Wedding Lighting Ideas

How Do You Light up a Wedding Reception?

We put a lot of thought into every aspect of a wedding, from the cake to the flowers to the invitations with our monogram. It's a fact that can't be overstated, though: lighting is the most crucial part of your wedding's aesthetic. And while that may sound more practical than entertaining, hear us out: What will eventually illuminate your ideal venue, perfect your photographs, and keep the party going are the bulbs and candles you choose. Consequently, lighting is crucial, being an integral part of both your financial plan and the overall design of your wedding day. Of course, that doesn't mean you can't enjoy yourself; in fact, you should. You should consider the process of selecting, arranging, and installing the night's illumination no different from the process of implementing any other design feature.

And by "style," we don't just mean whether you're going for a sleek, vintage, or glitzy look. Instead, stop what you're doing and give some thought to your priorities before coming up with a lighting scheme. If you are a gourmand bride who dreams of a wine-fueled night under the stars, you might want to decorate your outdoor dinner with string lights over the dining area or a long line of taper candles down the centre of the table. Both would draw attention to the evening's main attraction—the food—and keep people at the table well after dessert is served. Yes, the same goes for you, flower girls. Put them on display with lots of votives if you're going to spend that much money per flower. Get the party started by hanging a disco ball from the ceiling or stringing paper lanterns over the dance floor if you're already dressed for the occasion.

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Table of Contents

What is Mood Lighting?

It's customary for a Mood Lighting package to include up-lights, pinspots, and textured lighting.

Up-Lights

LED Up-Lights are installed all the way around a room, illuminating the walls and ceiling and drawing attention to the room's architectural details. The end product is a beautiful room that will have your guests talking for years to come, while the original area remains unchanged and boring. You have a wide variety of colours from which to choose; perhaps you'd want to start with a static colour to complement your bridal colour scheme, and then transition into a slow colour fade change to establish a disco-like atmosphere after the wedding festivities have concluded.

Pinspot Lighting

Using pinspots to illuminate your event is the cherry on top. Pinspot lights focus on a specific area, such as a table or an especially prominent item like a wedding cake, to illuminate it adequately. When Pinspot Lighting is incorporated into the design, the main venue lights can be dimmed to further accentuate the Up-Lights and Pinspot effects.

Textured Lighting

Texture Lighting is used by designers to give flat walls depth and character, transforming them into works of art. The character can "raise" the area by creating patterns on the dance floor, ceiling, walls, or any other surface by slicing up a light source.

Wedding Lighting Ideas

Why Is Wedding Mood Lighting Important?

  • When your guests enter your room, you want them to be wowed by the atmosphere you've created with the perfect ambience lighting.
  • The most economical method of completely altering the atmosphere of a space is by means of mood lighting.
  • It's a more cost-effective alternative to renting wall draperies, especially for less-established venues and do-it-yourself event spaces.
  • You have complete freedom when choosing the hues for your big day.
  • Feature the building's design elements at the event
  • Faded wallpaper can be replaced with a colourful mural.
  • Throws light exactly where it's needed
  • Turning off the house lights lets the DJ use more elaborate lighting effects on the dance floor.

Power up

Get a summary of the venue's electricity possibilities before you and the groom start debating the aesthetics of light bulbs and chandeliers. First, find out what they have to offer and the standard lighting package they have. So then the question becomes what they will actually permit. Inquire about the number of available circuits and amps, keeping in mind the power needs of your band, DJ, caterer, and photographer, as well as whether or not open flames are permitted, places are available to anchor suspension cables for overhead lighting, or path lighting must be laid down from the venue to the restrooms or parking lot. From there, you can deduce your creative limitations and explore potential compromises.

Check out our post on Important Tips on Choosing a Wedding Venue.

Mix Old and New

Newer LED bulbs provide a warmer, more natural light than their predecessors, thus they are quickly replacing incandescent bulbs as the prefered choice for decorative lighting. LED lights consume up to 90% less energy than standard bulbs, making them invaluable in situations when electricity is scarce, and because they are battery-operated, they can be easily arranged to best suit your needs. However, excessive usage should be avoided. A party lighted solely by LED lights, even at the "optimal" warmth of 2700k, will not have the same radiance as one lit by a combination of LED and traditional bulbs. An attractive appearance is in store for you. Something's missing that makes it interesting. It's possible to control the colour temperature, but you'll need to take special care if you want your wedding to have a cosy, romantic atmosphere.

