Lighting is one of those small things that makes all the difference - and can turn an average backyard into a stunning landscape.
Thankfully, you won't need to call an electrician. These project ideas are for those do-it-yourselfer's who want to transform a backyard without spending too much. But each idea allows for full creativity, and can fit into any sized space.
If you want to expand that backyard even more we have some amazing Firepit ideas and some furniture projects made from old pallets.
1. Sticks and Lights
There's no real instructions here, it's just to show what you can accomplish with some simple string lighting and some sticks. Drive a few logs into the ground and spread some lights out and suddenly you have a charming space just behind your house.
2. Light Columns
None other than Martha Stewart came up with this ingenious and "artsy" setup. Plant some bamboo sticks into the ground and wrap them with string lighting, then drop chinese latterns overtop.
3. PVC Pipelights
These skyscrapers of light are actually PVC pipes, and were cleverly custom designed with a rotary tool. In fact, you could cut out any design you like, and simply place a few battery operatred lights inside to light up your yard or home in a very unique way.
4. The Many Uses of Rope Light
LED ropelight may have started as christmas decorations, but that isn't stopping you from using it all year long. It's so flexible and easy to use that you can use it to highlight any part of your yard. A few more ideas is underneath deck railing, along the fence, or under a canopy or eavestrough
5. DIY Light Poles
Some simple poles and lights can go a long way, but what if you have no way to hold those poles up? These guys very cleverly used concrete planters filled with cement, then covered the concrete with plants. You can put those poles anywhere you like and they look awesome.
6. Recycled Wine Bottle Torch
Love wine? Who doesn't? Maybe you have a few extra wine bottles kicking around and you want to show your love of wine in a fashionable way... I'm not judging. But this is actually a super creative way to light up your yard.
7. Canning Jar Lights
A mason jar chandelier has just the right touch of rustic charm - I love it. Not to mention these is a super budget friendly creation. It makes use of a few jars and some Ikea lights, so I challenge you to try this one on your own.
8. Paper-Bag Party Lights
Once again Martha Stewart comes through with a charming idea, these festival styled paper bag lights. Adding pieces of ribbon make them look kites stuck in the sky. Now with that being said, be cautious putting paper around a heat source. Use lights the produce low to no-heat, or paper that's properly treated for high temps. Also, keep a close eye on them, you don't want to start a fire and ruin your party.
9. Clay Pot Light Fixture
I can't believe I never thought of this. Just go to the dollar store and pick up some clay pots or even some baskets, and turn them into a fun (and cheap) light fixture for the backyard.
10. Tin Can Lanterns
Here's a project that's anyone can do, and is awesome for backyard parties. And it's as simple as hammering a nail a bunch of times into an old can. Now just place a candle (or LED) in to light up your party in a very rustic yet whimsical manner.
11. How to Build a $200 Pergola
This project is a little more involved, since we're not just talking about lighting, but building a little romantic corner of your yard. It's hard not to fall in-love with the idea of having your own piece of Italy within arms reach. And all for under $200, not too shabby.
12. Hula Hoop Chandelier
That's right - a hula hoop. Add some string lights and lace and you've got a very frugal and charming Chandelier. This is another case of "why didn't I think of that?".
13. Patio Makeover
Taking some ideas for this full patio makeover - we can take a closer look at some of these great lighting tricks. Like finding this grid style bucket and filling it with string lights, and hanging it up with rope. Or just draping string lights over a brick wall to add a dynamic effect.
14. Homemmade Rope Light Sign
We covered some of the creative ways to use rope light - and here's another great example. Use the rope and some pins to spell out words across your fence, shed, or garage. Super simple and very budget friendly.
15. Outdoor Chandelier
Got an extra chandelier not being used? Or maybe you spotted one in the clearance section of Lowe's (or even a garage sale). A quick paint job can turn it into something classy and fun for the patio.
16. String Pole Lights
Here we are with another edition of Sticks and Lights. This time it's even more simple - buckets, logs (cut to size) and concrete. All-in-all, a very budget friendly solution. We certainly recommend you have some cutting tools ready for your branches or logs, but this is an otherwise easy way to get your lights up and looking great.
17. Garden Flower Lights
I bet you wouldn't believe this piece is made from an old plastic bottle, a broomstick, and a bike tire. These garden lights look so elegant and perfect they actually look store bought, and is the very essence of frugal DIY. Even if you don't make these, it's worth checking out how they were made.
