Christmas Lighting for your Home
Simple tips to help you turn your home into a wonderland of Christmas lights!
To us, Christmas should be a year-round event. We love the vast variety of lights that twinkle, sparkle, and even change colours to invoke the Christmas spirit. Yet choosing the perfect string of lights can become an overwhelming decision making process. To make your home shine brightly with good cheer, here’s everything you need to know about all the types of Christmas lights available.
How much have I got to spend?
We understand Christmas can be an expensive time of year, so think about how much you have to spend and keep an eye on your budget as it can be easy to get carried away. Your ideal might be to curtain your entire house in our wonderful outdoor curtain lights, but for most of us, that might be a little over the top. Perhaps a mix of outdoor string lights, combined with icicle lights would be the answer, while if covering large areas is your thing and you can’t quite stretch to curtain lights, our outdoor LED net lights might be a great alternative.
LED systems can be a great choice for homes as they are often modular and will allow you to run multiple strings from just one plug. They are also far more robust than traditional filament style fairy lights so you won’t have to start searching for and replacing blown bulbs.
Here’s a few more details and suggestions:
String lights are long lengths of lights, perhaps most reminiscent of the lights you put on your Christmas tree at home. Many LED varieties are connectable sometimes up to 750m powered from one socket which can prove invaluable when your power source is limited or hard to get to. String lights are a great option for decorating large trees either being draped around their foliage or wrapped tightly around the trunk and branches. Available in many colours, functions and in either mains or low voltage.
We have blank cable in 5 and 10 metre increments which are extremely useful when your power source is some distance from where you wish the lighting to start from. These blanks can also be used between strings of lights – great when running from one tree, bush or even building to another.
Curtain Lights are another option. Styled like a curtain, hence the name, they usually have a 2m or 3m wide top cable with a number of vertical drops. Various colours and functions are available. This style of light is ideal for covering large areas, perhaps the side of your house.
Many displays can be created by manipulating the top cable and vertical strings into different positions. Curtain lights are also an excellent way to decorate deciduous trees – with the top cable curled in the crown of the tree, the strings can be led up different branches.
Net Lights are a speedy and sometimes budget-friendly solution is to use . Available in 2m x 3m sections, this style can simply be draped over bushes and garden foliage to create an eye catching display.
These can also be used to turn a dull wall or hedge into an atmosphere creating backdrop to an event or special occasion.
Icicle Lights, a Christmas best seller. The name says it all, lights that look like dripping icicles. Normally available in 4-6m wide sections with vertical drops of varying lengths to represent icicles these are hugely popular at Christmas time but of course can be used all year round.
LED styles tend to be connectable, and hung from guttering outside or stairwells inside they can produce fantastic results in a very short space of time.
Many of the LED systems you can find will be fully connectable allowing for greater flexibility in installation. Extension cables, splitters, timers, RCD’s and flashing units can be used in numerous ways to achieve your desired outcome. We think Boots did a pretty good job when they used our lights for their 2011 Christmas advertising campaign!
Eye Catching Effects
Create life and movement with melting icicles and sparkling crystals!
You may already have a good idea of the type of lights you want and what look you are want to achieve. However if you are still looking for some inspiration then we suggest checking out our Social Media Pages where we post inspirational ideas to help you achieve the ultimate festive sparkle.
Installing – think about the how and who.
Once you have an idea of what kind of lights you want to buy and where you want them to go it is time to think about how you are going to install them. Are you going to be able to do it all yourself or would you be happier hiring a sparky to complete the installation? Some electricians will offer to source the lights for you but remember the lights will cost you more that way.
Have a walk around your house and look at what you will be attaching the lights to. Do you have a long enough ladder? Will a ladder be enough or do you need to think about hiring a cherry picker?
Now is also the time to think about your power supply. You may already have an outside plug socket, if not then you will need to get a sparky to fit one for you. There are other options of course, some people leave a window slightly open and run a cord out that way. However, this is not the most secure thing to do or the best for keeping your house cosy in the winter. Whatever you decide to do it is wise to think about this before you start buying so that you have a good idea of what length of extension leads you will require.
Take a few moments to think about your most suitable place for storing the lights throughout the year when they are not lighting up your house. A dry and cool environment is best and you may want to consider buying some plastic storage boxes rather than trying to squeeze the lights back into the packaging they came in.
Invest in quality
When you are shopping around and deciding where to buy your lights from it is worth thinking about buying commercial grade lights if you can afford to. Investing in well-made lights now means that you will be able to enjoy them for years to come rather than reaching into your pocket every year to replace lights that have not withstood our British winters.
If you have bought lights that require spare bulbs then buy a stock of them at the same time as the lights as you may struggle to find spare bulbs in the future.