When you think about landscape lighting, it can be easy to get overwhelmed with options. Do you want to go DIY or work with a high end landscape lighting design company? Do you want string lights running along your walkway or core drilled lights set into the concrete? Do you want to go with white light, or a colored LED?
The stakes are even higher when you plan to use the space to entertain. Outdoor entertaining is a touchstone of the American Experience: Backyard football, cookouts, 4th of July Barbeques. There is a reason why 64% of all the exterior renovations that occur in America are focused on the back yard.
But whether you are looking for a high end landscape lighting or a quick fix for terrace lighting, there is one important consideration that you should not forget: The Moon.
Here are a few tips to help your exterior lighting design work with the moon rather than against it.
Add a Dimmer
The moon is an ever changing factor in your exterior lighting design. During a full moon, it can overwhelm your light features; but during the new moon, it can leave your yard in darkness. By adding a dimmer to your existing light design, you can adjust the brightness of your features so they complement the natural light.
By strategically placing dim lights among the overhanging branches of a tree or any other foliage rich feature — an ivy covered pergola for instance — you can help to enhance the natural appearance of moonlight, especially if you have a particularly shady yard.
Foster a Warm Glow
Are you familiar with the phrase the harsh light of day? While the bright hot sun might be pleasant on the beach, there is a reason why movies shoot their outdoor scenes during twilight.
Unfortunately, most lights try to emulate the same brightness as daylight, rather than the inviting warmth of dusk or a full moon. Choosing LED lights that have a warm yellow quality to them can help you accentuate the effect of the moonlight, instead of overwhelming it.
Keep Your Accent Lights Close to the Ground
While it might be tempting to adorn your outdoor eating area with a beautiful, hanging light fixture, an elaborate piece clashed with the night sky during the half of the month while the moonlight at it’s apogee.
Keeping you accent close to the ground allows you to make the most of your centerpiece, whether it is a custom light or simply highlighting an architectural feature.
Whether you are choosing a few simple lighting touches or a full high end landscape lighting design, it is important that you consider how natural light will factor in to your design.