Light The Lights, Take The Stage. Make The Event.

It is no big secret that I grew up in the theater and have a huge love for it that is often times indescribable. So many things inspire me on the stage. Most of all the way an audience member can be moved to tears with just the perfect lighting design. I find myself challenged to create dramatic and exciting looks for every single event that I produce.

Last week we were retained to design the after parties for Charleston Fashion Week. I used this as an amazing opportunity to bring the NYC vibe down south and create some fabulous looks. My challenge was that because it was the first year that Grey Goose and Gentlemen Jack  wanted this, the budget was not as large as I would normally be used to.  (To be honest, I sometimes enjoy that even more because it is a bigger challenge to create beautiful looks.)

Here are some of the looks that I created at various venues throughout the week leading up to the big finale event. Each room was to create an entire different vibe from the next. Take a moment and enjoy some of these unique and creative looks and remember that when it comes to making the party perfect, lighting is 100% what you need!


This first venue was located at the swanky Cocktail Club. When I started the space had nothing at all except for standard flood lighting in these columns and a few candles on tables. I created this multi color look by placing one of our uprights at the base, changing the bulb to a cool blue and placing an LED bowl at the top of the column to finish the look.

i complimented the look with fuscia up lighting around the perimeter of the patio.


Downstairs on the Macintosh’s back patio, the given exposed woods and yellow brick walls called for a Red Hot look. I made that happen by lighting the DJ and all yellow walls in hot reds. I took perimeter garden areas with cooler purples and then this back bar installation I produced a warm amber with an LED light up bar. As you can tell it made for the perfect silhouette.


We take you to FISH Restaurant for the next night’s party. The party took place  in 3 separate rooms. The main bar, the adjacent seating area leading to the outdoor terrace. I thought it would be cool given the name of the restaurant to continue a play on European sea towns and do some cool colors. WE started with teals leading into crisp baby blues into this installation on the patio. As you can tell, I always left a little touch from the night before’s event to keep cohesion.


Trio was the first club we  worked on all week. I wanted a bolder installation piece here. We went with a marriage of both red and fuscia on the red walls and then I added multi level vessels that were filled with water colored LED lights and candles to give the perfect NYC club vibe. The goal of this evening’s event was a total transportation out of Charleston and into a chic club in Chelsea.


The last evening posed one of my biggest challenges. The event took place at the SC Aquarium. That in itself is a lovely venue to work in. Lighting it is somewhat of a challenge when it comes to timing. However, that was the least of my worries that evening. I had a headlining DJ in from Chicago in the Great Ocean Tank room. This is a floor to ceiling lit tank that is so dramatic nothing can ever compete. However, I had to make a splash (no pun intended) immediately across from it where the DJ was to be placed. I already a projection element in place. Lighting the DJ with 2 LED units and then we opted to utilize 60 glass vessels varying in height to create a decadent look in front of him. This is how it came out.


I was very pleased as were all guests with the looks of each venue. I look forward to next year when we can plan and budget for these to really take them to the next level.



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