Weddings and events are shaped by a chorus of elements, from the venue itself to the food on the table. However, many parties and gatherings can blend together for guests. If you want to distinguish your corporate party from the next or your wedding from every other, you must have a light bulb moment.
Lighting is one of the easiest ways to set an event a part from the others. It creates drama, effect and atmosphere if it is carried out properly. Lighting turns up the volume or rather brightness of your event.
If you are looking for a lighting company or specialist to brighten up your wedding or holiday party, it is essential to hire the right person for the job, one that doesn’t short circuit on you half-way through the planning process. Before you make arrangements, be sure to follow these tips for hiring a lighting company to ensure your shindig has that extra glow.
Be Cautious of the Venue’s Recommendations
Most venues have a list of vendors that they have worked with in the past. They end up making the recommendations list of that estate or event location. However, when it comes to lighting vendors, you need to proceed with caution if you don’t want to overspend. Lighting can be very expensive depending on the company you select. For example, for my wedding, my venue had a list of recommended vendors of lighting that were priced for the most affluent members of the country club. While my venue might recommend them in general, their price wasn’t right for my wedding.
As you should explore those lighting recommendations from your venue, you don’t want to only stick to that list. You should find a company that is right for your vision, style and price point. At the same time, the venue’s recommendations might sway you, as the company will know your space and how to work with it.
Don’t Forget To See Your Venue in the Light of Your Event
If you visit a site to host your corporate holiday party or perhaps even your wedding, you are probably visiting during the day. In the process, you see your venue in a light that your event probably won’t have. You need to see your venue in the light, meaning the time in which your event will be held.
By seeing your estate or venue at the exact time of your event, you will gain a better sense of how the space looks at that time of day. You might find that your big lighting plans wouldn't be seen at that outdoor dinner at dusk in the summer when you see the exact lighting for that time. This will help you plan your lighting accordingly so that you don’t over or under spend in the lighting department.
Know Your Lights
When you meet with a lighting specialist, you should be somewhat informed on what kinds of lighting you want. There are a number of terms you should know when you are figuring out your vision for the space.
Uplighting or color wash lighting involves light washing a room. Some couples select a color in their wedding’s theme for uplighting. One of the advantages to this type of lighting is that you can easily highlight the architectural touches of your space.
Another popular lighting term to have in your arsenal is pin spot lighting. Companies will use pin spot lighting when you want to focus attention or light directly on an object like a centerpiece. This type of lighting helps certain elements of your event stand out.
Lighting specialists might also throw monogram or pattern lighting at you. This type of lighting helps you add a personal touch to dance floors or walls. For example, a corporate party could feature the company’s logo on a floor or wall through light. This type of lighting is achieved with a stencil placed over a light to project the design of the pattern.
Especially in the case of corporate holiday soirees, you might want to play on the holiday aspect with string lights. String lights are not just your average twinkle lights anymore. Lighting specialists can offer you a wealth of options from market lights to lantern string lights. These lights can be used to wrap around objects, especially outdoors if you need to add some more interest and cheer to your event.
Engaged couples and also corporate party organizers should not forget about the most basic lighting, candles. Candlelight can be more budget friendly if you don’t want to spend a lot on lighting.
Have a Bright Meeting with Your Lighting Company
If you hire a lighting company for your wedding or event when they haven’t seen the space, you could encounter any number of problems. A brighter idea would be to meet with your lighting company at your venue. Not only do you need to communicate your vision for the event but you also need to see if your prospective company can handle the space. You will be more informed as to what is doable and what isn’t for the venue.
A walk through of your venue with your lighting company is also important as they can see where the fixed lighting of the venue lurks and compose a plan around it. You can let your lighting company in on your vision while at the same time hear their suggestions. Hiring blindly without having your company see the space might end up costing you in the long run.
Seek Out Samples and Read Reviews
Some lighting companies charge by the square footage while others will charge you per string of lights that you use. One of the only ways to decide if a lighting company is worth your money is by reading reviews from other customers. If the choir of voices don’t seem to think the company was worth the price, it is best to move on to brighter pastures.
In addition to reading reviews, you will also need to ask for samples of your company’s work. Their portfolio needs to show how diverse the company can be. You should ask not just to see what they have done from one wedding, but several.
Also, if you are planning a certain type of event such as a company holiday gathering, you should ask to see samples for that type of event. By seeing what your lighting company has done in the past, you can make a more informed decision about whether their style fits in to what you have envisioned.
Deciding on the right lighting company for your wedding or event can mean the difference between a lackluster occasion and one that truly sparkles. Without careful consideration, your special occasion could be left in the dark. However, by making use of a few tips and tricks, you can make the brightest decision on what company to hire.
Did you enlist lighting experts to make your event shine? What other tips would you add to the list when hiring a lighting company for your wedding or event? Share your ideas with us in the comments below.