8 Bright Ways to Decorate with String Lights

published Jul 10, 2019
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A row of glittery, glistening string lights are not only inexpensive and easy to use, but they also have the power to transform any humdrum nook into a sparkly sanctuary in seconds. 

Looking for a way to make your outdoor and indoor spaces shine this summer? From ceilings draped in LED lights to shimmering outdoor patios, here are eight illuminating ways to dress up your home with string lights.

1. Dinner Al Fresco

Turn an al fresco dining area into a glittering outdoor scene by suspending a strand or two of string lights. This dining nook on Isabelle and Brandon’s property looks more like a beautiful bistro than a casual, California backyard.

2. Chic Ceilings

Searching for a stunning way to warm up a lofty living room? Take a cue from this Los Angeles loft and cover your tall ceilings with a web of loose string lights to create an ambient glow. Now here’s what we call a warm welcome!

3. Cozy Corners

Attention all small space dwellers: We have the lighting solution for you. If you’re working with a tiny balcony, hang a few strands of string lights above a comfy chair. The result, as seen in Lauren Svenstrup’s Chicago apartment, is equal parts cozy and chic.

4. Wondrous Windows

When it comes to zhuzh-ing up your windows, it pays to think outside of the box. In Kim Mahair’s West Hollywood home, a window simply framed by string lights makes for a surprisingly chic kitchen display. 

5. Starry Nights

Credit: Cathy Pyle

Why waste your energy on nightlights or table lamps when you can have some string lights? Instead of traditional bedside lighting, hang a strand of string lights above, as seen in Laurie Penny’s UK bedroom

6. A Bright Idea

Very few things can cramp your summer style like an awkward exterior wall you’re not sure how to decorate. Dress up a rugged wall with a set of string lights to soften your outdoor space in style, just like we saw in Jynne Dilling Martin & Louie Saletan’s Brooklyn backyard

7. Party City

Nothing screams “lounge area” quite like a ceiling strewn in string lights. Hang a couple of strands above an indoor or outdoor lounge area—like in this Chicago loft—to show guests exactly where the party’s at.

8. Outdoor Oasis

Porches need design love, too! Line the rails or posts of your front porch with string lights to instantly brighten up the space. The design trick creates some serious curb appeal for this Portland, Oregon home