How to Make the Most of Your Garden With Festoon Lighting

How to Make the Most of Your Garden With Festoon Lighting

How to Make the Most of Your Garden With Festoon Lighting

Picture this: you’ve just invested in new garden furniture and arranged everything to your taste, but when the sun sets, you simply retreat to your living room and neglect your outside space. What was all of this effort for if you can’t enjoy your garden in the evening?

If you want to maximise the amount of time you can spend in your garden, then you’ll need an outdoor lighting solution that fits your needs. The right lighting will be aesthetically pleasing, easy to install and resistant to all common weather conditions, helping you enjoy your garden throughout the year. 

Outdoor festoon lights can fulfil all of these requirements and more. These durable and versatile lights will both illuminate your garden and provide the perfect atmosphere for parties and gatherings.

So, if you want to learn how to make the most of your garden with festoon lighting, then keep on reading to discover the benefits of festoon lighting, the best outdoor garden lighting ideas, and how to install these lights in your garden. Below is an introduction video to the ranges of festoons we supply here at UltraLEDs.

What Are Festoon Garden Lights?

If you aren’t really sure what festoon lights are, then don’t worry - you’ve probably already seen them in classic Hollywood movies without realising it.

Festoon lights, also known as string lights or party lights, are simply a series of large bulbs strung together to create a ‘festoon’ or garland. It’s easy to think of them as the larger, more classic version of the ever-popular fairy lights.

So, why are they called festoon lights? The word ‘festoon’ is derived from the Latin word ‘festum’, which means feast - this showcases the strong connection between these lights and celebrations! However, despite this connection to parties, festoon garden lights are incredibly versatile and can also be used as an everyday decoration.

But are festoon lights waterproof?

Since these lights are meant to go outside, their weather resistance is a pretty big deal. Luckily, most festoon lighting is waterproof, and you only need to check the IP rating to confirm this.

An IP (Ingress Protection) rating shows a product’s level of protection against solid particles and liquid, represented by two digits. For example, most modern festoon garden lights have an IP44 rating, meaning they’re protected from solid particles larger than 1mm and low-velocity sprays of water.

As a result, these festoon bulbs can resist damp and gloomy British weather, giving you peace of mind when you leave them out during a spring shower. However, if you want extra protection against heavy rain, then you can buy weatherproof festoon lighting with a higher IP rating (such as IP65).

Why You Should Choose Festoon Lights for Your Garden

So, what makes these lights so special?

Festoon garden lights have many benefits compared to other outdoor lighting options. These advantages can be traced back to both the aesthetic properties of these lights and the practical benefits of LED lighting.

Here are the best examples of the advantages of LED garden lights and festoon lighting:

Easy to install

Whether you want to buy solar-powered, battery-powered or mains-powered festoon lights, these outdoor lights are incredibly easy to install. There’s no need to mess around with complicated wiring as you’ll just need to plug in your lights (if they’re mains-powered) or get straight to hanging them up around your garden (more on this later).

To make things even easier, you can buy LED festoon kits for an all-in-one lighting solution.


Nowadays, most outdoor festoon lights are LEDs, meaning that they have a much longer lifespan than old incandescent or fluorescent bulbs. In fact, an LED bulb is so energy-efficient, it can last up to 50,000 hours! This means you can help both the environment and your finances by buying LED garden lights - it’s a win-win situation!

Safe and durable

LEDs are also renowned for their safety and durability. Since these bulbs are more energy-efficient, they convert most of the energy they receive into light and hardly any is converted into heat. Incandescent and fluorescent bulbs create much more heat energy than LEDs, which is why LEDs don’t become hot like other bulbs. This means LEDs are much less likely to cause a fire.

In the past, festoon lights contained glass bulbs that would overheat and be prone to breaking. With plastic LED bulbs, you won’t face any of these issues and they’ll last much longer.

Come in many shapes, colours and sizes

Festoon garden lights can suit any garden and any aesthetic. You can find LED garden lights in a wide range of colours, including warm white, bright white, blue, green, red, and many more. There are even rainbow and colour-changing options!

With this level of customisation, festoon lights are the perfect outdoor lighting solution. They suit parties, events or even just chilled evenings relaxing in your garden.


As mentioned above, festoon lights suit any occasion, making them the most versatile type of outdoor lighting. 

