It’s really not until you lay eyes on a beautifully crafted and expertly lit garden that you really get an impression of how big of a difference strategic lighting can make to exterior living spaces. It’s one thing to simply bathe the whole back garden in blindingly bright light just for the sake of making things visible, but it’s something else entirely to go about a strategic process of illuminating in a manner that results in an outright masterpiece.
Just as is the case with interior designer lighting, the basic rules regarding exterior lighting are simple enough to say the least. In fact, just so long as you bear a few rules in mind in terms of what not to do, chances are you will not go far wrong.
So with this in mind, here’s a quick look at perhaps the five most commonly made garden lighting mistakes of which all are generally quite easy to avoid:
1 – No Advance Planning
First and foremost, it is almost impossible to go about any such home improvement as this without a clear plan in mind. And that doesn’t just mean knowing that you want to light up your garden, it means knowing exactly how you plan to do it. This means sitting down with a pen and paper if necessary and mapping out your garden in order to then made notes as to what you intend to illuminate and where. The best way of going about this is to split your garden up into as many sections as necessary in order to work on them one at a time. If you try to go the whole thing in one go with no plan, you’ve no chance.
2 – Trying to Light the Whole Thing
The second biggest mistake is that of forgetting that what you are actually looking to do is to enhance your garden aesthetically and to make it a more pleasant place to spend time. What you are not looking to do it is to light the place up so brightly that you could easily play a game of football on the grass at 2:00am. This is definitely a good example of an instance in which less really is more as a rather than lighting up the whole garden, you are instead looking to accentuate its best features and most striking elements. Just as soon as you get out of the mind-set wherein you think you need to light up the whole garden, the whole process becomes exponentially cheaper and easier to go about.
3 – Opting for Low-Grade Hardware
It is natural to want to get the job done for the lowest possible price and to avoid overspending when and where possible. Nevertheless, there is a difference between keeping costs to a sensible minimum and investing in the cheapest, lowest quality hardware on the market. It may look as if a bargain basement lighting system does the same as a system for a much higher price, but in reality it will not be long before the cracks begin to show. Quite literally in fact as not only is the overall effect likely to be disappointing with the low-grade installation, but chances are that when faced with the great British elements, it won’t be long before they start to fall to pieces.
4 – Going OTT at Any Time
Something else to bear in mind is that as far as the experts are concerned, exterior lighting is the kind of thing that should be tackled and approached with a sense of elegance and reserve. Or in other words, and as already touched upon, less can be more. Not only is it a bad idea to try lighting up your whole garden in the hope of achieving an attractive result, but even in the areas you do intend to light up, it is important not to go over the top. Remember, what you are looking to do is improve the aesthetic value of your garden and its quality as a living space, as opposed to simply improving visibility during hours of darkness. And what’s more, you can always add further lighting in the future should you choose to.
5 – Not Protecting Your Investment
Last but not least, while the vast majority of high-end garden lighting products on the market today require little to no maintenance, it is still important to protect your investment. From regular cleaning to checking their lights following bouts of bad weather and keeping an eye on early essential wiring and connections, exterior lighting can be very easy to look after and is guaranteed to fall into disrepair if it is ignored.