Pop quiz: What do the lights on your front porch look like? If you're drawing a blank, don't beat yourself up too much — chances are, whatever fixtures came with the property (or were installed by the past owners) are entirely forgettable. In fact, we'd hazard a guess that the only people who can accurately describe their outdoor lights from memory are probably those who picked them out themselves.
But it doesn't have to be this way! Replacing light fixtures is one of our favorite weekend tune-ups throughout the house because it's relatively easy to accomplish (and, if you're renting, it's one of those rare home improvements that you can bring with you when you leave). Outdoor lighting is no exception — in fact, it makes even more of an impact on your home's overall look and feel because it's one of the first things guests come in contact with when approaching your home.
We've rounded up nine of our all-time favorite sources for distinctive, stylish outdoor lighting options, from sconces and pendants to path lights and lanterns (and even some that defy categorization). Now you're only a few clicks away from brightening up your entire home's look — from the outside, in.
From sophisticated statement pendants to hardworking sconces and twinkly string lights, One King's Lane has a robust outdoor lighting category to suit every type of alfresco entertaining.
Is that a vintage estate sale find? Nope, it's just another retro-cool discovery from Rejuvenation. The architecturally inspired site has more than a few antique-y outdoor semi-flush pendants and sconces that will make your guests do a double-take, and add serious curb-appeal to your home.
If you're in the mood to splurge, we can't recommend Perigold enough. Any outdoor light you choose from its eclectic and elevated selection will instantly become the conversation piece of your outdoor area — just take a look at these swoon-worthy "can't believe they're outdoor-friendly" hanging lanterns if you don't believe us.
4. Birch Lane
Farmhouse-chic fans, rejoice: Birch Lane's outdoor offerings all seem like something Joanna Gaines would approve of — and most styles come in a variety of finishes so you can brush up on your trendy metal-mixing right from the front door.
Not to play favorites, but it's no secret we've got a major soft spot for Schoolhouse Electric. It manages to pack just as much personality into its outdoor lighting as its designer-favored indoor fixtures, so your home can make a strong first impression. If you're a fan of the midcentury look (or if you just love color), Schoolhouse will deliver the goods.
6. Lamps Plus
What's in a name? Lamps Plus not only has an unrivaled selection when it comes to outdoor fixtures, but its stock is also pretty budget-friendly, without looking inexpensive. Whatever shape strikes your fancy, you're likely to find at least a few affordable options that mimic your inspo at Lamps Plus, from urban industrial styles to more traditional and ornate ones.
Shades of Light is another super-focused super-source for all things illumination. Because of its wide range of price points to fit any redecorating project, we tend to turn here first when looking for outdoor options. Plus, it has one of the most robust outdoor hanging light categories we've seen, with unique drum-shade silhouettes that look like something we'd expect to find in a boho living room rather than out on the veranda. (Talk about bringing the indoors out.)
We're big fans of any online shop that does one thing and does it exceptionally well. Case in point: Lumens. Lighting is the name of the game for this shop, and its outdoor category doesn't disappoint. Whether you're searching for a standard outdoor fixture or something more off-the-wall (literally), like pathway lighting, lanterns, portable LED torches, or even outdoor floor lamps (yep, that's a thing), look no further.
9. Joss & Main
Boho wicker pendant lights? Check. Cape Cod-style lanterns? Check. Funky decorative snowflake string lights? Check. Have we made our point yet? Joss & Main doesn't skimp when it comes to outdoor lighting. In fact, the toughest part of picking a new fixture for your front porch or back patio will undoubtedly be narrowing down all the eye-catching options.
Emily Bihl is a freelance writer and sometimes-songwriter who can invariably be found rearranging furniture in a domicile somewhere along the Mississippi River. She lives with her black labrador Selkie and a small army of homemade ceramics, and has not willingly closed a browser tab since 2011.