You know what they say: Summertime... and the livin' is easy. Is there anything more enchanting than an evening garden party lit by a few sparkling lights? Sitting outside enjoying good food and good wine with good friends while the sun goes down is near the top of my "Things That Make Life Great" list. Unless you prefer to talk in the dark, some atmospheric outdoor lighting is probably in order. Here are a few of our favorite picks:
1 Mason Jar Lanterns: Yes, you can buy these, but why not just make your own with this tutorial? Their affordability means you can hang a ton of them for some serious atmospheric lighting.
2 David Stark Outdoor String Lights, $24.99 from West Elm: These shades are made of seagrass, and I like their rustic whimsicality.
3 Christian Bjørn for Menu Lighthouse Oil Lamps, $89 from Huset: Functional, beautiful, and durable, these heavy porcelain ceramic lamps can be used inside or outside. And as the name hints, the patented oil burner keeps the flame lit even in rough weather, much like a lighthouse.
4 Soji Illume Solar Outdoor Lanterns, $29.99 from Allsop Home and Garden: these luminescent paper-like solar lanterns are actually made of lightweight nylon. The solar panel collects sun all day and then lights up at night. (There are also LED lights and an AAA rechargeable battery in case you don't get enough sun!)
5 Recycled Wine Bottle Torch, a DIY project for $5: Well, we love wine, we love candles, and we love outdoor lighting, so this project is pretty much right up our alley. Start saving your pretty bottles!
6 Candela Lights, $39-$129 from Vessel: these portable rechargeable LED lights provide a warm, ambient glow that won't blow out in the wind, or set the house on fire if they're left unattended!
7 Aurora Glow Solar LED String Lights, $56.95 from Green Depot: Each one of these handblown glass balls are powered by a white LED, but the set also comes with a 5"x5" solar panel that can charge the lights during the day and light them by night.
8 Egyptian Ceramic Lanterns, $35-$79 from Viva Terra: designed and created by women, these ceramic, bulb-shaped lanterns draw inspiration from Islamic design.
9 Mini Garden Torch Lights, $28 from Terrain: Made in Switzerland, this set of four miniature garden torches are made of Cidrenho hardwood from Brazilian plantations that use responsible replanting programs.
10 Pleated String lights, $174 from Perch: okay, so these are not under $100. But we're such big fans (I picked them as my Daily Find last week), that I thought it'd be worth putting in one aspirational piece. This set of ten unglazed shades are cast ultra thin for translucency. They'd be so pretty strung around a terrace.
(Images: Top image Jasmine Fitzwilliam via Flickr, found via The Sweetest Occasion and used with permission. All other images as linked)