Party décor sets the scene for your event and brings the party theme together. There is one simple piece of décor, however, that is often overlooked: Uplighting. These lights are generally placed out of sight on the floor, often behind tables, plants, or small screens, and directed towards the walls or ceiling to bathe the room in a warm, colorful glow. Consider this the “lingerie” layer of your décor. It makes everything around it look better, and sets the stage for a professional looking event. Whether you are having a party at your house or a large venue, using uplighting is a simple and effective way to create a warm ambiance around the room. Consider an amber color to create a candlelight effect, or go all out with bright colors that match your theme.
For some professional tips, we asked the uplighting experts at DIYuplighting.com a few questions.
What inspired you to start an uplighting rental business?
“I was running a DJ business in 2010 when I booked a huge event and my client wanted 60 lights for decorative room lighting. I didn’t own that many so I looked online for a place to rent them and was shocked to find nothing available. I figured if I needed to rent uplighting, other people would also.”
Can anyone set up your uplighting or do you need to be a lighting professional?
“Our lights are very easy to set up. Simply plug them in and select a color using the built-in digital display.”
How many lights do you really need?
“Some people rent just a few to highlight certain areas of a room. Other people want to light a whole room and will rent 20–30. It depends on the look you want to create but adding even a few accent lights really makes a nice impact. A good rule of thumb is to space the lights about 6–12 feet away from each other. The closer you put them, the more of an even wash of color you will get.”
What new lighting effects are trending now?
“Projection effects like monograms and patterned designs are becoming really popular. This effect is created using a “gobo projector light”. It’s slightly more involved then using uplighting, but still a manageable DIY project.” (Gobos can be rented at their sister site: prolightingrental.com)
How do your online rentals work?
“We’ve streamlined the process. Simply place your order online (there is no minimum order so you can order as many or as few as you need). Receive your lights a few days before your event. When your event is over, package them up and ship them back using the prepaid shipping label.”
(Photo provided byDIYuplighting.com)
Of course, you may choose to rent your lights locally, a few sources to consider.
1) Check with your local performing arts companies. We found a company in Santa Cruz that rents out stage lighting for a very low price. We were able to provide simple uplighting accents (8 lights) for a school fundraiser with limited funds. It did take a little more technical knowledge, and picking up, and returning the equipment was a bit of a hassle, but it’s an option if you have a small budget.
2) Check with local party rental companies. The good news is that many of them will also set up the lighting for you but this service may come with a hefty price tag and a minimum order. DJ’s are sometimes a good source for uplighting as well.
3) If you plan on using uplighting a few times a year, and have room to store the equipment, you may want to purchase a simple lighting package. Amazon.com has a few options that can get you started. With 8 lights, you can place one in each corner of a room and use the rest for highlighting plants or other party décor for a cozy and elegant look.
So don’t forget the “lingerie” at your next event. Please share your experiences (and photos!) using uplighting and send us any tips or tricks you have for making it even better.
Note: The thoughts in this article are our own and we were not paid to promote DIYuplighting.com in any form.