Tag Archives: Fantasy Sound Event Services Event Lighting

wedding guest list

A Guide to Creating Your Wedding Guest List

Once engaged, the excitement starts to build and most couples eagerly anticipate the day they get to say “I do” in front of their friends and family. But curating the guest list can be challenging — deciding who should and shouldn’t be invited can be an emotionally draining experience.

If this resonates with you, don’t worry! With careful planning and the right approach, you’ll be able to create a wedding guest list that includes all of your favorite people in the world. 

Here are some valuable tips that will make the process a whole lot easier for you!

1. Estimate your headcount.

Some couples make the mistake of looking at possible wedding venues without having a rough idea of how many guests they plan to invite. Often, they end up having to cut some names from the list in order to fit the number of guests into their chosen venue. Doing so may lead to some of your would-be guests harboring resentment.

Save yourself from unnecessary stress by deciding whether you want an intimate celebration or a grand affair before shopping for venues. This way, you don’t have to risk limiting the number of guests who’ll be attending your wedding.

2. Be mindful of your budget.

While you might want to invite and accommodate as many people as possible, the reality is this: the more people you invite, the more expensive your wedding will be. 

At the end of the day, wedding expenses can be broken down into costs per person. You are paying for every guest who will be at your wedding, so make sure they are worth it! Be sure to invite only those whose presence will make your wedding magical and memorable. If you can’t picture the day without them, they belong on the list!

3. Curate the list with your partner.

Remember: Weddings involve two people! That means both you and your partner need to be invested in your guest list and curate it together. There might be other people, such as close family members, who will try to influence who goes on that list, but ultimately, it’s up to the two of you to decide who makes the cut.

Don’t be afraid to respectfully put your foot down, if necessary. After all, it’s your wedding and you don’t need to invite your mother-in-law’s childhood best friend’s sister if you don’t want to.

4. Establish rules regarding plus-ones and children.

Allowing guests to bring plus-ones and children to your wedding will increase your expenses, but may also increase the fun. Weigh the pros and cons of hosting kids, and determine whether you want an adults-only event or if you’re okay with having little ones there. You can indicate this in your wedding invitations. It’s also a good idea to inform your guests of the number of seats you have reserved for their party or group. 

Granting plus-ones to your guests is also up to you. When deciding whether or not to allow a guest to have a plus-one, consider the following: Have you met your guest’s date? How long has your guest known their plus-one? What is the nature of their relationship? Yes, this last one might seem a bit nosy, but it’s your wedding and you have the right to know who will attend. After all, you don’t want any unnecessary drama to unfold on your big day.

5. Remain organized.

A spreadsheet is an invaluable tool for keeping track of your guests. You’ll want to keep everyone’s names, phone numbers, addresses, and other crucial information in one accessible place.

In your spreadsheet, consider color-coding your guests or adding columns to determine whether they have already RSVPed. You can also have a section to indicate the guests’ preferred meal, which you can easily relay to the caterer. It also helps to add a column to note any gifts that you receive, making it simple to send thank-you notes after the wedding.

Don’t forget to share this document with your planner and caterer to ensure that the wedding planning process is streamlined for everyone involved.

While your wedding guest list will evolve over time, it’s best to get a headstart on it in the early stages of the planning process. Set aside an evening with your partner, order some takeout, crack open a bottle of wine, and get to planning!

vendor cancellations - weddingwire

New Press: WeddingWire – Vendor Cancellations

Last-minute wedding vendor cancellations sound like a nightmare, right? It certainly isn’t the ideal situation. Rest assured that the rest of your event team knows what to do — especially your wedding planner.

Kevin chimed in on this topic for a roundup on WeddingWire alongside a number of other wedding experts.

vendor cancellation - weddingwire

Kevin’s take on vendor cancellations:

“Your planner will help you find a replacement in the blink of an eye. This is what they have been hired to do and will handle it quickly and professionally. They may even consider the vendor team you already have, and one of them might be the solution to the problem.”

See the full article on WeddingWire to learn what to do about a last-minute vendor cancellation!

