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Making Venues Versatile with Lighting

One of the key elements in making an event trully customized to your client is transforming their venue space. There are plenty of ways to do this, whether with decor or otherwise, but bear in mind that the venue itself may have restrictions on what you may and may not change. Keeping this in mind, lighting trends and recent developments in lighting technology allow for a complete transformation of the event space, minus the extensive installations you may have had to contend with in the past.

Photo courtesy Jenny DeMarco Photography –

Video mapping

Video mapping is no longer reserved for luxury celebrations! In the past few years, the technology has become incredibly accessible and more affordable for many, using projection methods to completely alter the layout of a space. Regardless of venue, this lighting design strategy can cast patterns on both walls and dance floors, using them as a blank canvas to distort reality and add more dimension. Think 3D textures and shapes used as décor, all with the usage of light and color.

We’ve even seen video mapping take over food and beverage, elevating a plain white wedding cake with various designs and embellishments.

Neon signage

We like to joke that neon signs aren’t just for the Kardashians anymore. What was once considered a pricey option for customization is now a cost-friendly way to personalize your event lighting and create a dramatic effect as a reception evolves from day to night. Commonly incorporated within the backdrop of a trendy photo booth setup, we’re seeing every color of the rainbow used to complement the couple’s palette, as well as overall adding a modern feel to any venue.

It’s recommended that couples use this opportunity to get especially creative with custom signage, whether it be using their wedding hashtag, initials, or shared last name to make a bold statement. Placing this behind their sweetheart table is another chic way to draw the eye to the focal point of the room.

Ambient lighting

If your couple isn’t entirely pleased with the on-site lighting of the property they’ve selected, encourage them to create their own! There are many ways to establish ambient lighting to make the space more versatile with their desired theme. Thankfully, most lighting can be controlled through apps, so as the night goes on, the lights can be dimmed accordingly.

Photo courtesy Jenny DeMarco Photography –

Consider using various candles (battery-operated or real) in centerpieces or even elaborate displays along the table runners to add an intimate glow. Doing so can eliminate the need for venue lighting entirely, and you won’t have to worry about harsh flashback in wedding photos.

At times, it can be difficult for a client to find a venue that checks all of their must-haves. Elevating and creating a versatile environment for them with multi-dimensional lighting is one of the best ways you can take an average event space and make it extraordinary!

Opening photo courtesy Meghan McSweeney Photography

Kevin Dennis

Kevin Dennis is the editor of WeddingIQ and the owner of Fantasy Sound Event Services, a full-service event company based in Livermore, California. Dennis is the past president for Silicon Valley NACE, and national vice president for WIPA.