Outdoor Room Ambience: Globe String Lights!


Last weekend Steve had the idea that it was time to add globe lights to the back patio. Especially since we were starting to see them on clearance in the garden section of just about everywhere. And, according to Rachel, my teenager least likely to be found in the garden… it was the coolest thing we have done outside yet. The globe lights just keep making me feel like we’re sitting outside an Airstream on vacation in 1955. Or at a cool urban outdoor restaurant. Or in Austin. Convinced? We purchased two strings of globe lights from Target at less than $15, and strung them to our roof edge and back to the support poles for our shade sails. Yea, I think Austin… ;)

So be inspired!

We actually want to start you off with a DIY tutorial… In the case you don’t have already existing supports, ‘Bright July’ shows you how to make some easy support poles for globe lights. Now that you have this down, the rest is pure inspiring!




This next idea is from ‘The Haystack Needle‘, and goes to show you can get that sweet European restaurant flavor even if your outdoor space is a small alleyway. Or maybe especially because it’s a small alleyway!



From ‘Apartment Therapy‘, this lovely cottage in So Cal wraps the globe lights through a rustic overhang, and makes them even more charming than on their own.



Use just a couple of strands of globe lights over an eating area… takes the dining area  away from anything related to boring, especially for an evening cocktail or cup of tea.



From ‘Brick and Mortar‘, this is another example of how you can use globe lights in a small space, and make big impact.



From a backyard makeover from ‘Hometalk‘, this backyard space would not be the same without these lights. Don’t believe me? Cover the top of the photo, then uncover… see?



From Beth at ‘Local Milk‘, who, btw, has won numerous awards for her food and photography blog (Visit! Amazing!)… these are again a great example of how simplicity works with these lights… you don’t need some big display like Christmas on steroids… And you don’t have to just use them up above! Line a porch railing or deck with them… use creativity!




Finally, from Pinterest, this is one last bit of inspiration. So go find globe string lights!


Image Credits: Bright July, Haystack Needle, Apartment Therapy, Brick and Mortar, Hometalk, Local Milk, Pinterest



  1. Always wanted to do this for my front and back yards…are the lights waterproof. Didn’t want to have to keep taking them back down. As we have a lot of rain here.
    Thanks for the great post. The pictures are very inspiring.

  2. Hi! Just saw this on Pinterest and I had to let you know we’ve had them up in our backyard for years! Really – at least 4 years and we’ve never taken them down. True, we are in California, but we do have a wee bit of freezing temperatures, but no snow. We have them ringing the perimeter of most of our yard. (I need to add a few more!) It adds such a romantic ambience outside. Love them! Great post!

  3. whuch lights did you purchase?

  4. We had some globe lights and I loved them. But they filled with water and the glass broke during our Indiana winter.

  5. Love all these ideas. Also really like the succulent “gardens” hanging on the fence in the one picture. Any idea how they were made?

  6. Did u use clear or frosted bulbs.. which is better for outside?

    • Kathy Woodard says:

      We used clear, we just like the retro feeling from them!Plus, its a more “sparkly” light, which is really nice in the evening…

  7. Anne Hudspeth says:

    We had ours strung along a path to our waterfall.. And then the squirrels chewed them one by one.. It was so sad and wierd that they liked electrical cords….

  8. Elizabeth Coit says:

    I’m sorry to say I tried these lights from Target’s with great expectations and found water in all of them (all globes , two strands) within two weeks. They were definitely rated for outdoors but they must have meant Arizona, not Maryland.

    • Kathy Woodard says:

      We didn’t have any trouble with them, except they seemed a little more fragile than some others we had seen. (You get what you pay for?) Anyone else had trouble with water in their light?

  9. I use solar light year around ! I live in New Hampshire. I buy them when they go on clea

  10. I use solar lights year around!! I live in New Hampshire so solar is really the way to go !! The light sparkles off the snow!! I also use battery lights which are on timer. What a feeling to see if you happen to come home after dark & to have all the light already on

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