5 Wedding Themes for Your Big Day

As an engaged couple, one of the most crucial decisions you’ll have to make while planning your big day is your theme. There are a number of creative wedding themes to choose one, so it’s about finding one that fits you and your partner’s tastes! It should incorporate elements that truly reflect who you are as a couple and as individuals, while at the same time pleasing your guests and leaving them awed.

Try to decide on one as early as possible as it sets the tone for the entire event! It determines your wedding colors, the style of the wedding attire, the food you’ll serve, and so on. 

If you’re struggling to figure out how your special day should look, we’ve rounded up some of the top wedding themes you can use and get those creative juices flowing. Ready to be inspired? Read on!  

rustic wedding themes

Rustic wedding theme

If you and your partner are fans of nature and the great outdoors, you might want to celebrate the most important day of your lives with a rustic wedding theme! Think natural wood, earthy blooms, burlap, wine barrels, naked cakes, and floral hoops. You can go for an organic, down-to-earth style, or evoke a more ethereal, fairytale vibe.  

Travel wedding theme

Do you love traveling? How about sharing your passion with your wedding guests? You can start with passport-inspired wedding invitations and add more travel touches to your stylings. Think vintage-style postcards as table numbers, globes as centerpieces, paper planes as escort cards—the possibilities are endless! For a more personal touch, you can also bring in decorations that remind you of an important trip you took together or a destination that holds memories for you as a couple.

traditional wedding themes

Traditional wedding theme

Couples who want a timeless aesthetic usually go for a traditional wedding theme. These are perfect if you want a clean and elegant aesthetic. Classic styling such as white blooms, light-colored linens, posh seating, and subtle décor are typically prominent in the wedding venue. Banquet halls, hotel ballrooms, golf and country clubs, and private estates work well for this tried and tested wedding theme.  

Vintage wedding theme

Vintage weddings are always a fun, nostalgic way to celebrate the beginning of a couple’s new life together! This theme takes inspiration from yesteryear by incorporating antique-looking decor into the wedding venue, such as old suitcases, antique cameras, and book stacks. For entertainment, they usually pick out songs from their favorite era for the DJ or band to play. Couples can also cap off the celebration by driving away in a cute vintage car, like an old Volkswagen or Porsche.

bohemian wedding themes

Bohemian wedding theme

Boho weddings appeal to laid-back couples and may be confused for rustic weddings. However, a boho wedding incorporates more whimsical and eclectic elements into the event, such as mismatched chairs, punchy floral arrangements, macrame accents, oriental rugs, dream catchers, and the like.

While bohemian-themed weddings are typically held in outdoor venues such as gardens and beaches, casual venues such as barns and industrial spaces can be transformed to achieve this quirky yet lovely style. Just take a look at the fun design at Palm Event Center above!

 

Remember that wedding themes should speak to both you and your partner’s interests and personalities. All of your wedding details should complement each other—just like the two of you. Happy brainstorming!

catering foodservice & events press

New Press: Catering Foodservice & Events

The holiday season is upon us, which means it’s time to start planning those holiday celebrations! Kevin’s latest feature in Catering Foodservice & Events Magazine is getting us in the spirit for decorating.

catering foodservice & events press

catering foodservice & events magazine

In it, he encourages the mixing and matching of decor to keep things interesting and add layers to a design:

“It’s a common misconception that everything has to match seamlessly,” says Kevin Dennis, owner of Fantasy Sound Event Services and a certified event planner. “In fact, serving cocktails in vintage glassware or mixing metallics with charging plates is perfect for adding dimension!”

To read the latest issue, subscribe to Catering Foodservice & Events Magazine for free!

goodshuffle pro

New Press: Goodshuffle Pro

New week, new press! This time, Kevin chimed in on Goodshuffle Pro in a roundup about employee retention in the special events industry. As any business owner knows, our teams are our most valuable assets!

goodshuffle pro

Here’s a glimpse at what Kevin had to share:

“If there’s anything I learned during the height of 2020, it’s that I couldn’t have pushed through without my team. […] Employees are much more likely to stick with you when you give them the respect and consideration they deserve.”

