How to make DIY string light planters {for heavy lights!} from Thrifty Decor Chick

How to make DIY string light planters {for heavy lights!} from Thrifty Decor Chick



Good day my close friends! I’ve been energized to share this job with you! Putting in these outdoor lights has been on my list because we moved in nearly 3 yrs in the past. 

Hanging string lights under pergola
How to hang string lights from trees

This write-up may contain affiliate one-way links for your convenience. 

We like these outside string lights in unique. They are sturdy, industrial-grade strands that hold up to anything. We stored them up in rain, wind and snow and they nonetheless seem/perform fantastic today. 

It helped that we had trees large sufficient to hold the weight of these — they are heavier than your ordinary outside lights, but once again…they last forever.

Being aware of we were being going to cling them about the new patio, I grabbed a pair boxes of the lights previous yr. I was genuinely hoping to get them up very last tumble, but it did not take place: 
Long backyard patio with fire pit

Since we really don’t have trees close to the patio however (and it would be a long time before they’d be sturdy adequate to hold the light-weight strands), we experienced to figure out a different alternative. 

I have been investigating this for a yr mainly because it was so critical for this to a.) be useful, b.) appear excellent and c.) not expense a fortune. I gathered facts from a bunch of tutorials I uncovered and then we experienced to make some much more changes at the end I’ll share with you. (Trace: the tutorials we located didn’t get the job done for the heavier lights!) 

Let’s get begun! I will checklist ALL of the goods you are going to need to have at the stop of the write-up, but here are the step by stage guidance. 

Stage 1: Gather the planters you’d like to use. 

Some of the tutorials I observed used wood wine barrel planters — but the types I identified possibly had large holes already drilled into the bottom or they were not tremendous durable. I was apprehensive the concrete would ooze out in between the slats of wood. 

I acquired three plastic planters for this challenge awhile back, but I determined they were being also tall and not extensive — you want anything that has a vast foundation.  We returned people and got these plastic barrel planters in its place: 
Plastic barrel planters

They even now have that wine barrel seem but should maintain up significantly much better!

I in the beginning had 3 planters, but we ended up working with two when we figured out how quite a few toes of lights we experienced. 

Step 2: Safe the poles in the planters.

Following, we grabbed 8 foot 4×4’s for each planter. The speedy established cement established actually quick — but this subsequent move was useful. I installed “L” brackets onto the base of each 4×4 and then screwed them into the bottom of the planters ahead of incorporating the cement: 

Using 4x4s for outdoor lights

This will not hold them tremendous safe (at least with plastic planters), so you cannot enable go just nonetheless — but they do enable! 

I’ve never use cement but it was incredibly easy! We utilized two 50 pound bags of Quikrete for each planter:

quick setting concrete for planters

We included and combined a person bag at a time — you increase the cement and then spray drinking water. You really don’t require a ton of h2o — just combine as properly as achievable so there is certainly no dry cement left: 

How to make poles for outdoor lights

For the 1st planter it took 3 of us since I was anxious the 4×4 wouldn’t maintain at to start with. But the cement sets up so quick, it just took two of us for the second 1. 

Use a amount to check the 4×4 through this process. It will not have to be beautifully straight — bear in mind you can regulate the mulch or dirt beneath the planters to assist make the poles straight. 

Within 15-20 minutes it wasn’t budging: 

Cement planters for outdoor string lights

You can stain or paint the 4×4’s ahead of environment them in the cement, but I am much too impatient for that. I required to get them up! It was quick to get them stained just after the reality: 

Jacobean stain on outdoor poles

Stage 3: Protected the planters into the ground (if wanted).

Soooo this aspect went actually effectively and was way simpler than we believed it would be. That is, until finally we started pulling on the 4x4s a bit…and we realized there was no way these wouldn’t idea about from the body weight of the lights. (Even with 100 lbs . of cement!)

The lights usually are not Mad major…but we ended up draping them across the patio, so the length provides some rigidity. We had our handyman come out to acquire a seem (he was encouraging me hold the lights anyway) and he arrived up with a amazing resolution. 

