Grown Up Alternatives to Fairy Lights |
Grown Up Alternatives to Fairy Lights

Grown Up Alternatives to Fairy Lights

Leaving the college dorm look behind

Written by – Team
on April 8th 2019
Our team creates original content, from home tours to DIYs each piece is created especially for readers.

There are two camps. Those that love Christmas lights so much they’ll want to include the twinkly decor all year round, and those that believe fairy lights are best left behind after graduating from your dorm room. If you’re looking for a more grown up alternative to fairy lights, this is the guide for you.


*Just to let you know, this post contains Amazon affiliate links.

Dimmers and Systems

Warm glow at the touch of a button

Different spots of the home can all be controlled with a home lighting system |
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One of the things that’s nice about string lights is how warm and cozy they can make a space feel. But really, if you’re ready to get things sorted you can also get adjustable lighting with a dimmer switch. You can get wireless dimmer kits that you set up with your phone, or if you’re not sure about installing this (looking at you, renters), then pick a dimmer switch you can plug in. There are even smart lighting control systems out there that let you control the ambiance and individual lights all from one spot.


Buy online: Dimmer Switch Starter Kit or Plug-in Dimmer Switch.

Lighting in the kitchen |
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Looking good and smelling good

Candles and overhead lighting show grown up alternatives to fairy lights |
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One of the perks of string lights is that soft, cozy twinkly look. But the strings look ugly during the daytime. Swap out string lights for candles. We like tall candles at different heights, short ones with beautiful smells, or even twinkly tealights set out in different spots. Don’t forget to keep an eye on them, as you shouldn’t leave candles unattended when burning — if you’re concerned, you could opt for LED ones.


Buy online: Soy Candles or Flameless Tea Lights.

Christmas table decor with candle on table top |

Go Big

Pick a lighting fixture that needs no apology

Lighting in the dining room |
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String lights draw attention to themselves as much as they try to hide away in the shadows. When you’re picking out lighting options, why not go for something big and bold! In the photo above, the Mr. Brown Paris lanterns offer that sparkly cozy look while maintaining a clean and classic look.

Branch lighting piece above the dining table |
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Hanging Out

A little DIY, darling

Hanging beads get a grown up look |
image by Ivan Solis

The key to this look by Design Love Fest is simplicity. While we like the way string lighting looks at night, it can be pretty ugly in the daytime. These hanging beaded curtains offer that strung ethereal fairy look without an plug issues. You could also think about plants that drape, or pendant lighting that hangs where you want it to.


Buy online: Wooden Dowel or Wood Beads.

Alternative bathroom lighting |
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Bulbs On Show

Less fairy light and more light bulb

Multi-bulb lighting fixture — a grown up alternative to fairy lights |
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This structured style of pendant lamp has much more oomph than a fairy light, but see how the slick industrial-style of the exposed bulbs is softened by the choice of materials, and the warm textures of the room.


Buy online: Rod Chandelier in Gold or Black Pendant Lamp.

Big globe lighting in Australian living room |
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Are you ready to let go of fairy lights for now and opt for something else? Leave a message below and let us know how your decor project is going! Or follow us on Instagram to see our daily dose of inspiration.


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