Read the full feature on Goodshuffle Pro here!

livermore wedding

Anie + Jason | Casa Real Wedding

The Fantasy Sound team has been busy at work with this year’s wedding boom and we’re so delighted to be back doing what we love most: giving couples the weddings of their dreams! So it was lovely working on Anie and Jason’s Casa Real wedding  — it was a sweet reminder of the beauty of love, romance, and togetherness. Scroll down for a peek at their big day!

casa real wedding

Alongside bountiful blooms, champagne uplighting and creamy drapery softened the ceremony space at Casa Real for the perfect setting to say “I do.” In addition, we love how the elaborate ceremony arch played double duty at the sweetheart table during the reception!

livermore wedding lighting

casa real wedding ceremonylivermore wedding designlivermore wedding photography

livermore casa real wedding

Gorgeous florals from Wish Social Events, our much-loved crystal chandelier, and a couple who loves a good time certainly made this Casa Real wedding a celebration for the books!

livermore wedding design

casa real wedding reception

casa real wedding

california wedding lighting

livermore wedding

We hope you enjoyed our trip down memory lane with the happy couple!

Congratulations to Anie and Jason! Cheers to happily ever after!


Above all, thank you to all of our creative partners for bringing this beautiful Casa Real wedding to life!

Venue: Casa Real Events
Coordinator: Alyssa Hickerson, Beets Hospitality Group
Photography: De Joy Photography
Florist: Wish Social Events
Rentals: Pleasanton Rentals
Video: Lens of Lenox Videography
DJ: DJ Diko
Lighting/drapery: Fantasy Sound Event Services
Paper goods/Signage: Sweet and Crafty
Art/apparel/decor: Hye End Designs
Hair: Liezel Styles
Makeup: Antonia Cruz
Baker: Le Gâteau Elegant
Bridal Gown: BoLee Bridal Couture

Event Services Showcase

RSVP: Upcoming Event Services Showcase!

We had a blast at our first Event Services Showcase back in September! Now, we can’t wait to welcome a new set of couples to our next one in November.

Mark your calendar, as the next Event Services Showcase is set for Wednesday, November 17th. So make sure to RSVP as soon as possible to save your spot and start thinking about what you want to know!

Event Services Showcase

When you visit, you’ll get to meet the Fantasy Sound team, learn about our services, and ask all the questions that have been arising as you plan your big day.

You’ll also get to test out our Photo Booth and see our renowned chandelier selection and other lighting elements up close and in person.

RSVP for one of three time slots:

  • 6:30 p.m.
  • 7:30 p.m.
  • 8:30 p.m.

Save my spot at the Event Services Showcase!

NOTE: Our Showcase is a meet-and-greet, which means there will be other couples in attendance. If you are looking to connect one-on-one, we are happy to accommodate that as well!

Schedule a personal consultation from Tuesday-Friday between 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. or on Saturdays between 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. We also have appointments available on Wednesday and Thursday evenings. Get in touch with us to schedule your consultation.

Photo of the Week: Luxury Wedding Vibes

This week, we’re bringing you a luxury wedding fit for royalty! Leon and Mari were certainly serving king and queen vibes with their all-white design.

Between beautiful white florals, a raised ceremony platform, and our sparkling crystal beaded chandelier, we loved seeing Casa Real transformed for their sweet celebration!

fall wedding

Fall Wedding Trends to Know in 2021

With autumn in the air, it’s time to shift our summer mindsets to appreciate the beauty of a picture-perfect fall wedding.

fall wedding

Cooler temps, falling leaves, and a whole new vibe to work with make it easy to host a fall wedding to remember! Here are the key trends to know as we head into the harvest season.

 

Rich color palettes

Burgundy, gold, orange, brown, purple — many couples find inspiration for their fall wedding in nature and we are here for it! Paired with lush greenery, wood textures, and other natural elements, using a fall-themed color palette makes for a lovely design. Consider using some soft uplighting or dynamic gobo washes to add an extra special touch that levels up the vibe.