18. Flower Light Shower
How cute is this? And such a clever use of an old watering can. I know a few people in my life who would love this as a gift to accomodate their garden. And the best part is it's super budget friendly piece.
19. Magical Mason Jar Oil Lamp
I really like this idea for it's beautiful assortment of colors, and how you can design it to fit any theme or holiday. It's an oil lamp that's great for any indoor or outdoor project.
20. Outdoor Hanging Lights Using Mason Jars
Ahh Mason Jars, the cornerstone of all rustic decor. So cheap, and so easy. And this one is no different. Get some cool looking hooks, chains, and a few jars + candles. How much easier can it get?
21. Lantern DIY
Here's a quick little project to light up your patio furniture. It's a simple as gluing yarn to a balloon and filling it with some string lights. Sounds weird, but it totally works.
22. Ping Pong Ball Lights
I love this look, and it suits just about any backyard. A mix of your typical string lights with pingpong balls and you got something budget-friendly and charming.
23. Add outdoor mood lighting for a big impact
This isn't one particular DIY project, but a series of ideas coming together to rejuvenate a backyard. This list is also meant to just give you simple ideas on how you can tranform your own space.
24. Solar Powered Glowing Walkway Blocks
Ok so I know what you're thinking - "these look cool, but what are they?" They're glass blocks that glow, you can place them in the grass, garden, or walway. AND - they're solar powered. That's some unique thinking if you ask me.
25. Outdoor Tuna Can Lantern
That's right, this was made out of a tuna can, a broomstick, and an old drinking glass. Don't believe me? Go look for yourself. You can literally make a dozen of these for a few dollars worth of material.
26. Dollar Store Wastebasket Pendant Light
Look familiar? That's because it's a waste basket flipped upside down. The weird thing is it totally works. Drill a hole into the basket and insert a light, can't ask for something easier than that.
27. Making Glow Jars
How amazing does this look? It's definitely giving me some Harry Potter vibes, and it's a project that your kids would certainly love.
28. DIY Grapevine Lighting Balls
These huge lighting balls are great for hanging in big trees. They're actually made using beachballs, so you can image the size.
29. DIY Rope Wrapped Mason jar Lights
A little rope can make a big difference - it's low cost but adds some lovely rustic charm to any project. In fact you can pretty much add this rope idea to any of these projects to take your lighting game to the next level.
30. Easy DIY Pendant Light with Beautiful Origami DIY Lampshade
I feel like we need more origami lights in our lives, it's so elegant and beauitful. The hard part is getting the folds right (I was never great at origami), but at least it's very inexpensive. Of course be careful with paper and heat sources like light bulbs, make sure you pick lightbulbs that don't get too hot and the material of choice isn't flammable.
31. DIY Mason Jar Firefly Lights
We've covered this type of project a few times in this list - so what's so special about this one? It comes with some super easy-to-follow video instructions so that anyone can make their firefly jar in minutes.
32. Firefly Jar
Yet another firefly lamp - but look how cute this one is. They've cleverly filled the jar with fake grass and a burlap cover - giving it a taste of whimsical-ness. This look's like something Peter Pan would carry.
33. Kate’s outdoor planter pendant lamp
By combining two planter baskets and a light you get a very unique looking fixture for outdoor parties and entertainment.
34. DIY Outdoor Tea Light Lanterns
What I really like about these lanterns is the assortment of colors. A little paint can light up your backyard in a very colorful way. This is especially awesome if you have a color themed party or wedding and you want to keep it low cost.
35. Diy Solar Powered Lights Of Jars
Yes, another Mason Jar Light. But consider this: what if they were solar powered and you never had to turn them on yourself - ever? And what if it was actually super easy to do? You might be surprised how easy this little project is...
36. DiY Cedar Cube Landscape Lights
A couple of 4x4 blocks of wood can totally transform your basic solar powered lights into a great landscape piece. For extra points: stain those wood pieces a dark walnut color or something that matches your house.
37. Easiest DIY Hanging Mason Jar Lights
38. How to Make Ice Lanterns
Probably the most unique idea on this list, these are made completely out of ice and coloring. Obviously this is a one time use sort of project, but a great way to impress at a backyard party. The best part is they're totally easy to make.