The Importance of Lighting: Chapter 3

December 13th, 2013 egreenfield

You’re having lunch with a young couple in New Jersey, in the early pre-planning stages of their wedding. So the conversation, up to a certain point, is typical of the pre-planning stages. There is talk of possible venues, flowers, food and so forth.


As you poke at your grilled vegetable salad, you casually mention what kind of lighting they have in mind. That is when an eerie silence sweeps into the conversation, like a storm cloud. The young couple eyes one another, as if they’ve been through a giant tragedy of some kind. Clearly, they have a secret they’re not telling you.


You put down your fork. “Is something the matter?” you ask.


The bride-to-be speaks first. “We went to a wedding a couple of months ago. The lighting was awful.”


Her fiancé adds, “The reception took place in a gymnasium attached to the church. The only light it got was from the candles on each table and a few at the head of the entrance.”


She cuts him off, “Just really, really bad. Really dark. The pictures were…”


“Say no more,” you say.


You’ve heard similar horror stories before, of wedding receptions ruined by the lack of lighting or bad lighting. Couples just seem to underestimate the importance of lighting. Lighting can make or break any party, event and reception. So much is spent on décor and then it’s too dark for anyone to see!


An important part of your job is educating people on the importance of lighting…as it provides three things: energy, ambiance and a wow factor.


Lighting is, of course, necessary at your party and event. The right kind of lighting complements decorations and encourages your guests to dance. It also sets the tone and mood of the whole shebang. Most people are timid, shy let’s say, and won’t dance if the lighting isn’t inviting.  The perfect lighting takes any event to that next ambient level, giving guests not just the courage to dance, but the sense of freedom that eradicates any self-conscious feelings.


You can even get creative with the lighting and use it for branding. You can also use up lighting to clothe the walls and blast the room with specific colors. If you use up lighting, you can provide a wash towards walls and ceilings, giving the atmosphere an injection of strength.


The colors will seem stronger; transforming any room into a lush Amazon of warms and cools. With these warms and cools, you can color coordinate. Everything working as one – decorations, tables, chairs, etc. – to provide a cohesive aesthetically pleasing explosion, an unforgettable time for you and your guests.


Additionally, you can use lighting to project images, as in the word aspire in the image to the left. It’s also a fabulous way to create either a thematic moment or utilize it for visual marketing goals. Just look at the snowflakes below. Using the light to project such a wintry image is a great way to make any event all the more seasonal and festive. In short, blue and greens offer a very cold environment – perfect for winter wonderland events.


Why then is lighting so often overlooked? It shouldn’t be, especially considering that the lighting world has undergone a transformation. Gone (almost) are the days of fluorescent and ineffective. We have strolled into an era of LED lights. LEDs are cost-effective and environmentally friendly. Because of this, LEDs are gaining more prominence when it comes to lighting events, such as weddings and sweet sixteens. You should dedicate the same amount of time on lights that you do for food, flowers or other decorations.


So, with that said, the lighting SHOULD be inviting. It is, after all, crucial to any event’s success – an event’s flow, the feel. It really relates to the energy in the room but changing the lighting as the event progresses.


Amber lighting makes everyone look beautiful just like romantic candle lighting. [see image to the right]


Lighting can also be used to give something very specific a dramatic “wow.”


Pinspotting centerpieces within a dark room is paramount to bring your creation to life.  [see image to the left]


Although we primarily serve the NYC, NJ or Connecticut areas, Kraft Events will happily help plan your event no matter the location. Remember, you will need an event planner that understands the importance of lights, not to mention someone who understands the ebb and flow of mood!


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