He discovered extensive metal steel flats at the hardware retailer that he pounded into the floor and then secured into the cement portion of the pots: 

Securing cement planters into ground

You’ll want a stone/cement drill bit to get into the established cement. You can also do this although the cement is drying with a regular drill little bit. 

He connected four to each and every planter and it labored like a charm!! Good. They really don’t budge. I am surprised the planters in the tutorials I observed continue to be upright — but as I mentioned, if you are placing them nearer with each other or utilizing light-weight light-weight strands, they will almost certainly work. (Our lights are strung 20+ feet about the patio.)

Mainly because I was filling the remaining section of each planter with soil and plants, I drilled a number of holes into the sides of the planters so h2o isn’t going to pool up within: 

Drainage holes for planters

I discovered a flat of these succulents at Lowe’s — it was SO simple to plant! You can possibly just lay them down over the dust or tear them into items like I did: 

DIY poles in planters for lights

Hopefully they do well out there! One flat was $21 and I had loads for the two planters. In the spring I’ll increase petunias that will spill in excess of the sides. 

Stage four: Dangle the lights with components.

Up coming it was time to get the lights hung! I acquired this gentle hanging package final year and it experienced anything we needed:
Outdoor light hanging kit

We had a good deal of hardware and wire leftover. If you are draping the lights a lot less than seven toes, you can just hang them by by themselves. The brand endorses that you use wire for distances lengthier than that. 

The package arrives with 150 ft of wire, which was way a lot more than we essential. The outside lights we use are from Feit and are 48 feet every. So you can expect to just have to map out the design you want based on your area and how extensive your lights are. I understood wherever we desired to get started (the corner of the patio so we could entry a plug), and I positioned the planters (before we additional cement) in which we wished them to drape:

How to hang outdoor string lights
How to hang outdoor lights without trees

It really is challenging to identify accurately how significantly you may use, so we knew the placement of the final attachment to the again of the dwelling would count on how significantly of the lights ended up left, if that makes feeling. We thought it would reach to the corner of the household, but alternatively we experienced to transfer it in a bit. This produced it so we did not have any extra lights/wire hanging down. 

It is SO stunning and even better than I imagined!:

DIY string light cement planters tutorial

We hung the wire and then made use of small zip ties to connect the lights. You can string the wire by means of the holes in the lights beforehand, but the zip ties just after was easier. This way you can secure the wire to start with and then add the lights right after the fact.

I constantly lean to a more simple seem so I failed to want this to get far too occupied. We could have added extra planters and lights and had them go back again and forth several occasions…but I prefer this! If you want much more, go for it!: 

Patio with DIY outdoor lights in planters
I shared all about these amazing industrial cafe lights right here — in the few a long time considering the fact that that put up, they now make them in LED in its place. This will save on energy — just about every bulb is only a person watt. 

The previous sets came with a ton of extra bulbs due to the fact they ended up glass. These are plastic so they only give a handful of further (also due to the fact they’re going to final Substantially more time than the incandescent version). The LED model is also lighter (fat clever) than the types we used years back. 

I don’t constantly like LED lights, particularly outside. I favor a warmer mild, but as you can see, these aren’t stark at all. Quite heat and welcoming: 

How to hang heavy outdoor string lights
covered porch and patio with lighting

DIY planters for heavy string lights

Make positive you tighten the bulbs well — if they aren’t performing that’s normally the trouble.

We were being going to have a switch operate down the porch column so we could easily convert these off and on, but our handyman reminded me that a remote switch would operate just as perfectly. We saved SO substantially cash applying that as a substitute of getting electrical work completed.

This is the distant we made use of — just plug it into the outlet, then plug the lights into the system. You can transform the lights on and off from inside or outside the house simply. This is a search at the lights when it is really totally darkish:

DIY cafe lights over patio

Do you have rather lights hung outdoors? They make everything really feel a little much more magical. 🙂 

Below are the links and merchandise that will be useful if you try this project!:
String light tutorial if you have trees
Industrial grade string lights
Plastic barrel planters
A few foot metal flats for securing the planters
Light hanging hardware kit
Quikrete cement
Remote regulate outside plug/swap

You can use this impression to pin this challenge for later on:

DIY cafe lights in cement planters


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