Lighting Design Ideas for a Bright and Beautiful Wedding

From the ceremony to the dessert bar, lighting is an important part of setting the stage for your wedding. One of the world's foremost lighting designers shows how lighting can change any event from special to unforgettable.
By: Jeanine Hays

Related To:

  1. Lighting
  2. Weddings

©Bentley Meeker

©Bentley Meeker

©Bentley Meeker

©Bentley Meeker

©Bentley Meeker

©Bentley Meeker

©Bentley Meeker

©Bentley Meeker

©Bentley Meeker

©Bentley Meeker

Floating Branches

Whether you are getting married outside or bringing the outdoors in, lighting is the key to creating the perfect environment. This indoor ceremony space is awash in pink and peach light so that, even indoors, guests can feel like they are enjoying the last rays of a warm sunset.

Magical Forest

In this reception hall, beautiful branches entwined with bright floral arrangements are highlighted by a mix of subtle candlelight, as well as peach and lavender lighting. Candles can be wonderful accents to an overall lighting scheme, adding a gentle touch of elegance. The elements combine to create a forest atmosphere that is nothing short of magical.

Let Lighting Take You Away

When a destination wedding isn’t the right answer, lighting can be the perfect way to transport you and your guests to a faraway place. For a wedding with a cultural theme, use lighting to take your guests on an international journey. Fill rooms with deep reds to transport guests to India or China, or bring in jewel tones to create the mystery and enchantment of North African destinations like Morocco.

Set the Mood

Use lighting in a way that will enhance your cultural color scheme. Candles in the wedding’s color palette and a low mix of tea lights and pillar candles can all be used to highlight decorative pieces on the reception tables that are central pieces to your cultural concept.


For a wedding with a more casual feel, light a room in red or blue — or your favorite shade — for a striking impact. This low-key lounge, filled with red cushions and stools, is given a new level of sophistication with lighting in the same shade.

Cool Colors

To make your lounge area the place to be after the wedding, look at bringing in light that adds pattern to the room. Circular patterns like these add texture to the room, establish a cool party atmosphere and are a complement to the accessories in the space.

Red and Green

A Christmas wedding reception is a beautiful event that can be made that much more enchanting through the clever use of lighting. While the chairs and linens may not be in Christmas colors, the room is bathed in beautiful poinsettia red, while green garlands are emphasized with spotlights.

Winter White

Using a variety of lighting techniques can transform your holiday reception into a winter wonderland. In this case, serpentine chandeliers are hung, enhancing the ice castle mystique of the space. At the same time, patterned lighting transforms a plain wooden floor into something much more enticing, while light fixtures around the room on tables and banisters add an exquisite glow.


A small and classic wedding can feel more intimate and cozy with the right lighting. Textured maroon walls with a custom monogram for the bride and groom and spot-lit arrangements make this space a warm and inviting sojourn to a different time.

Add Drama

Romantic candlelight and crystal chandeliers add a dramatic glow to this sweet reception. When deciding on the lighting for a retro affair, think of ways to give your space a little bit of drama. Hurricane candle holders, tall tapers and vivid overhead lights are all a part of creating this stunning atmosphere.