outdoor decorating ideas

9 Outdoor Decorating Ideas to Light Up Your Life This Fall

22 October, 2015

As the temperatures drop, you may find yourself wandering outside in a cozy sweater trying to soak in autumn’s essence. And no one will blame you.

Fall is a wonderful time of year and it beckons many of us outside for the last few weeks of temperate weather before the snow begins to fall.

If you find yourself slinking outside to breathe in the falling leaves, you might want to add an extra level of magic to your outdoor space. These outdoor decorating ideas will help you add some simple lights to transform your backyard into an eerie asylum or rustic retreat, and you’ll get the most out of the space this fall.

1. Trade Bright Lights for Tea Lights

To add some ambiance to your patio, get rid of that harsh wall light and instead sprinkle the space with small tea lights. By spreading out the light source, instead of shining one bright spotlight, your space will glow warmly.

Because it can get windy in the fall, opt for battery-powered tea lights. They will last longer and you won’t have to worry about getting up to relight them every time the wind picks up.

2. Tinted String Lights Offer Variety

String lights, like those hung at Christmas, provide great ambient light, and they are designed to handle the weather so you don’t have to worry about wind and rain as the seasons change.

Trade out bright white or colored lights for tinted string lights. Brown or orange-tinted bulbs will give your patio a nice glow. String lights are easy to hang and they can go almost anywhere. Line them along a table, over the doorway, or on your overhang for some extra aminance in your outside space.

3. Try Flickering Candlesticks

To create some lighted accessories for your backyard, reach for LED candlesticks. You can easily make all kinds of cool arrangements with these and place them around your patio for a moody setting.

You can paint the candlesticks to have whimsical patterns in fall colors or be dark and spooky for a haunted backyard theme. Make sure the lights flicker for the added element of atmosphere that comes from a burning candle.

4. Intertwine Lighted Garland

To add extra ambiance to fall decorations you already have, wrap them with bendable lighted garland. The small lights add a twinkling effect to anything they’re around, which can complete your magical outdoor space.

Wrap the lighted garland around wreathes, other hanging lights, or your patio arbor for simple, yet elegant lighting that will completely change your backyard design.

5. Illuminate Your Space with Globe Lights

Globe lights add an eclectic feel to any backyard space. You can string them across the yard, along the house, or in between branches for a unique, quaint atmosphere.

To take your globe lights to the next level, get them orange tinted or surround them with paper lanterns. This will break up the light so that it is more muted, adding to your backyard’s ambiance.

6. Candles Galore

Although LED candles are great, nothing can emanate the warm glow of fire like real candles. Use a variety of sizes and colors to decorate your yard and gather them in clusters around the patio.

When you really want to illuminate your surroundings — perhaps for outdoor dining — light the candles and watch the shadows created by their light dance around the backyard. You can also put the candles in patterned tins or paper lanterns as party decorations or just for your own outdoor enjoyment.

7. Perfect Pumpkin Lanterns

Fully embrace the season by using its signature foods to help illuminate your backyard. Carved out pumpkins, or even gourds, with candles inside make for perfect decorations and offer a little bit of that signature orange light that characterizes autumn.

You don’t need to carve out scary faces to get the right effect. Simple patterns punched out with a screwdriver can create an attractive display that isn’t too focused on Halloween.

8. Add Creative Paper Lanterns

Create some additional ambiance by adding paper lanterns to your outdoor lights. White lanterns reflect the surrounding light, giving your patio a gentle glow. Or reach for colored lanterns that will add some tint to your outdoor space.

You can buy lanterns for fairly cheap, or build your own to get custom patterns and colors that match your outdoor decorations. To really capture the autumn atmosphere, choose colors that match the falling leaves like warm oranges, muted browns, and deep reds.

9. Utilize Bare Branches

To complete your autumn sanctuary, capitalize on classic fall features in nature. Falling leaves, autumn harvest, and bare branches are perfect companions to your fall lighting.

Bring the iconic look of leave-less branches into your autumn design by draping them with amber lights or pulsating candles in mason jars. The part spooky, part familiar essence of the bare trees will really make your backyard feel like fall.


Whichever of these outdoor decorating ideas you choose to for your backyard design, have fun with your fall decorations. Creating a special space in your backyard will make those cozy sweaters and warm cups of coffee that much more enjoyable.