Published on December 20th, 2011 | by Jules Yap


X-mas Street lighting

IKEA Christmas street lighting in Lisbon, Portugal

Materials: RATIONELL VARIERA, LED lights, car bateries, cables

This year my home town’s (Lisbon, Portugal) city hall had a very nice and cost effective idea for street lighting! Instead of spending the usual bundle of money in x-mas lighting they did a little hack of their own!

This is not my hack, and I’m not sure there has been any artist or Ikea endorsement behind the idea, but I sure liked it a lot!

IKEA Christmas street lighting in Lisbon, Portugal
IKEA Christmas street lighting in Lisbon, Portugal

All it took were a lot of RATIONELL VARIERA plastic bag holders, some LED lights, cable and car batteries….And there you have it!!! X-mas lighting! I’m just sorry I photographed it in the day time and you can see them lightened up!

Merry x-mas everyone!!!! :)

~ Sonia Ferreira, Lisbon, Portugal

I tried searching for a photo of the lights at night but I couldn’t find one online. If anyone has a photo, please send it in or post a link in the comments section. I would love to see how they look at night. ~ Jules

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The Author

Jules Yap

"I am Jules, the engine behind IKEAHackers and the one who keeps this site up and running. My mission is to capture all the wonderful, inspiring, clever hacks and ideas for our much loved IKEA items".

17 Responses to X-mas Street lighting

  1. Anonymous says:

    I dunno in a place where snow is likely to happen, a cold set of out door lights lets you recreate the feeling of a white christmas. Not sure if that’s how they view it, but to me it seems like a nice stand in for giant icicles.

  2. servant74 says:

    In Lisbon Portugal it is 68F now, so snow isn’t an issue. Lights of any kind seem to be used for Christmas anymore. That isn’t bad. Yes, I hope they are saved and reused (or at least disassembled and given to the local thrift store to sell cheaply rather than trashed). Car batteries are OK for low power things that aren’t where perminant power is, especially for ‘low use’ (like a few weeks/yr)

  3. Maïpi says:

    what a very nice idea !
    and the pic by night is wonderful !
    bravo Lisbonne !!!

  4. cparis says:

    Well, people say it was cheap but they don´t know how much they cost, so… :p
    Traditional Christmas lights are rented, and can be reused every year. This one, will probably end in the trash. And car baterries can be more expensive than connecting a cable to public electricity.

    One thing I’m sure: they are not Christmas lighting…. They are fancy street lights, but it has nothing to do with Christmas. They are too cold. IMHO

  5. Jules says:

    Thanks foggue for the photo. It’s lovely! So serene.

  6. Anonymous says:


    Feliz Natal e Próspero Ano Novo – RFOM SLOVENIA

  7. Beate says:

    Read the story behind it….
    If a city has no money, people have to be creativ… like we are ;-) for sure!
    Fröhliche Weihnachten!

  8. Anonymous says:

    Very nice!

  9. Tiago C says:

    This is at Praça do Rossio in downtown Lisbon, Portugal. This year, due to austerity there was no real Christmas lighting throughout most of the country.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Sonia e Jules,
    Feliz Natal e Próspero Ano Novo.

  11. Sonia says:

    Thank you for the night photo foggue! And Merry X-mas everyone

  12. Berit says:

    Thanks, foggue, for the illuminated link.

    I don’t like these in that their light is too cold and sterile–I like a warm light (especially at Christmas) as the illuminations are supposed to be a stand-in for candle light.

    Also, it is quite a substantial use of plastic! I can get over that objection if they reuse them. Basically, I only object if this is to be a one-time-use decoration.

    I applaud the creative, upcycling thinking for low cost and low energy consumption outdoor decor.

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