want a natural or Eden-like effect.  You can buy them ready-made or make your own grapevine balls and fill them with twinkling fairy lights.  Your friends will be green with envy… which will also blend nicely with your grapevine balls!

8. Twinkle Twinkle Little Tree

Why wait until Christmas?  Grab those sparkling little fairy lights and wrap your favourite trees from the bottom up to where the branches start.  Not only will this provide extra light, but the visual effect is also stunning and will be a real eye-catcher at your next evening BBQ!

9. Are you Sure you Want to Throw That Out?

I had an old piano once that was good only for the tip, but it was saved at the last minute by becoming an interesting patio piece to display plants, ornaments and candles. So, look around you. That old trellis whose plant died long ago can be rejuvenated and come to life at night covered with fairy lights.  That old timber ladder nobody uses? 

Rope it up between the trees and hang lanterns and party lights from it!  That wheelbarrow with the flat tyres that’s too big and clumsy to use any more?  Plant pretty flowers in it and add some dainty solar lights for effect. That rusty old watering can you don’t use?  Hang it in your garden with overflowing fairy lights, depicting sparkling water falling on the plants below… This takes recycling to a whole new level!

 10. Titillate With Tiki Torches

If you’re going for the tropical, Bali, or jungle effect, don’t forget the tiki torches!  The beauty of these does not only do you have an effective outdoor lighting method, but their bug repellent ability will help keep uninvited biting visitors away.  Place them out in the garden among the bushes and ferns.  You can never have too many!

11. Ramp It Up with Rope Lights

These perfect, all-weather light systems can be used anywhere at any time.  So, if you have an area that is exposed to the elements, the wind and the rain, you’re in luck.  You can snake these rope lights around poles, along with pergolas, fences balconies, or curve them along the ground, lighting up paths.  Some creative people place them in hollow logs and allow the light to shine through the crevices. 

In fact, any form of string lighting, plain or coloured, has the power to transform even the dullest area into a whimsical, magical, “hyggelig” wonderland. You can wind them around and through pergolas, gazebos, trellises, trees, fences… the only limit is your imagination.  Ugly concrete patio by day?  Magical, romantic, dance floor by night!  Be adventurous and team them with other outdoor lighting options for a magical ambience you will enjoy all year round.

12. Jam Jars or…

Recycle your odd-sized, plain and coloured glass jars to use as candleholders.  Mason jars are perfect for this!  You can place them anywhere you want to cast a little light and add a touch of “hygge”.  Use different shaped, sized and coloured jars and mix them up for a colourful Bohemian effect.

So there you have it; our top tips on how to use outdoor lighting to transform your backyard into a ‘hygge’ sanctuary.

If you need to Light up your outdoor area with safe, energy-saving LED lights, contact us.

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