In fact, they’re so much more than a way to decorate your outdoor space. By lighting up the exterior of your home with these LED bulbs, you can enhance your house’s security and ward off burglars. This lighting will also illuminate any potential hazards in your garden when it gets dark, such as steep steps and water features.

How Outdoor Festoon Lights Can Transform Your Garden

Outdoor lighting is essential for allowing you and your guests to enjoy your garden well into the night. 

In particular, we’ve established that LED festoon lighting is the best choice in terms of ease of installation, safety, durability and versatility. But how exactly can you use festoon lighting to make the most of your garden? 

Here are the best outdoor garden lighting ideas for all occasions using festoon lights:

1) Garden parties

Festoon lights are synonymous with parties. These classic and playful string lights add a touch of fun and even elegance to any outdoor space, making them perfect for decorating a summer garden party that continues after the sun sets.

Outdoor lighting is also ideal for illuminating the parts of your garden you want to highlight. During a garden party, you’ll want to make your outdoor seating area or patio the focal point of your garden with carefully placed lighting. This will provide a space for everyone to gather around. 

If you have a pergola, this will be a great focal point for your outdoor space and the perfect place to chat and relax with your guests in the evening. A pergola is also an ideal structure to hang festoon lights and fairy lights from. Simply drape your connectable festoon lights around your pergola and plug them into a power source if they’re mains-powered.

If you don’t have a pergola, you can always hang your festoon garden lights from any large trees in your garden or between and around your garden fences. 

2) Birthday parties

For a summer birthday, why not host the party in your own back garden? You’ll have much more space to mingle with guests compared to your living room and you’ll be able to bask in the (rare) British sunshine!

If you’re hosting a child’s birthday party, then outdoor festoon lights are still the ideal option. Thanks to the wide variety of LED bulbs on the market, you’ll be able to find the birthday boy/girl’s favourite colour or even rainbow festoon lighting. This will certainly liven up the party!

Best of all, you won’t need to worry about safety issues with these lights if kids are running around your garden. LED garden lights aren’t hot to touch and the hard outer plastic is extremely durable.

3) Weddings

From kids’ birthday parties to formal weddings, festoon lights can suit any event. 

If you have an outdoor wedding reception that extends into the night, you’ll want outdoor lighting that illuminates the space without adding a harsh, unnatural glare. Warm white festoon lights are a fantastic wedding lighting solution; they’ll provide a soft, romantic glow whilst evoking a sense of glamour and elegance!

To guide guests along pathways in the dark, you can hang festoon lights between poles or fix them lower to the ground with shepherd’s hooks. This will create an enchanting and magical atmosphere for your outdoor wedding reception.

4) Alfresco dining

Outdoor dining is a must when the weather is good. Admittedly, British weather can be very hit or miss, even in the summer, but having a sheltered dining area in your garden is great for entertaining guests and hosting dinner parties.

Once again, festoon lighting is the best option for your outdoor seating and dining areas. With these warm white LED garden lights, you’ll have just the right amount of light in the evening without spoiling the ambience with a harsh glare. You can heighten this cosy and romantic effect with strings of fairy lights between your festoon bulbs.

How to Install Festoon Garden Lights

No one wants to spend their precious time messing around with complicated wiring. So, if you’re looking for an easy way to install outdoor lighting in your garden, here’s how you can hang up some festoon lighting in no time at all.

First of all, you need to choose between mains-powered, battery-powered and solar-powered festoon lights. Solar festoon lights are obviously much more eco-friendly and don’t need to be attached to a power source, but they’re not as bright as other options. You’ll get more light out of mains-powered and battery-powered lights, so you need to decide what works best for you and your outdoor space.

Then, you can start hanging your festoon lights around your garden. As mentioned earlier, a pergola is a fantastic structure to hang festoon lights from, but you can also hang them between trees, fences or any other large, fixed object. If you want to illuminate a pathway, you could hang some bulbs close to the ground using small shepherd’s hooks.

Final Thoughts: Where to Buy the Best Festoon Garden Lights

To implement these outdoor garden lighting ideas, you’ll need to find the highest quality festoon lighting for the best price.

At Ultra LEDs, you can find a wide range of outdoor festoon lights, kits and accessories to help you install your perfect lighting. There’s also a huge selection of colours and shapes, so you can always find a lighting solution that matches your personal taste.

Check out the Ultra LEDs website to get started on your garden transformation!