Are you ready to start decorating for the holidays? Nothing makes it easier to get into the holiday spirit than twinkling Christmas lights. And if you’re trying to figure out what lights you need — and where to put them — you’ve come to the right place.
Read on to learn everything you need to know about shopping for Christmas lights!
Know the Background of Christmas Lights
Christmas trees first came into being in 1885 thanks to the efforts of Edward H. Johnson. His Christmas lights consisted of twinkling globes that were hand-wired around a tree. But the first commercially-available lights didn’t emerge until 5 years later.
Initially, Christmas lights were too expensive for most people. Additionally, lights required a wiring technician to install them — and access to electricity. Having lights on display was an indication of wealth.
It wasn’t until the 1930s that Christmas lighting design became an attainable decoration option. And then in the 1950s, lights became a more regular part of the seasonal decor. Fast forward to the present day, and it’s surprising not to see lights lining houses and trees during December!
Consider Your Lighting Priorities
With so many lighting options today, you’ll want to consider what type of seasonal ambiance you’re trying to create first. Are you trying to channel a retro vibe with bigger bulbs and warmer colors? Or do you want a cleaner look that only features white lights?
Look at different bulb shapes and color options. Consider swapping out the regular lightbulb of a kitchen pendant light in favor of a sparkling green bulb that will provide festive cheer. As another option, add lights to a wreath or garland for a classy bit of warmth.
And, of course, do some measuring where you plan to hang or wrap lights. That way, you’ll be able to purchase the right number of stringers for your needs.
Compare LEDs With Incandescent Lights
You may remember using incandescent lights to decorate your home for Christmas as a kid. Incandescent bulbs emit a warm glow that may make you think of happy memories. But when it comes to energy efficiency, it’s hard to top LED light bulbs.
LED lights have become the norm in recent years for Christmas tree lights and outdoor displays. That’s because they offer a brighter bulb type of illumination that won’t use up as much energy. On top of that, the plastic bulbs of LED lights are less prone to breaking than the glass bulbs associated with incandescent lights.
Incandescent lights are becoming harder to find because of this. But with so many color options, including warmer whites that mimic retro lights, you’re bound to find the right look with LED lights.
Look at Different Size Lights
Christmas tree lights come in various sizes, so spend time considering which sizes complete the look you want. Mini lights can be a good solution for small or intricate displays. For instance, if you’re displaying small caroler figurines or a vintage Santa, encircle them with some mini string lights.
C9 bulbs are larger, meaning they tend to have a more retro look. If you’re trying to channel a little nostalgia, the bigger the better. Net lights and tree lights make lighting a breeze when you’re trying to tackle bushes or columns.
And if you have a front porch or prominent roof line, go with icicle string lights. You’ll simulate the look of icicles and add a playful wintery touch to your property.
Determine Where to Place Lights
Are you hoping to greet guests with lights looped around your front railing? Or are you only looking for indoor Christmas tree lights? Before you start shopping, make a list of where you plan to put your lights to make a festive atmosphere come to life.
For instance, you could use a tree or net wrap to highlight tree trunks in your front yard. Net lights also work well on bushes, and you can use tree wrap lights on pillars flanking your front door.
Strings of lights work best to line doors or windows. And if you’re confident enough to try illuminating your roofline, you’ll want to measure the length so you get enough stringers.
Choose the Right Color
One of your biggest decisions when it comes to Christmas decor is the color of the lights you put up. White lights offer a clean and classic look that can suit any type of home, even minimalistic ones! Wrap them around evergreens on a mantle or the banister of your staircase.
Go with blue lights for a quieter, more subdued approach. A single tree adorned with blue lights can add elegance to a front yard. Green, purple, and other single-color stringers also can create a festive vibe.
Or, for a little more fun, try multi-color bulbs. Add these to the bushes outside, or string them up around the breakroom for a holiday party at work. You’ll love sitting by a Christmas tree and watching the lights twinkle and project beautiful colors on the walls.
Know the Answers to Common Christmas Lights Questions
You may be wondering what will happen if one bulb goes out in a string — especially if you just spent hours installing it! The good news is that LED Christmas lights will keep going strong, even if one bulb or string stops working.
You’ll also be happy to know that LED lights don’t get too hot. Not only are they more efficient than incandescent bulbs, but they’re also able to stay cool. So, if you’re using LED Christmas tree lights, you can feel safe putting them up indoors where kids and pets may find them.
Start Planning Your Christmas Decor
Putting up Christmas lights will transform your home into a cheerful space where you’ll be happy to create new seasonal memories. Determine where you want to place your lights and which style of light and color will create the atmosphere you envision. And look to the history of Christmas lights for some inspiration.
When you’re ready to get the right lights for your Christmas decor, contact us so we can help!