Tag Archives: wedding lighting
peacock inspired wedding lighting

Peacock Inspired Wedding Lighting at The Woodlands

peacock inspired wedding lighting

Peacock inspired wedding lighting tied all the decor elements together for this wedding.

This wedding at The Woodlands at Algonkian Park in Cascades, Virginia shows our wireless uplights and monogram lighting combined to pull together all the decor elements for this peacock inspired wedding.

By setting the lights to two different controllers they were able to pull the teal and the blue elements from the wedding colors and paint on the walls with light. The monogram light does a great job of highlighting the beautiful stone wall in the room and personalizing it with the bride and grooms names.

Altogether the lighting helped transform the otherwise fairly plain reception space into a warm, elegant entertaining space worthy of a wedding reception.

Thanks to our friends at Bushnell Photography for the great photo!

 

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wedding reception park hyatt dc wedding lighting

White Uplighting at the Park Hyatt in Washington DC

wedding reception park hyatt dc wedding lighting

White wireless uplights look amazing on the white fabric panels used at the Park Hyatt DC for a wedding ceremony.

White uplighting creates a beautifully elegant look. This photo showcases our wireless uplights used at a wedding reception at the Park Hyatt in Washington DC for a Jewish wedding ceremony.

Power can be hard to come by in hotel ballrooms, many hotels even have restrictions on lighting vendors. Our wireless uplighting is perfect because it doesn’t require power cables or power tie ins so it’s the same as bringing in any other decorations that you might use around the venue and doesn’t require any special electrical know how or knowledge. Literally set the lights down, turn them on, and touch the color you want and walk away.

The wireless uplights look amazing on the white fabric panels that were used throughout the room. Pin-spot lighting illuminates the vases along the aisle making them pop and look fantastic.

Venue: Park Hyatt – Washington, DC
Entertainment: Superlative Events

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Evergreen Country Club Haymarket, VA Wedding Reception Lighting

Will Uplighting Work in a Room With Windows & Natural Light?

Light Blue Uplighting at Evergreen Country Club in Haymarket, Virginia

Uplighting works well even when there are windows letting light into the event space.

Q: The space we are using has a lot of windows, will uplighting look good even with all of the windows and the daylight coming in the room?

A: Uplighting works well even when there are windows and daylight in the space. Using uplighting with natural light can create some really elegant lighting effects.

When you are uplighting with natural light, think about the timeline for the event. Most events start with cocktails earlier where having a less saturated lighting look is an elegant touch. As the evening progresses through dinner the sun sets and less natural light is coming into the room, the effect of the uplighting is enhanced.

Evergreen Country Club Haymarket, VA Wedding Reception Lighting

The effect of uplighting naturally grows stronger as the evening progresses and as the natural daylight in the room fades.

When dinner is over it will naturally feel like the room has been slowly transformed with the natural light leaving the space and the uplighting taking over. This transitions really well for dancing and the rest of the evening.

Venue: Evergreen Country Club – Haymarket, VA

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chauvet zoom gobo 2.0 vs LED 40

How to Choose a Gobo Size

side by side comparison of different gobo sizes

Side by side differences in gobo sizes.

The gobo size that you need is based on the light fixture that will project that gobo. Many traditional theater style lights like a Source 4 ellipsoidal light or LEKO light will use a size B gobo (about the diameter of a coke can). Cheap DJ effect lights like the Chauvet Zoom or American DJ LED gobo projector use a custom gobo size that is about the size of a dime.

Why different gobo sizes?

It’s based on the the power of the light source.

More powerful light sources use bigger gobo sizes because there is more light to shoot through a larger template and the template needs more surface area to dissipate heat. Stronger light sources result in a brighter, bigger image but often comes at the expense of a larger sized light fixture.

Small cheap effect lights like the Chauvet Zoom, American DJ Gobo Projector LED are not recommended. These lights use teeny-tiny gobo templates to project with limiting detail and brightness. These lights may look good in a small dark bedroom or living room but don’t hold up to real life events of more than 30 people.

monogram wedding reception lighting mount ida farm

Example of a D-sized transparency gobo used at an event results in an extremely clear image.

Smaller gobo sizes mean there is less physical space to print detailed images. Smaller gobos are better suited for blockier, less detailed designs like the cross shape used in the smallest gobo in our example photo. More detailed designs like those used for weddings are better suited to larger gobo sizes (E-size or bigger).

