The tradition of putting up Christmas lights goes all the way back to the 17th century. European Christians would burn candles in their windows to let others know they could worship there.
Now, the tradition has made its way around the globe, and come the festive season, every suburb is awash in a sea of brilliant light.
Whether you’re just dipping your toes in the pool or you’re a seasoned outdoor Christmas decorating champion, we’re here to help you out.
Keep reading to learn how to plan, prepare, and put on your best display yet.
Planning Your Christmas Display
If you intend to put elaborate Christmas house decorations outside, you’ll need to make a plan in advance. You might have an image in your head of what you want your display to look like, but if not, an easy source of inspiration is to look at the other houses in your neighborhood.
Browsing online catalogs is another great source of inspiration. Remember that you will need to mark the day you intend to decorate in a calendar and finish your display in advance.
If anything goes wrong, you’ll have time to adjust, perform repairs, and purchase any additional equipment you need. And if you’re a sucker for tradition, Christmas displays are normally put up on the fourth Sunday before Christmas.
When planning, take the following points into account:
- Take pictures of your house from the outside
- Take a long look at your roof
- Examine your yard and driveway
- Think about power, poor weather, and safety
Snap a few photos and look at them on your smartphone. Think about the features of your house that you want to highlight, and spend a while examining your roof.
Does your roof have any overhangs or gutters to think about? Remember that you’ll need to be able to access your roof, hook up your outdoor Christmas light clips, and fix up your lighting safely.
Finally, remember that your Christmas light display will need a power source to operate. Make a mental note of where your exterior outlets are and try to approximate the distance between your outlets and your lighting displays – now is the time to dust off your box of extension cables and check that they’re still in working order.
Outdoor Christmas Decorating Made Simple
With your plan laid out, it’s time to order your supplies and get decorating. You may want to compare LEDs with incandescent lights, resort to vibrant and colorful displays, or go for that traditional cream-white look.
If you’re crafting a particularly large or elaborate display – or one that will remain installed for more than a month, you might want to consider commercial lighting solutions. Commercial Christmas lights are more durable and much bigger than residential options.
Christmas Lighting for Trees
Trees are great choices for a string of decorating Christmas lights if you have them in your front yard. It’s easy to wrap Christmas lights around branches and twigs, and the barren trees look fantastic when covered in sparkling lights.
There’s just something about a wintering tree covered in Christmas lights that gives a fuzzy, warm feeling in spite of the cold.
Consider wrapping trunks in elaborate lighting displays or grabbing a ladder to get at the branches to hang Christmas decor. Leave space for the display to “breathe” as you wrap light strings around the length of the branches up each tree.
Decorating Your Roof With Christmas Lights
Roof lighting stands out from a distance, and going to extra mile to cover your roofing in brilliant displays sets you apart from the crowd.
If you haven’t decorated your roof before, it’s best to start with a traditional white LED look. You won’t go wrong that way and your display will remain tasteful throughout the winter season – and the LEDs look great at night against the crisp, white snow.
Sprucing Up Your Windows
Windows sit at the right height to catch people’s attention, so you shouldn’t pass up the opportunity to fill them with festive Christmas light designs. The windows that face outwards, toward roads, are more important than those in your backyard – drivers and passers-by will share in the festive joy when they pass your house and see them.
A single string of lights around the edges adds a touch of subtlety, while giant snowflakes add a splash of winter-themed pop.
Easy Last-minute Decorations
Let’s face it – sometimes life gets in the way, or you start planning too late and look for easy outdoor Christmas lights you can put up at the last minute.
If that sounds like you, then start with a quick inventory of the lights you have available in your attic. If you come up scant, then turn to your immediate neighbors – the old hats who seem to have their displays ready before the first leaves fall probably have a spare set of lighting strings available.
Take a spare afternoon and walk around your house from the outside, making a mental plan. You’re looking for places to attach lights quickly, easily, and without needing to put up fixtures or hammer nails. Trees (see above) and bushes are still a great choice – they come with lots of natural fixtures to hold some lights.
With a bit of care and attention, nobody will notice you didn’t put up your Christmas decorations until the eleventh hour.
Looking for Christmas Lighting?
Is your brain lit up with ideas for outdoor Christmas decorating? Start drawing up your plans in advance, figure out what tools and lights you’ll need to see them through, and get decorating this festive season!
Need to find Christmas lighting for the festive season? At Lighting and Supplies, we supply a huge range of energy-efficient and safe lighting solutions for your needs. Click here to browse our catalog of Christmas lights.