Summer means long evenings spent outside, hanging out in the warm air even after the sun has set. I seriously love ending every day in our backyard, or on the patio, just relaxing, enjoying time with family, and reflecting on what a beautiful place we live in. To make the view even better, I thought some outdoor candlelight would add some magic to the whole ambiance and make every night feel like something special. It sure helped with our outdoor candle stakes. It’s a simple touch that makes such a difference, and I’m going to show you some of the most creative ideas I’ve come across! So pretty.
I just love succulents and really any fresh greenery that so prettily fills a space. And the way the candlelight plays off the plants and highlights the different shades of green, it’s just lovely isn’t it? You can play with the height and shape of the chandelier, but what I love most about it is it’ll look great during the daytime too! Such a versatile piece that’s simple to set up using an old chandelier base, a succulent arrangement of your choice, and some candles too! You could even try some candles of different height, shape, and color to switch it up for difference occasions or seasons.
Mason Jar Path Lights
Mason jars are a staple for the craft/DIY addict, like myself. There’s so many things you can do with them, but I have to say dropping some tiny tea lights and using them to make path lights is probably one of the simplest. The only addition you’ll have to make is adding the hook to the top so they can hang nicely on some posts you can pick up at your local hardware store. Or, you can also find mason jars with handles already attached. I think the colored jars would look really great like this too!
Wine Bottle Tiki Torches
This is a great way to upcycle an empty bottle of your favorite wine! It would be pretty to use bottles of different shapes and shades, depending on the style of your backyard. After all, red and white wine each have a place in my heart! You could space the wine bottles evenly alongside a countertop or bar, or do a couple little clusters in various locations throughout the patio. It’ll definitely give an elegant look to the space, but can easily be made more fun by adding some decor to the wine bottles…think confetti, paint, ribbon, or tape!
Pool Noodle Votives
Hollowed out pool noodles make for the best little votive candle holders…who would’ve thought?! They’re definitely kid-friendly, so you don’t have to worry about late-night clean up before the little people are ready to cannon ball into the pool first thing in the morning…or is this just a thing at my house in the summertime? When I make these, I plan on using lots of different colored pool noodles and cutting them at different heights for a funky, fun look. If you’re up for it, let the kids get in on the action too!
If you’ve got a backyard full of big, beautiful trees, I’m thinking they’re just begging to have some of these sweet little hanging lanterns join the party! Fill up jars with tiny rocks, stones, pebbles, marbles, beads, etc. and then drop some votive or tea candles in. You could vary how much the jars are filled and with what, going for a natural or more colorful look, depending on your personal style.
Floating Citronella Candles
There are lots of times I am grateful we live in the desert, and this is certainly one of them. When summer rolls around in other parts of the world, the humidity and mosquitoes roll in…ICK! Sorry for all you friends out there who have to deal with those pesky critters, but I did find a pretty solution for you! These floating citronella candles are the perfect addition to your backyard when summer strikes and brings with it all the bugs. There’s hope: you can still hang out in the backyard if you’ve got some of these homemade candles at the ready! YAY!
Bucket of Flowers + Candles
This is a really easy last-minute arrangement when hosting friends and family in an outdoor space. Get an extra water basin, ice bucket, or large decorative pot or bowl and fill it with water. Clip some blooms off flowers from the garden or a bouquet and gently place them on the surface to float. Then, lay some floating candles down in between the blooms, for a picturesque look that’ll be perfect for a day-time gathering and an evening affair.
There’s something whimsical about paper lanterns, which is probably why I love them so much. They just bring feelings of happiness, hope, and peace. And while they’re sometimes only seen at special events, you can bring the magic home by making some of your own! Using fire-retardant lantern bags, hole punch pretty shapes into them, fill with candles, and ta-da! Pretty paper lanterns right at home :)
Terra Cotta Votives
For a fun craft that’s perfect for friends of any age, fill tiny terra cotta pots with candle wax and wicks to make the sweetest little votives. You could even paint the pots and dye the wax for a rainbow of colors! These would be great party favors or thank-you gifts to send off your guests after enjoying a fun summer evening together.
Succulent Candle Centerpiece
Here I go again with the succulents, but really can you blame me? They’re so easy to maintain, even for those with the blackest of thumbs, and grow really well in a range of climates. This centerpiece is full of a variety of succulents and made complete by a brightly-lit candle in the center. It’s best to enclose the candle with glass, so you avoid any sort of fire danger, but you can make it your own by switching up the rocks in the base for other small objects, or varying the length and style of the featured candle.
A final idea for you is to make tall candle lanterns, which will stand as a more permanent fixture in your yard. These guys take a bit more work, so it’s nice that they stand sturdy for you to enjoy for a long stretch of time. They’re actually made using tuna cans (yay for upcycling!) and are then painted in metallic hues for a classy look. You could line a path with them to the front doorstep, artfully place them around the pool, or stake a couple in the backyard. I’m still trying to decide which is my favorite!
Can’t tell you enough how excited I am for summer to arrive and to enjoy all these creative and unique candle ideas. Which one are you most looking forward to having in your backyard? Share your thoughts and pictures with me in the comments! Would love to hear about your backyard bliss!