Light up 2021 with these decorating hacks
If you’re decorating your house with lights this Christmas, here are some ideas and inspiration to help you get started.
Think outside the box
There’s usually much more to decorate than just the front awnings and roof of your house. Take a look at the features and structures you have that would look great with lights. A garden bench, your mailbox, trees, shrubs and other anchored items could make a good base to decorate. Just make sure you use outdoor lights that are safe to use on your items or greenery.
Shine a light on solar
Solar lights are generally cheaper to run and easier to use because you don’t need to worry about extension cords or power points. You just need to make sure the solar panel power source sits in a sunny spot.
Tread lightly – recycle and repurpose
Rather than start from scratch with your decorations, take stock of what you already have at home. You might find new ways to use everyday items as decorations – or a box of lights you forgot you bought in the sales last year!
If you do buy new decorations, choose options that are low-waste and high-efficiency where possible. Manage all packaging thoughtfully – use your recycling bin or relevant council services for recyclable packaging or use REDcycle drop-off points for soft plastics.
Choose the best lights for your needs
Whichever type of lights you choose, always make sure you buy outdoor lights for outdoor use.
Check whether any lights you buy come with hooks or clips for hanging. If not, check with your local hardware store for advice on the best and most durable type of hooks to use.
If you’re shopping online for lights, don’t restrict yourself to searching for “Christmas lights” as “outdoor party lights” and “novelty outdoor lights” could help you find some great products too. Just make sure you allow plenty of time for delivery!
Test, test and test again
High impact decorating takes careful planning! Before you climb that ladder:
• Lay out your outdoor lights and heavy-duty outdoor extension cords (for non-solar lights) on the ground in the location you’ll be hanging them.
• Check that all cords will be able to safely reach your power source without causing trip hazards or pulling at the cords.
• Switch on each strand of lights to check that everything is working before you go to the trouble of putting them all in place.
• When you install your lights and decorations, always follow the manufacturer’s instructions and be safe.
Use seasonal signage
Letterboards, vintage chalkboards, laminated signs, outdoor-safe light boxes or home-made Santa signs are all great ways to spread Christmas cheer and add a touch of magic.
You could use festive signage to share a line from your favourite carol, tell a bad Christmas cracker joke or advise visitors how they can vote for your display.
Please note, the information shared in this article was correct at the time of publishing.