There is little more impactful when it comes to your landscape design strategy than landscape lighting. Whether you are looking to simply illuminate your backyard for those summer barbeques or use lighting in a more functional way to improve home security, knowing how and what lights to choose is essential. Here are six landscape lighting tips and tricks we couldn’t live without.
- First things first, familiarize yourself with the functions of lighting: Overall Lighting (for the whole space), Task Lighting (for one specific purpose, i.e. path lighting) and Accent Lighting (for a specific area or object). Then begin to think about the type of lighting. Did you know there are many different types of lighting? They include: up-lighting, silhouetting, shadowing, moon lighting, grazing, washing and path lighting and each will have a completely different impact on the way your property looks from the outside, and from the inside. Try to imagine a look that is unique and beautiful around your own property, and can help make your best features (like that big old oak tree, or beautiful vine wall) stand out.
- Set your design intention. Are you hoping to create a romantic mood in your backyard pergola, improve your home security and safety, reduce energy costs or simply create a glow in front of your home for aesthetic reasons? Maybe you are looking to do it all! Knowing exactly what your needs are is essential when you begin to price out and shop for your lighting fixtures. Do you want ambient lighting, wall lighting, pathway lights, deck lights, security lights, LED candles or huge spotlights on your house? Time to start scrolling Pinterest to see what makes you swoon.
- Now, calculate your lighting needs. Michael Murphy, who is a renowned interior designer for Lamps Plus suggests that, “to determine how much light a space requires, try this quick calculation: multiply the square footage of the area you want to light by 1.5 to get a rough estimate of the total wattage required,” he says. “For example, 100 square feet of space would require 150 watts.”
- Next, set your budget. A simple set of string lights can create an incredible ambience and is doable on a budget. Once you know what your hard spending limit it, then you can get to work on purchasing your lights as per your design strategy.
- Shop around! Lights are almost always on sale somewhere, so stay tuned to flyers, online sales and even craigslist and Kijiji for affordable and incredible lighting options.
- Save the Environment! When choosing your lighting, if you opt for LED lights you are not only drastically reducing your energy use, but you also are drastically reducing your own stress – as you hardly ever need to maintain LED bulbs.
With these six tips, you are well on your way to designing a beautiful property using landscape lighting. If you have questions, want design ideas, or are looking to outsource your landscape lighting project, call our team today for a quote!