We’ve collected a range of design and safety tips and tricks to help you beautify your home, business or street with dazzling lights like a pro. You can also view the below tips and tricks in an online booklet or download the Christmas Lighting Tips and Tricks PDF.

  • Before you begin decorating your home exterior, begin by working out a plan as to the type of look you would like to achieve. Would you like to create a classic/traditional look through decorating with warm white lighting? Or would you like to achieve a fun, colourful mix of multicolours. What type of Christmas lights would you like to hang? These could be twinkle, static, icicles, festoon, etc. Also consider working with up lighting through flood and spot lights. These types of lights can come in a range of white or colour changing options. Featured up lighting assists in lighting tall and hard to access trees, shrubs and hard exteriors. No matter how simple or over the top you would like to style your exterior – it always helps to begin with a plan.
  • Once you have a plan of the type of look you would like to achieve. Look for areas around the exterior that will best work as focal points for feature lighting. Some examples: Trees lining the driveway would look great with up lights and or festoon suspended loosely between branches whereas a cone shaped tree or pine tree, would work well to feature as a natural Christmas tree lit with fairy lighting. Also look for any structural items around the front of your home that could be utilised to feature lighting – arches, columns balustrades and fence lines. Look for areas to add extra sparkle – find inspiration in unexpected places and create a bit of fun by lighting the garden bench seat, letterbox, privacy screens, flower pots or an old bicycle.
  • Apartment living and small spaces can still enjoy the festive spirit by lighting balcony balustrades, plants and hanging pot plants. Today’s latest technology provides alternatives in lighting areas where access to power is difficult. This can be achieved through feature lighting powered by solar or battery.
  • Before you begin the install, measure and check the areas you wish to light and evaluate your power situation. You will then be able to ensure you purchase and install with the correct length of strand lighting and power leads.
  • Ensure all electricals are specified for outdoor use.
  • Before you decorate your home’s, exterior or trim your Christmas tree check that all of your lights are working and replace any faulty strands or bulbs.
  • Visit your local hardware and look for any clips, cable ties, electrical tape and attachment items to assist with safely securing your lighting items.
  • Always install your lights with the set plugged in and switched on as this allows you to preview your work as you go, and ensure that you have not completed a full install of fairy lights only to realise the lights are not working.
  • If this is your first attempt at Christmas lighting start small, lighting two to three items to serve as focal points. Plan ahead and add new displays each year.
  • When you are ready to add Christmas lights to the exterior of your house, start with the highest point and work your way from side-to-side and then down.
  • Work with a partner when hanging Christmas lights. This will ensure safety when you are working on a ladder as well as assisting by having another person working on the ground as a spotter while you are on the ladder.
  • When lighting trees with fairy lighting start at the base and wrap the lights around in a spiral approximately 150 to 200mm apart. If you would like to highlight and illuminate foliage, start at the top and zigzag lights through the centre of the tree, getting wider with the trees shape.
  • When lighting Christmas trees, topiaries small shrubs and ground cover work in a zig zag pattern as opposed to creating harsh straight lines. Working with net lighting can also assist with installation time and even coverage. Try to hide wires and leads by tucking into the foliage.
  • Create depth and height by using up lighting on featured elements and trees.
  • Create a dynamic display by selecting specific feature areas to work in moving and twinkling lights. Be select and try not to overpower with too many crazy moving lights.
  • Whether to work with multi-colour, cool white or classic white lights depends on the overall theme and look you wish to achieve. Warm white lights work well in a traditional, rustic, romantic or tailored settings. Cool white lighting works well in contemporary settings. Coloured lighting can add all the shimmer and fun that you expect to find in a magical setting. However, it is also important, to show some restraint through colour blocking certain featured elements of your display. For example, you may choose to highlight the gateway entrance and exterior columns of your home in a single light colour such as warm white or magenta whilst displaying multicolour fairy lights throughout low shrubs and topiaries.
  • Lastly, once you complete each area, stand back and view the lit item, look for any dark areas or way wood light strands that need attention. Ensure, that you are creating continuity throughout the overall exterior landscape.

Energex Safety Tips

  • It’s that time of year where we dig out the decorations and add some fun and sparkle into our homes. It’s important to remember that many of our favourite decorations carry a risk of electrical injury if not used carefully. Take a few minutes to read our decorating safety tips: