How to Use Twinkle Lights in Your Home Decor All Year Long

Don’t relegate those gorgeous, glowing bulbs to the holiday storage box. Keep them sparkling year-round with these creative ideas.

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January 03, 2019
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Cool Constellation Artwork

Turn your favorite constellation or zodiac sign into modern art with this fun DIY. The budget-friendly project uses a strand of white twinkle lights to create a masterpiece that’s truly sparkling.

Twinkly Lanterns

When it comes to DIY decor, it doesn’t get much simpler (or cuter) than this. Skip the traditional candle, and toss a tangle of string lights into an empty lantern. Place anywhere you need some nighttime ambiance, whether it’s on the patio or in the living room.

Nursery Nightlight

Create a pretty nightlight for your little one by stuffing a paper lantern with a strand of holiday lights. The paper lantern helps diffuse light to produce a super-soft glow that’s perfect for baby.

Boho Patio

If there were a precise recipe for boho patio perfection, it would go something like this: First, add plenty of rattan, wicker and tassels. Then, toss in some playful colors and patterns. Mix together with some cool potted plants, and finish with several strands of string lights. My point? No recipe is complete without the final step, my friends.

Loft Lighting

Looking to turn a random nook or unused loft into a cozy snuggle spot? Twinkle lights — along with loads of pillows and soft blankets — are just what you need, and this 25-square-foot loft from Season 1 of HGTV’s Tiny Luxury proves it.

Swim Under the Stars

Nighttime swims just got way dreamier. While you can’t control the actual stars in the sky, you can control a strand of faux stars — which is why you must string twinkle lights above your swimming pool ASAP. Just be sure to use the outdoor, weatherproof variety.

Wreath Turned Chandelier

Upcycle your holiday lights and holiday wreath in one fell swoop with this genius idea. Simply wrap an old wire wreath form with battery-operated lights, hang with a bit of chain and voila! You have a fabulous chandelier and two less things to store in your overflowing holiday bins.

Restful Retreat

Make your favorite hideaway a little bit cozier with the addition of string lights. Whether it’s the porch off your master suite or the kids’ backyard tree house, twinkle lights add a sparkle that can’t be matched.

Makeshift Bar

Small space living often calls for creativity, and your bar is the perfect place to mix things up (pun intended). If you don’t have space for a bar cart, install shelves in an unused corner, and accentuate with twinkle lights.

Under Your Umbrella

Are you struggling to find proper lighting for your outdoor dining space? Patio umbrella, to the rescue! Simply hang lights around the perimeter to create overhead lighting in a snap.

From Bare to Beautiful

Say bye to blank walls with the help of string lights. Take a cue from designer Justin DiPiero, and hang them in a zigzag pattern to create the look of a sculptural installation.

Courtyard With Character

Something about twinkly, overhead lighting feels ultra-intimate. That’s why string lights work beautifully for small patios and enclosed courtyards. Here, lights hung overhead give the modern outdoor space a dose of personality.

Versatile Party Decor

Twinkle lights say, "party," no matter the time of year. They’re an excellent choice for any type of festive celebration. Try hanging them around your drink station or buffet line.

Pretty Porch

Make your back porch come to life with the addition of string lights. Since they provide an indirect glow, they pair well with more direct sources of lights, like pendants and sconces.

Brilliant Wine Storage

Illuminate your impressive wine collection with a strand of twinkle lights. It’s an easy way to turn a boring storage feature into an eye-catching focal point.

Instant Romance

An intimate spot for two is made all the more romantic with string lights twinkling above. They can be left off when not in use and turned on in a snap to instantly set the mood.

Canopy Whimsy

A sheer canopy laced with twinkle lights feels perfectly at home in a teen girl’s bedroom. The darling duo is whimsical and delicate without being juvenile or girly.

Glowing Gazebo

Need to illuminate a covered outdoor space? Nothing does the trick quite like twinkle lights. When outfitting a small space, use the lights sparingly to keep the look understated, like licensed contractor Josh Temple did here on DIY Network’s House Crashers.

Inspired Play Space

Elevate your kid’s play fort or teepee with twinkling lights. You’ll love the adorable addition, and they’ll love one more reason to use their imagination.

Outdoor Ambiance

Trees decked out in string lights aren’t just for the holidays. Consider wrapping a few trunks in your backyard to create instant ambiance with the flip of a switch. Turn them on when you’re relaxing or entertaining outdoors.


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