Should Outdoor Lighting Match?

Exterior home lighting is crucial to your home’s style, aesthetic, and safety. Over time, different styles and designs could have been replaced, creating incohesive home designs. Just like other DIY projects, cohesive and stylized lighting fixtures will transform and update the look of your house.

The choice of outdoor lighting is up to the homeowner. However, matching outdoor lighting can create more cohesive spaces, improve the look of your home, and increase property value. Combining similar sizes, materials, and designs are just a few ways to match outdoor lighting.

No one is going to stop you if you want to mix and match bright colors, designs, and materials. However, if you’re concerned about creating a more cohesive and fluid home design, this article is for you. Here’s what you need to know about matching outdoor lighting.

Does All Outdoor Lighting Have to Match?

Bright white light bulb in the outdoor patio lamp at night

Outdoor spaces are naturally broken into different sections. There are areas where people congregate, like barbeques and grills, where we naturally want to host events. When we add furniture into the mix, like gazebo sets, we create defined and localized zones.

It’s not necessarily crucial for all outdoor lighting to match because each section of your backyard will serve a different purpose. Since these areas are unique, you can use different lighting fixtures and temperatures to reflect the atmosphere you’re trying to create.

But there are plenty of opportunities to pair light-style to the space. While a warm-light pendant like the LOG BARN Outdoor Pendant (on Amazon) may fit one space, other elements like landscaping lighting with a light like the Lumina 4W LED Landscape Light (also on Amazon) is more appropriate.

Should Outdoor Lighting Have Matching Styles?

Technically speaking, it’s completely up to the homeowner to decide if they want their outdoor lighting to have matching styles. If you crave bright colors and pastels, go for it! However, matching light fixtures can add curb appeal and increase your home’s value.

This isn’t to say all of your exterior lights need to have boring black finishes and pendant-style designs. Matching finishes, materials, and sizes will create a more cohesive look.

Choosing fixtures that compliment your outer garage, patio, or porch lights will add fluidity to your home.

What Styles of Outdoor Lighting Can be Mix-Matched?

When you mix and match any style in any part of the home, it’s best to keep things simple. You’ll want each lighting fixture to have at least something in common, whether it’s the color or type of finish, to create some flow in the space.

Match Specific Traits and Details

Combining exterior lighting can lead to exciting spaces that pop and reflect your personality. However, without proper execution, mixing and matching outdoor lighting can quickly become tacky.

To avoid this, pay close attention to the features and fixtures you’re considering.

Ensure there is at least one common trait between all your light fixtures. For instance, this could be the same style, glass type, material, or finish. Using products with matching traits creates a more cohesive and finished look.

Transform Your Outdoor Space With a Focal Point

Using a focal point in your outdoor space will prevent you from going off the deep end as you’re combining different fixtures and elements. Focal points are areas of interest or emphasis meant to capture the viewer’s focus.

Focal points give viewers an area where they can rest their eyes and enjoy their visual creation. These areas are crucial for creating a striking and inviting space.

When designing your outdoor space, create a focal point using a light fixture. Make sure the other light fixtures and elements don’t distract from your focal point.

You can select statement pieces such as a large chandelier, basketweave pendants, or other specialty lights. Adding smaller lighting fixtures in the surrounding area will support your focal point.

Practice Restraint

Walking through your local home-improvement store will have you enamored with different lights, styles, temperatures, and products. Despite all the different choices, practicing restraint will ensure you create a cohesive space without clutter.

When choosing exterior lighting, it’s best not to try too many things in one area. Choosing one or two of your favorite pieces or designs will create a more cohesive space.

For example, tiki torches, string lights, chandeliers, and pendant lights are all excellent outdoor options. However, mixing all these pieces together will create something closer to a flea market than a backyard retreat.

Choose Complementary Colors

Colors play a huge role in the overall aesthetics of your home and its curb appeal. If you aren’t using lighting fixtures with complementary colors to your home, you’re at risk of creating an incohesive and unappealing space.

Select outdoor lights that match and compliment the color of your home. Matching colors is especially important if you’re adding fixtures to the side of your house that’s facing the public.

For instance, if your home is painted a neutral shade, choose fixtures that come in a lighter or darker hue. If you want to add specialty lights to your orange-colored gazebo, choose fixtures in similar shades.

Think About The Size and Placement

It’s important to consider the size and location of your outdoor space when choosing light fixtures. Lights that are too small will go unnoticed, effectively adding nothing to the space. Light fixtures that are too large are at risk of overpowering certain areas.

For the best results, try and keep all your light fixtures on the same scale. Using similar-sized light fixtures will ensure they serve their purpose without taking away from your property or outdoor space.

Use Opposite Metals

Metal finishes are a popular option when it comes to exterior light fixtures. Metal fixtures are more likely to be scratch and chip-resistant, which adds to their overall longevity. Not to mention, this style of light fixture is budget-friendly and works well with nearly any home design.

With this style of design, opposites definitely attract. This means you can mix, match, and combine metal light fixtures. Consider mixing glossy finishes with matte. Or try mixing warm metal tones with cool shades.

Combining different metal elements and finishes adds layers of visual interest to your outdoor space. Be sure to practice solid design fundamentals when doing so to create cohesive looks.

Does Outdoor Lighting Need to Match the Style of the House?

Closeup of craftsman outdoor and indoor luxury hanging light for interior and exterior illumination at night

To create curb appeal and make your entire home feel fluid and connected, it’s best to match the style of your exterior lighting to the rest of your house. Outdoor lighting makes an incredibly large impact on the aesthetic of your home and the mood of the space.

When you blend these elements with the rest of your style, you ensure your home feels harmonious and clean.

Here are a few examples of common outdoor lighting styles:

Traditional: Traditional outdoor lighting and home designs tend to have ornate designs and details. Curved hooks, flourishes, and other elegant features define the traditional design. Colonial and Craftsman home designs can do well with traditional style lighting.

Contemporary: Contemporary design features streamlined and minimalist aesthetics. Contemporary lighting tends to include geometric touches, adding symmetry, consistency, and cleanliness. This style of lighting goes well with modern home designs.

Transitional: Transitional light fixtures are a good mix of traditional and contemporary designs. Transitional design isn’t as ornate as traditional models. However, transitional design isn’t too simple compared to contemporary. This style of light fixture is perfect if you’re looking for something versatile.

Should Your Outdoor Lighting Match?

So, does your outdoor lighting need to match? Should you opt for black pendant lights that don’t reflect your personality? Not necessarily. It’s up to the homeowner to decide what style of exterior lighting they want.

However, using complementary colors, designs, and materials creates a more cohesive and fluid design. Matching outdoor light fixtures adds curb appeal, increasing your property value.

You can use outdoor lighting to create unique spaces, each serving its own unique purpose. Considering your own style, location, and needs will ensure you’re choosing light fixtures that create a harmonious and fluid design.

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