The buzzword in outdoor lighting trends is innovation, resulting in products that are functional, practical and cleverly designed. With the varied selection of lights on offer, creating a magical outdoor focal point could not be easier. From traditional lanterns to freestanding lighting pieces with stylish contours and minimalistic design — achieving a laid-back ambience is more enjoyable than ever.
Glowing cubes or biomorphic shapes are particularly popular this season. One designer who is harnessing this trend is Sven Muller from Sven M Design Architects and Interiors, who tells InsideOut that the UAE is adapting to a more modern style of architectural lighting as people are beginning to appreciate and understand design better than before. His cube lighting concept, which he designed earlier this year, has received rave reviews for its stylish functionality. He says: "The product is all about creating an atmosphere with light. It's the type of light that brings out the dull corners in any exterior and interior setting." Desert River and Foscarini are also advocates of this modernist architectural style as seen in their latest collections.
The antithesis to this über contemporary trend is a return to traditional shapes and pendants. Lebanese founder of Kafka Goes Pink, Fady Saliba, is best known for his Arabian-inspired lighting pieces and recommends using candles, lanterns and hanging lights to achieve a warm and intimate atmosphere. All of his products are 100 per cent handmade and are available at O'de Rose and Bloomingdale's Home. "You have to know how to select the right lighting products in order to create a marriage of different styles," he says. "Your choice of lighting has to complement your outdoor furniture; it's okay to use a traditional style of light alongside a contemporary deck chair." The key to achieving this balance is to embrace the eclectic and work within your space restrictions. Small balconies and terraces are perfect spots for tabletop lanterns, hurricane lamps and hanging pendants, while floor-standing sculptural lights are best displayed in larger gardens that have space for these gorgeously glowing showpieces.