Make Space Your Own

Lighting can be used to highlight or conceal specific characteristics of a room by focusing the viewer's attention to specific points. Chandeliers can be hung from oak tree branches or suspended from redwoods to provide a dramatic focal point above the dance floor, even if the event is not held under a tent.

Our list of Melbourne Wedding Decorators have you covered for all your wedding day decoration needs.

Light up the Areas Around You

After you've lit the space immediately around your tables, dance floor, and band, consider the rest of the property. You can welcome a larger number of guests by illuminating the trees and neighbouring structures. Buildings near a tent reception area should be given a gentle wash before the wedding. Instead of being in a lighted tent in a dark outdoor space, it gave a nice glow and felt like [space] extended beyond the tent. illumination of adjacent vegetation as well All of this weekend is set against that backdrop. It makes a huge impact as a backdrop.

Dos and Don'ts of Wedding Lighting

Read these easy-to-follow recommendations for wedding lighting before you sign any contracts with a lighting designer.

Do: Hire a Professional

It's no secret that lighting is a complex technological subject. Therefore, it is not suggested that you handle or even organise your wedding lighting on your own. In any case, it's fine to do some of the work yourself; for instance, why not make your own mason jar lights? If you want your wedding day to go well and without incident, hire a professional lighting designer. A lighting professional should be on hand in case any problems arise or additional lighting is required.

Don’t: Forget to See What Your Venue Has to Offer

Check to see if the wedding location includes lighting in their package before shelling out money for a separate lighting company. It is best to let the venue take care of the lighting if they offer everything you want. Your wedding location will have a good idea of which areas to brighten, which to shade, and how much power each area can handle.

Do: Consult Your Vendor

If you want to know what kind of lighting will look best in your venue, you should bring your lighting designer with you on site checks. Your lighting designer will need to know about this because it will change the atmosphere and likely increase the cost of production. Give them a rundown of the overall vibe and style you're going for with the wedding and the theme you've chosen. Finally, be sure to share your wedding lighting budget with the crew so that they can create beautiful ambience without breaking the bank.

Don’t: Forget Your Research

Do your homework before settling on a lighting provider. It is recommended that you shop around for a few different lighting suppliers before making a final decision. Learn more about wedding lighting from articles like this one to acquire ideas and inspiration for your own big day. Learn the lingo used by the lighting industry so you can communicate effectively with suppliers.

Do: Check Your Venue’s Terms and Conditions

Before signing off on whatever the lighting company is offering, make sure you've read the venue's rules. Invite your lighting provider to the venue's meeting if at all possible. It's better to be aware of any lighting limitations at your reception site well in advance of the big day. Do you anticipate using more power, and if so, how much? What sort of lighting fixtures do you recommend? Is there a list of forbidden ones that you could share? Make sure there is no ambiguity in the agreement.

Don’t: Overdo It

In terms of illumination, restraint is of the essence. Extravagant lighting will make your wedding look cheap and ugly instead than elegant. It's not a good idea to use a wide variety of lights at once, especially if they're all various colours. Keeping things straightforward will yield superior outcomes.

Do: Watch the Weather

Pay close attention to the forecast, particularly if your wedding will be held outside. Due to the high electrical current required by lights, leaving them out in the rain is risky business. Prepare for the unexpected by consulting with your lighting provider.

Don’t: Forget to Talk to Your Photographer

The lighting during a wedding is crucial for the photos. If you want your wedding photos to turn out great, it's important to let the photographer know when you've decided on the ambience and lighting for the site.

Your wedding will be spectacular if you can afford to spend money on lighting. The perfect lighting can add warmth, elegance, and drama to any wedding, but it's not necessary for every ceremony. Consider these guidelines when you plan the lighting for your next get-together. Modern uplights can match your décor perfectly. Using DMX controllers and the wonders of LED uplighting, you may dial in precisely the hues you want.

A gathering in a dead room is not likely to be fun for anyone. However, uplighting that is dynamic with colour changes, chases, and strobes can enliven the entire room and get everyone on the dance floor.

