How to Hang String Lights on Patio

how to hang string lights on patio

Introduction: Throwing a curveball into your patio’s ambiance? Lighting can make or break the vibe, and there’s nothing like string lights to add a pinch of magic. But you might be scratching your head, thinking, “How do I hang these without making a dog’s breakfast out of it?” Fret not! Here’s your guide to illuminate your patio space without getting tangled up.

Picking the Right Lights:

Before you bite the bullet, it’s crucial to choose the right lights. Opt for waterproof and outdoor-rated string lights. LED bulbs are energy-efficient and less prone to overheating, so they’re a smart pick for long summer nights.

Plan Your Path:

Don’t fly by the seat of your pants. Start by mapping out where you’d like the lights to hang. Consider focal points like trees, railings, or posts. A well-thought-out plan can save a ton of hassle and reduce the risk of playing musical chairs with lights later.

Gather Your Tools:

Getting your ducks in a row before you start can save you from running around like a headless chicken. Some of the essential tools include:

  • Measuring tape (to avoid any guesstimation)
  • Hooks or clips (for securing the lights)
  • Extension cords (for those hard-to-reach places)
  • A ladder (to reach new heights, literally)

Hanging ’em Up:

Once you’ve got your game plan ready, it’s time to swing into action.

  1. Start at the Source: Always begin near the power outlet. It’s better to have extra slack at the end than to come up short.
  2. Secure the First Bulb: Using hooks or zip ties, secure the first bulb next to your power source. This ensures you’re off to a sturdy start.
  3. Drape, Don’t Drag: Let the lights hang a little between each anchor point for that droopy, relaxed look. But remember, it’s a fine line between ‘deliberately droopy’ and ‘looks like it’s about to fall off.’
  4. End with Care: If you have leftover lights at the end, don’t bunch them up. Instead, loop them back along the string or towards the power source.

Light It Up:

Now for the moment of truth! Plug in the lights and bask in the glow of your handiwork. If a bulb’s gone rogue and isn’t lighting up, don’t throw in the towel. Sometimes, it’s as simple as tightening the bulb or replacing it.


1. Can I mix and match different string lights?
Absolutely! But remember, it’s like mixing stripes with polka dots in fashion. It can look fabulous or a bit off, so lay them out before hanging.

2. How do I care for my lights during winter?
When Jack Frost starts nipping, it’s a good idea to take down your lights, coil them up without any kinks, and store them in a dry place.

3. Can I add a dimmer to my string lights?
Most LED string lights are dimmer-compatible. Adding one can let you shift from ‘bright and lively’ to ‘soft and romantic’ in a jiffy.


There you have it! A hassle-free guide to turning your patio from drab to fab with string lights. Just remember, Rome wasn’t built in a day. Take your time, keep safety in mind, and soon, your patio will be the talk of the town.