top of page

PLANNING YOUR WEDDING - Reception Lighting (Part 1)


Cylinder Vases with submerged orchids and floating candles / Image courtesy of Aaron Joseph

I’m tired of seeing wedding reception venues with up-lighting which mimics that of the 'big top'. I find the rich red, bright blue, green and purple hues just way too much.

blue Uplighting /

By this particular point in the blog I’ve probably lost some of my readers who are in total disagreement with what they’ve just read.

It’s just an opinion. At the end of the day it’s your wedding and your choice, and that’s all that ever really matters.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with up-lighting, I just do not believe it is fitting for every wedding occasion.

Now if you’re planning on having a disco theme for your wedding event, then the bright lights previously mentioned will be fitting for the occasion.On the other hand if your theme is quite the opposite then you definitely need to take your lighting into consideration when you plan your special day.

Look at the beautiful lighting hanging from the ceiling in the image above. If only this method of lighting was used, it would create a totally different ambience. I would much rather use this as my main lighting for the evening and enhance or echo that same idea with some complimentary illumination on the reception tables.

Tea light holders / Image from The Libra Company

The blue /purple up-lighting on the other hand would be ideal to use in the area where the dancing is going to be taking place.

I've had people tell me that, "Guests don’t take any notice of things like that on the day." Though I know this can’t be true because I myself on numerous occasions have chatted with fellow diners across the wedding breakfast table about how lovely the centre-pieces, the décor, and the favours etc., all look.

Let’s be honest, if you’ve ever been to what you considered was a bad wedding, you most likely remember the surroundings as well as the food.


I love warm and more natural lighting, that is closer to the colour of candle lights. Something that is not over powering. Something that illuminates the reception room without affecting those wedding colours you pondered over for such a long time before coming to a definite decision

Glass Jar containing Micro Lights / Image courtesy of Nong Vang - Unsplash

With this kind of lighting you will still be able to see the faces of your guests and continue to enjoy, and appreciate any decorations that you have probably paid a pretty penny for.

Warm lighting is especially important at this time of the year purely because the nights are starting to draw in.

Natural daylight beyond 10 pm is now over in this part of the world, at this time of the year. Therefore it is imperative that you have something to replace it once the sun goes down.


Take a look at the list of lighting ideas below

PC Creations Centrepiece surrounded by Stemmed Votive Holders

9 Types Of Lighting To Choose From For Your Wedding Tables


Floating Candles - Similar to tea lights, though not housed in the metal container. Usually round, with the ability to float in water. Come in various sizes.


Tea Lights - Often placed in votive holders, of which there are myriad to chose from.


Pillar Candles - Often placed on mirror plates or inside hurricane vases. Sometimes embedded in coloured sand or pebbles to hold them steady. Available in many colours.


Votive Candles - A candle with a similar circumference to a tealight only deeper, usually about 7 to 8 cms. available in many colours


Submersible Lights - These lights are versatile as they can be submerged in water. They come in many colours. Some are one use only, and others can be used over and over. Not the cheapest of lighting, but a great investment if you know you'll be using them more than once.

Submersible Lights by Lights4fun

PC Creations Leeds Centrepiece / Fresh Lily in Fishbowl illuminated with submersible light


String Lights - also referred to as fairy lights. There are some that you need to plug into the mains, and others that are battery operated. They come in many colours.


Micro lights - A tinier version of the string lights above, usually battery operated. They come in many different colours.


Illuminated floral displays - Floral displays which have the lighting incorporated. Usually battery operated.


LED Vase Light Bases - these are often circular and disc like in shape. The display you wish to illuminate will be placed on top of this.

PLEASE NOTE: I am an advocate of the use of real candles at events, but please bare in mind that some venues will not allow the use of a naked flame. This shouln't cause you too much inconvenience since it should be quite easy to buy an LED alternative in most cases.

A WORD OF WARNING: I would suggest you steer away from scented candles since the aroma of some could become quite overbearing for a select few of your guests.

I hope the '9 types of lighting' mentioned above will help you to make a decision.

Look out for Reception Lighting (Part 2) which is scheduled to follow in the next few days.

It will be looking closer at the container types you can use to house the lighting mentioned in this blog.

PC Creations Leeds welcomes your feedback. why not let us know what kind of lighting you used at your special occasion.

We wish you every success for the future.

59 views0 comments
bottom of page