 

Cozy bonfires

With the pandemic lingering, outdoor weddings remain the go-to choice for engaged couples in 2021. And what’s a fall wedding without a roaring bonfire to gather ’round? Perfect for roasting marshmallows, sipping hot cocoa, and cozying up with loved ones! Consider adding some soft textures to the seating arrangement. Think chunky knit blankets or cashmere scarves for guests — a sweet way to show your guests a great time.

 

Weekday weddings

Thanks to a year’s worth of postponed events, the industry is experiencing a wedding boom keeping calendars packed for months. For those wanting to tie the knot in the near future, weekday weddings have become an excellent way to fit their nuptials into a busy schedule! It’s not just convenient, though. Weekday weddings are also a cost-effective alternative to the average weekend wedding. Plus, it’s the perfect excuse to extend your celebration into the weekend with group activities for guests who want to stick around!

 

Micro-nuptials

Less is more; at least, that’s how it’s trending in the wedding industry! Couples are trimming down their guest lists and, with it, realizing the possibilities that open up with a smaller wedding. Since your budget goes further with fewer guests, you can invest more into the elements that matter most. Unique venues, upgraded food + beverage choices, elevated design + décor, and more face time with guests — there are many benefits to micro-weddings!

starburst chandelier

Photo of the Week: Glittering Starburst Chandelier

Be still our hearts — our starburst chandelier really showed out for this sweet Indian wedding at Casa Real!

A custom monogrammed dance floor. Floor-to-ceiling taffeta drapery behind a mandap bursting with blooms. A glittering starburst chandelier to catch everyone’s eye. Lush centerpieces bursting with bold colors. These are the ingredients for a wedding dream come true!

Event Services Showcase

REMINDER: Event Services Showcase is BACK!

Have you signed up for our Event Services Showcase yet? It’s just around the corner, so you have just over a week to register and join us for our first showcase back in action! Come out to meet the Fantasy Sound team and learn more about the products and services we provide to bring your event to life.

Event Services Showcase

Next Wednesday, we’re hosting three sessions:

  • 6:30 p.m.
  • 7:30 p.m.
  • 8:30 p.m.

Check out our renowned lighting fixtures in their full glory, pop into our photo booth and say cheese, and get to know the folks who will turn your dream into a reality.

I’m in! Sign me up!

Looking to connect one-on-one? Let’s do it!
You can schedule a personal consultation from Tuesday through Friday between 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. and on Saturdays between 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. We also have appointments available on Wednesday and Thursday evenings. Get in touch with us to schedule your consultation.

Photo of the Week: Flawless First Dance

The first dance is a monumental moment of a wedding day, and it’s only right to have the perfect dance floor to fit it!

first dance

This beautiful couple transformed Casa Real with an elevated dance floor, crystal chandeliers, and a sweetheart lounge that is just bursting with blooms. How’s that for a perfect setting to dance away into your happily ever after?

How to Budget for Wedding Lighting + Entertainment

Marriage is an important milestone in a couple’s lives and is often seen as the beginning of happily ever after. A wedding is a once-in-a-lifetime event, so it’s no surprise that many couples want to celebrate it in the best way possible. This involves months, or even years, of planning every detail so that their vision comes to life and everything is perfect on the big day. One of the trickiest yet most crucial parts of wedding planning is the budget.

A wedding doesn’t have to be expensive to be beautiful or meaningful. The couple will likely appreciate their wedding more if they didn’t have to go into debt for it!

Good lighting, however, is one thing couples should not scrimp on. Not only does it allow the guests to appreciate the elements in the room, but it also sets the perfect mood and ambiance. The cost involved can range from $200 to $5,000, depending on the chosen venue and the couple’s requirements. For example, outdoor weddings often need more lighting, for practicality as well as aesthetics.

And of course, while guests may forget the exact flowers in the bride’s bouquet, the flavor of the wedding cake, or the calligraphy on the invitation, they’ll never forget the experience! The ceremony, the dancing, and the music are what your guests will remember forever. Entertainment is one thing you shouldn’t overlook when planning your event.

wedding budget

For those who need help budgeting for their wedding, here are some valuable tips:  

Organize your wedding budget.

Whether you are planning a simple wedding or a grand affair, an organized wedding budget spreadsheet is a must! This simple tool allows you to keep track of how funds were designated along the way and how much money is left. It will keep all the important numbers in one place and help you make more realistic decisions.