Venue Uplighting vs. DJ Uplighting

The uplights at your reception venue are probably preset to one of several colours and will stay there all night long, regardless of how many people dance on the floor. You may want to avoid using constant illumination on your dance floor, as it has the potential to drain the energy of your guests. When the dance starts, the lighting professionals might set up lights of a single colour or in a predefined pattern to set the mood. On the other hand, an in-charge DJ can programme the uplighting to flash and pulse in rhythm to the music. Hiring a DJ who can also manage the event's lights is a wise investment.

illumination for evening events in the open air. An outdoor wedding celebration under a white tent is not complete without uplighting. When it comes to cleanliness, nothing beats a white room because it represents a blank slate waiting to be filled. A change occurs as soon as the lights are turned on. Instantly, the space is bathed in colour, and because most uplights are adjustable, you can focus the light exactly where it's needed (in the middle of the ceiling) for maximum impact.

The spotlight is on you. Customized lighting in the form of a monogram of your names or initials is a wonderful way to set your wedding apart from others. Plates of metal can be etched with practically any design, font, or message to create the modern monogram. For a small surcharge, you can order a custom glass monogram featuring an image of the two of you and a colour scheme to match your existing furnishings. Your personalised light can be used to adorn any surface, from the wall to the dance floor. Investigate your available options.

The illumination of the dance floor. If you can't afford uplighting, dance floor lighting is a less expensive alternative. Five or six different effects, including a disco ball for slow dancing, are typically included in a DJ's light show.

In situations where light is NOT required. If your wedding is held during the day, either outside or in a room with lots of windows, you won't need any extra lighting. When the reception ends at 10 p.m. in the summer, and the sun sets at 9 p.m., it is pointless to spend money on a light show. You can forget about trying to establish the mood with fluorescent lights because they are either on or off, not dimmable. No use in spending money on an extravagant light show when everyone in the room would have to keep their lights on all night. Finally, a light show will not seem as good against a black backdrop as it would against white or light-colored walls.

Seeing a DJ's lighting setup in action is essential for making an informed choice. If he refuses to show his work, get someone else to do it. At your wedding reception, the first impression of the dining room and the fun on the dance floor will be the most memorable parts for your guests. Elegant lighting is a superb first impression maker and can transform the dance floor into a virtual explosion of colour, sound, and activity. If your guests can't stop raving about how much fun they had, then you know you made the right choice.

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Less Is More

You shouldn't rely on a single chandelier to illuminate a large room, yet dim lighting is also undesirable. It's simple to have too much light. You like fewer, smaller, and dimmer points of illumination. String lights are more informal than other types of lighting, so if that's not a dealbreaker, feel free to use them into a more formal design. That's why they'll never go out of style, just like outdoor weddings will always be in vogue. Most people are still on the hunt for a tranquil outdoor evening.

FAQs About Wedding Reception

We typically advise clients to budget $1100-$1300 for a small, one feature wedding. If your wedding fits inside a 40 x 60 tent outside, a simple bistro lighting hang will do the trick. For a mid-sized, multi-feature wedding, you should budget between $1500-$3500. Most weddings fit into this category.

Uplighting is the placement of individual light sources at the base of architectural details or points of interest, typically around the perimeter of a space, to draw attention to those details.

There are many different types of string lights, including twinkle lights, Edison bulbs, paper lanterns, and fairy lights. Most typically cost between $3 and $5 per linear foot, but you may need to pay more for the cost of installation and any extra equipment, like extension cords.

Fairy lights feature tiny LED bulbs on a thin, flexible metal wire that can be bent or shaped to fit around decorations or into tiny spaces. Many LED fairy lights are battery powered with a convenient timer function, however some longer strings have plug in adapters

A kind and thoughtful way of making your request known. Whether you have limited space in your home or simply don't need any more stuff, it's perfectly acceptable to decline gifts at your next event.

Conclusion

The bulbs and candles you pick will create the atmosphere you want for your party, enhance your photographs, and help the festivities last as long as possible. Up-lights, pinspots, and textured lighting are all a part of our Mood Lighting packages. It is common practise to instal LED Up-Lights around the perimeter of a room to shed light on the ceiling and walls. DIY event spaces can save money by using mood lighting instead of renting expensive wall drapes. Pinspot lights are directed in one direction to illuminate a specific surface or object, such as a wedding cake.