When considering a gobo light this is what we recommend:

  • E-Size or bigger gobo
  • A light fixture that supports multiple lenses
  • At least a 30w (LED) light source

Common gobo sizes

Here is a table of some popular standardized gobo sizes and common light fixtures that use those gobo sizes:

Letter Size O.D. (mm) I.A. (mm) Notes
A Size 100 75
B Size 86 64.5 Standard Size for Ellipsoidal lights (Source 4, Source 4 Zoom)
M Size 66 48 Source 4 Jr.
G Size 65.5 48 For Clay Paky Goldenscans
D Size 53.3 38 Martin PR-1, LEDSpot 40
E Size 37.5 28 LEDSpot 25, LEDSpot 30
O.D = Outside Diameter; I.A. = Image Area

The OD (Outer Diameter) number is the diameter of the actual template itself. The IA (Image Area) number is the useable are that can be used to print the image used for the gobo. It’s important to know these numbers when ordering a gobo, especially the IA. The IA can change from light fixture to light fixture even for commonly used gobo sizes. Make sure you know the OD and the IA of the gobo size for your particular lighting fixture you’ll be using for your event. Also know what types of gobos your light supports.

chauvet zoom gobo 2.0 vs LED 40

Gobo sizes compared showing a Chauvet Gobo Zoom 2.0 vs. the LED 40 lights Superlative Events uses.

Bottom Line

When ordering a gobo know the OD and the IA of the light fixture you’re using. Realize that larger gobo sizes can support higher levels of detail in the resulting image. Most corporate gobos are B-size.

Questions, corrections, comments? Let us know in the comments below.

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before and after lighting in smaller hotel ballroom

How Can I Transform a Hotel Ballroom With Lighting?

First dance at a wedding reston hyatt regency with uplighting.

First dance with uplighting, tree candles, and texture lighting.

Hotel ballrooms are designed to hold business meetings, weddings, corporate holiday parties, conferences, and any other number of events. Hotel ballrooms aren’t designed to look amazing for every event, they are designed to be nice enough to not notice the room itself.

Or you might have the opposite end of the spectrum with the hotel that went headstrong into branding the room with a very specific design style that most likely does not fit your event decor (we’re looking at you kaleidoscope carpet Marriott’s). That’s where the lighting comes in.

DIY, Outside Vendor, Hotel’s Vendors?

You have three options when considering lighting for your event. The most cost effective is DIY, using outside vendors is generally next expensive, or you can use the hotel’s recommended lighting vendor.

DIY lighting can be easy to transform a ballroom if you have the time and people to do it.

Leveraged DIY is an option that people don’t always consider. Use another one of your vendors, florist, planner, DJ, drape company to setup  the lighting for you. They will already be there at your event and you can save on the labor costs that way. We’re more than happy to work with them so that you get the effect that you are looking for.

Outside vendors: are usually the next best cost effective option. Expect to pay a premium for having someone come out, set up the lighting, come up with the lighting design, and make sure everything runs smoothly. Weddingwire.com is a great resource for finding lighting vendors and we usually send people there when looking for a vendor in their area.

reston hyatt before and after wedding lighting

Hotel ballroom before and after lighting.

Hotel lighting can be a very expensive endeavor. Not only do you have to pay for the lighting company, but you pay for the lighting company to rent space at the hotel to house their equipment, you pay for the hotel management, you pay a fee for having the hotel recommend the lighting to you, and you pay service charges on all of that. Hospitality speak it’s what ever the cost is plus plus.

From our price comparisons you’ll end up paying about a 35% to 55% premium to have the hotel provide lighting or A/V services for your event.

What Lighting Do I Need? 

before and after lighting in smaller hotel ballroom

Before and after lighting in a smaller hotel ballroom.

By the time you are done planning your event you’ll be an expert in lighting. A good place to start is this article types of event lighting that walks you through each step of types of lighting and what it creates.

Think of lighting as a way to enhance the features and design elements in your space and deemphasize elements that you don’t like. Hate the carpet and chairs? Use uplighting to draw guests eyes up and use texture lighting to add interest higher up on the walls so guests won’t notice the carpet or chairs. Then use candles or centerpiece lighting on tables to add extra light to each of the tables and draw guests eyes away from the elements you don’t like.

Find out how many uplights you’ll need using our online uplighting calculators.

amber uplighting at the Army Navy Country Club in Arlington, VAWhat Can Lighting Do? 

