Patio Lighting

Get the scoop on patio lighting options, and browse tips and pictures for inspiration.


Exterior of house with outdoor patio lighting and the reflection bouncing off the pool water.

Photo by: Jupiterimages


A patio can be a great addition to any home or outdoor living space, and adding patio lighting can extend the use of a patio into the evening hours, making it a useful gathering place any time of day or night, year-round.

Your options for patio lighting are just about limitless, but there are some key things to keep in mind as you consider how you'll illuminate your outdoor living space.

15 Outdoor Rooms for Entertaining

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A Charming Spot for Outdoor Dining

Rustic furniture pieces add warmth to an intimate backyard setting, while antique lighting allows guests to visit even after the sun sets. For those who enjoy the smoky flavors of a delicious homemade pizza, consider a brick wood-burning pizza oven. Photo courtesy of Wood Stone Kopke

Photo By: Sandy Koepke, Wood Stone

An Oceanfront Escape

An ideal outdoor room is all about flow from the interiors. The oversize windows and the large opening to the balcony create an exotic staycation in a weather-controlled space. Photo courtesy of Kichler Lighting

An Outdoor Room for Fireside Chats

Outdoor fireplaces create a strong focal point in outdoor rooms, and they provide warmth for those cool evenings in the mountains. Photo courtesy of Mega-Bergerac

Photo By: Chipper Hatter

Lakeside Living

Sometimes all you need is a stone fire pit, two Adirondack chairs and a lake view. For a completely natural look, nothing beats stone. Keep in mind, natural stone costs more because it is quarried and has to be trucked in, adding transportation costs. Photo courtesy of Mega-Arbel

Photo By: Chipper Hatter

Outdoor Dining With a View

This outdoor dining room offers a year-round entertaining experience with a breathtaking view. When deciding on location for your outdoor room, consider how you want to use it. Photo courtesy of Gloster Furniture Inc.

Photo By: Gloster Furniture Inc.

Lounge-Worthy in the Backyard

Plush seating is a must-have in any outdoor room. Make sure you pick weather-resistant materials for long-lasting use. Photo courtesy of Kichler Lighting

Photo By: Kichler Lighting

An Intimate Gathering Place

Walls, a ceiling and a fireplace create a distinctive living room outdoors. Layer in mood lighting with eye-catching fixtures and lanterns. Photo courtesy of Kichler Lighting

Photo By: Kichler Lighting

Poolside Play

An umbrella is a great option to shade your outdoor living spaces. Also, consider awnings, canopies and gazebos to keep your guests comfortable on sunny days. Photo courtesy of Room and Board

Photo By: Room & Board

Southwestern Retreat

Personalize your space with flair. This rustic outdoor room by Jamie Durie is complete with a branch chandelier, flagstone flooring, a patterned rug and an antique.

Pops of Color

While gray stone is a classic hue for an outdoor space, add pops of interest with colorful accessories. When picking your furniture pieces, look for synthetic wicker for more durability. Photo courtesy of Mega-Arbel

Photo By: Chipper Hatter

Courtyard Dining

A full-service outdoor kitchen and dining area invites a crowd. In a sheltered backyard, large French doors with transom windows above can provide access while allowing natural light into your home.

Photo By: DianePadys

A Grand Retreat

Provide plenty of seating options for your guests. This outdoor room features a plush couch, a built-in bench and a dining area for optimal gathering. Photo courtesy of Marrokal Design and Remodeling

Photo By: Marrokal Design and Remodeling

Simply Chic

Turn your dull concrete slab into a fabulous backyard focal point with a clean mix of color. To define the space, face some seats toward your house. Photo courtesy of Room and Board

Contemporary Outdoor Dining

To add structure to the space, Jamie Durie added walls covered with scented herbs and fruit.

Photo By: Jamie Rector

Outdoor Destination

Greenery adds softness to a hardscaped outdoor design. Choose plants that are well-suited to your area and give them plenty of room to thrive in big pots. Browse images from Bassenian Lagoni Architects on ProGalleries

The first consideration is size. If you've got an expansive patio, you may want to focus your energy on outdoor lighting kits. These can be as simple as a few lights connected to a timer, and as complex as multiple lighting stations that can stretch around an entire home. They're readily available at most home improvement stores in a wide range of styles and pricing tiers.

If, on the other hand, your patio is an intimate setting designed to entertain just a few guests, you may be able to get away with temporary lighting options like candles, kerosene lamps or string lights. These won't create as much illumination as an outdoor lighting kit, but they can suffice for a small space, and they can also be particularly charming.

Finally, you may also want to consider a solar-powered patio lighting scheme. These kits are not unlike other outdoor lighting setups, except for the fact that they use the sun's rays for their power. When the sun goes down, they switch on, creating a cost-efficient and attractive complement to your patio.

Before and After: Perfect Patio Design

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