Festoon lights (also known as café lights or party lights) are those traditional, big bulb garland lights you see hanging at fairgrounds in American movies from the 1950s. They’re the oversized glass globes, usually in warm whites or multi coloured, and they’re so very in right now. Previously only widely available in the States, outdoor festoon lighting has absolutely taken off in the UK in recent years so if you haven’t got involved yet, now’s the time.
Originally used to describe wreaths and garlands hung at celebrations and banquets, the word “festoon” (from the Latin festum, meaning “feast”) actually refers to the shape the lights make when hung loosely in a “swag”. Traditionally, these festoon lights have been made from glass and although that looks lovely, it does pose a few problems: 1) glass filament bulbs get very hot during operation, so aren’t hugely practical for use around children, pets or adults who’ve had a tipple or two, 2) they cost a fortune to run, and 3) they’re so easy to smash, no matter how careful you are.
The solution is a super-safe combination of energy efficient LED’s and translucent plastic cases, designed to perfectly imitate the nostalgic look of traditional café lights. All the charm of glass festoon lights, none of the hassle – always cool to the touch, super cheap to run, virtually unbreakable.