Hanging string lights are a quick and easy way to add soft light to your outdoor party. Whether you use whimsical string lights shaped like fruits or animals, or stick with traditional Christmas lights, following a few simple tips can help you ensure that the light you're providing is just right for your party.
Begin by carefully examining the area you're using for your party. If you're holding your party on your deck, look for existing nails or hooks you can use to hold your lights. If you're holding your party under a canopy, see if the poles are exposed. If you do not have existing hooks or brackets to use to mount your lights, you'll simply use twine to tie them to exposed canopy rods, fencing or other solid objects. Do not use staples or nails as you can easily pierce the cord and cause an electrical hazard.
Next, determine where your guests will be standing and sitting. Position lights behind or above the seating and standing areas. Avoid placing lights at eye level. Make sure the lights aren't so bright that they will disturb your neighbors. You may need to go to your neighbor's yard to ensure that the lights aren't bothersome. Finally, keep all bulbs and cords out of the reach of children and pets. The colorful light is attractive, but children and pets can be seriously injured if they chew on or grasp the light strings. Make sure the cord from the light string to the electrical outlet is properly taped to the porch or driveway, to avoid a tripping hazard. If you don't have a nearby electrical outlet, consider purchasing solar string lights. No electricity is needed to power these lights, but you will need to install them several days before your party to ensure that they're fully charged before your guests arrive.