When combined with texture lighting, a plain wall can become a work of art. Nowadays, light-emitting diode bulbs (LEDs) are used almost exclusively for decorative lighting, replacing incandescent bulbs. They are battery-operated and can reduce energy consumption by as much as 90% compared to regular bulbs. If you want your wedding to have a warm, romantic atmosphere, moderation is key.

Be sure to ask the venue's designer for recommendations when choosing a lighting service. If the crew knows how much they have to spend, they can create a stunning atmosphere without going overboard. Not: Go crazy with the light switches; moderation is key. The quality of wedding photos greatly depends on the lighting. Think about these suggestions as you arrange the lighting for your next party.

Uplighting can make a wedding feel more intimate, glamorous, and dramatic. It is smart to hire a DJ who can also handle the event's lighting. A wedding monogram is a great way to make your big day unique. Today's monograms are typically etched into metal plates, and these plates can be customised with almost any design, font, or message. Uplighting can be expensive, so if you can't afford it, dance floor lighting is a good alternative.

Elegant lighting is a great way to set the mood and turn the dance floor into a hive of activity. If the informality of string lights isn't a dealbreaker in your design, feel free to incorporate them into a more serious setting.

Content Summary

  • It's a fact that can't be overstated, though: lighting is the most crucial part of your wedding's aesthetic.
  • Consequently, lighting is crucial, being an integral part of both your financial plan and the overall design of your wedding day.
  • Instead, stop what you're doing and give some thought to your priorities before coming up with a lighting scheme.
  • It's customary for a Mood Lighting package to include up-lights, pinspots, and textured lighting.
  • Using pinspots to illuminate your event is the cherry on top.
  • When Pinspot Lighting is incorporated into the design, the main venue lights can be dimmed to further accentuate the Up-Lights and Pinspot effects.
  • When your guests enter your room, you want them to be wowed by the atmosphere you've created with the perfect ambience lighting.
  • The most economical method of completely altering the atmosphere of a space is by means of mood lighting.
  • Get a summary of the venue's electricity possibilities before you and the groom start debating the aesthetics of light bulbs and chandeliers.
  • A party lighted solely by LED lights, even at the "optimal" warmth of 2700k, will not have the same radiance as one lit by a combination of LED and traditional bulbs.
  • Lighting can be used to highlight or conceal specific characteristics of a room by focusing the viewer's attention to specific points.
  • After you've lit the space immediately around your tables, dance floor, and band, consider the rest of the property.
  • It is not suggested that you handle or even organise your wedding lighting on your own.
  • In any case, it's fine to do some of the work yourself; for instance, why not make your own mason jar lights?
  • If you want your wedding photos to turn out great, it's important to let the photographer know when you've decided on the ambience and lighting for the site.
  • Consider these guidelines when you plan the lighting for your next get-together.
  • Customised lighting in the form of a monogram of your names or initials is a wonderful way to set your wedding apart from others.
  • Your personalised light can be used to adorn any surface, from the wall to the dance floor.
  • The illumination of the dance floor.
  • If you can't afford uplighting, dance floor lighting is a less expensive alternative.
  • Five or six different effects, including a disco ball for slow dancing, are typically included in a DJ's light show.
  • In situations where light is NOT required.
  • If your wedding is held during the day, either outside or in a room with lots of windows, you won't need any extra lighting.
  • When the reception ends at 10 p.m. in the summer, and the sun sets at 9 p.m., it is pointless to spend money on a light show.
  • No use in spending money on an extravagant light show when everyone in the room would have to keep their lights on all night.
  • Seeing a DJ's lighting setup in action is essential for making an informed choice.
  • At your wedding reception, the first impression of the dining room and the fun on the dance floor will be the most memorable parts for your guests.
  • Elegant lighting is a superb first impression maker and can transform the dance floor into a virtual explosion of colour, sound, and activity.
  • It's simple to have too much light.
  • You like fewer, smaller, and dimmer points of illumination.
  • String lights are more informal than other types of lighting, so if that's not a dealbreaker, feel free to use them into a more formal design.
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