Lighting can go a long ways to change elements of the room that can be very expensive to otherwise fix. Some elements it can fix are:

  • Big Space – Hotel ballrooms are notoriously large and cavernous devoid of feeling. Lighting helps warm the cold space up and helps make it more inviting.
  • Boring Walls / Air Walls – Airwalls and boring walls are perfect for texture lighting. Create the pattern and design that matches your other decorations on your walls with light.
  • Carpet – The entire floor is covered in it, uplights can fix them by bringing peoples eyes higher or changing the color of the carpet completely.
  • Chairs – Chiavari or similar replacement chairs can cost an extra $50-$100 per table, use uplighting at less than half the cost.
  • Dark Room – Sometimes venues are just dark. Lighting brightens up the space and makes it feel more warm and elegant.
  • Linens – Upgraded linens can cost $30-$120 per table, use uplighting to impart color and shimmer to standard white or cream colored linens.
  • Low Ceilings – Smaller ballrooms feel more like dungeons than ballrooms. Use uplighting’s vertical lines to make the room feel bigger and taller. Use a blisslight on the ceiling to make it feel more expansive and taller. Pin-spot centerpieces to make it feel more dimensional.
  • Ugly Art Filled Walls – Use light to control what people see. Cake spotlights, pin-spotlights, table spotlights can all redirect what people see and what they don’t see.
  • Terrible Lighting – Fluorescent lights are ugly. They make people look ugly, they make the venue look ugly, and otherwise are terrible light sources. Bringing in lighting will let you fix the bad lighting in a space.
  • Wall Color – Uplights can change the colors of any wall in an event space at the touch of a button.
cake spotlight with purple uplighting

W Hotel uplighting, pin-spots and cake spotlight at a wedding in Washington, DC.

Lighting can make a big huge difference in the look of your event space and is one of the most cost effective ways to transform the room. After all, no one can see your other decor elements if they are in the dark.

Transform Your Event

Whether your budget is $50, $500, or $5,000 we can help you find a cost effective way to light up your event and save money in the process. Check out all the diy lighting rentals we offer and what you can do to transform your event.

We’d love to hear what you think, leave your feedback, questions, or comments below.

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wireless uplights in purple with pin-spot lighting

Even Better Wireless Uplighting Rental Pricing! Shipped Nationwide

wireless uplights in purple with pin-spot lighting

Wireless uplights setup at the Sunset Room by Wolfgang Puck at National Harbor.

Wireless uplights for as little as $25 per light!

It’s easier and more cost effective than ever to add uplighting to your event.

Leave the cables, wires, limited color choices and frustration at home. Wireless uplighting lets you enjoy your event more and setup less.

Many cheap wired rental lights only let you choose from 7 preset colors. Our lights let you choose from over 16.7 million color combinations right at your finger tips.

Many wired uplight rentals are setup so you can only use their cables which means you have to use more lights even though you might not need them. It can look cheaper up front but is actually more expensive and takes a lot longer to setup.

This photo shows the Sunset Room at National Harbor in Maryland. 28 uplights were used in this setup. Total time for uplight setup by one person: 10 minutes

Trying to get the same setup with wired uplights would take over 45 minutes and it would be impossible to get a deep eggplant purple because of the limited colors.

It’s now easier and more cost effective than ever to go rent wireless uplights. Save money, transform your event, and spend more time enjoying the event.

Fill out the form on the right to check availability for your event today!

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floral vine texture lighting gobo example mount ida farm

Ben and Sara Monogram – Mount Ida Farm – Charlottesville, VA

monogram wedding reception lighting mount ida farm

Mount Ida Farm in Charlottesville, VA is a beautiful wedding venue and it was the perfect fit for a wedding for Ben Erwin and Sara Gwinn.

Sara is a very talented print and graphic designer so it was great working with her and getting a beautiful design to showcase at her wedding. The monogram was completely her design and captured the feeling of their personality and the personality of the venue and the urban barn feel that they created.

floral vine texture lighting gobo example mount ida farm

We used uplighting that started off amber earlier in the wedding reception and changed over to purple later in the evening. Texture lighting was used on either side of a massive 20ft barn window door that was flanked on either side by white drape. We designed the texture lighting to incorporate design elements that Sara had used in her monogram to plant her design element into the space re-iterating the beautiful farm vibe that was also present.


Lighting, Entertainment & Photobooth:
Superlative Events – Arlington, VA
Venue: Mount Ida Farm – Charlottesville, VA

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