Work together to budget for your must-haves.

Whether it’s the budget or event details, it is vital for couples to be on the same page about their wedding. This involves discussing and understanding each other’s preferences. The final decision should take into account both their joint and individual needs to ensure the wedding budget is allocated to keep both partners happy.

Do your research from the start.

Do you want to book a DJ or a ten-piece band? Have you decided whether a custom monogram wash or a gorgeous chandelier is needed? What you agree on determines how much you spend, so do your research beforehand. Then, when you start interviewing vendors and getting more involved in the process, you’ll know exactly what you need!

Connect with lighting & entertainment companies.

Getting estimates from the companies you’re interested in will help create a realistic budget for the wedding and reception. Plus, it will help you compare packages to ensure you’re getting what you want at the best rate. Just be sure to check in on companies’ online reviews to ensure they’ve kept other clients happy!

There you have it! Having a detailed budget plan from the start can save you an incredible amount of time, energy, and resources. If you need more help with your wedding lighting and entertainment, let’s chat!

Photo of the Week: Romantic Wedding Vibes

Happy Friday – this week, we’re wrapping it up with some gorgeous, romantic wedding vibes!

Jenny and Chris’ wedding was truly one for the books. Between the rich florals adorning our rustic beam Edison chandelier and the geometric drop chandeliers peeking out, who wouldn’t want to dance the night away?

Technical vs. Decorative Lighting: What do I need for my event?

When it comes to lighting up your wedding, you need to know all the options that are available to you. What colors fit your palette? What needs to be staged in a special way? Will technical lighting do? Or does decorative lighting need to be included to fit the bill?

The short answer is: You need both! However, knowing the difference between the two will help you understand where they fit into your design plans, ensuring you procure all of the lighting equipment you need for your wedding.

Let’s tackle each of them:

Technical Lighting

Simply put, technical lighting is used for functional, practical purposes. Composed of LED lights, technical lights use less energy and are ideal for spaces with limited power.

Though technical lighting sounds drab, there is a wow factor to them for you to consider! Are you thinking of having a spotlight at your sweetheart table? Or, would you like a gobo wash as an accent wall? Love the idea of your monogrammed initials on the dance floor? All of this gets realized with technical lights. Yep, spotlights and gobos are only possible with the right LED fixtures in place!

So, whether you want pin lighting to highlight your stunning tiered cake or a full-on stage behind the band, technical lighting is a must for getting your details in order.

decorative lighting

Decorative Lighting

Holding true to its name, decorative lighting is used to amp up the aesthetics of your venue. Unlike technical lighting, decorative lighting is not meant to actually light up your venue but more so to enhance designs and create the atmosphere.

Decorative lights bring the warmth of yellow hues that technical lights don’t provide, setting the mood for a lovely, intimate moment on your big day. It is very versatile and caters to every look, adding that extra oomph!

For example, simply adding colored uplighting to your venue will elevate your wedding design! The color options are endless, but be careful not to overdo it. Less is, indeed, more! Check out our blog, Colored Lighting: How to do it Right, for more colored lighting inspo.

Have you always dreamt of the starry night look? If so, string lights are for you! Or how about market lights that turn any venue into a place where the vibe is just right, and nobody wants to leave? Yes, please! Are you thinking of bringing on the drama? Go for marquee lights!

Wherever you want to add an extra little pizzazz, decorative lights are here to save the day.

Understandably, knowing the difference between lighting elements and what they do is complex. Nobody is asking you to become an expert, but a little bit of knowledge will go a long way when planning your dream wedding. Of course, a lighting professional will know exactly what you need and where — so don’t feel like you have to do this alone!

Photo of the Day: Celestial Beauty

We have stars in our eyes for this stunning celestial-themed wedding! Love you to the moon and back? Sure, but it should be more like “love you to the galaxies and beyond.”

This gorg design features our geometric drop chandeliers, geometric diamond chandeliers, white wall palette, a sweet gobo wash, and beautiful earth tone florals. Above all, the minimal vibe pairs beautifully with the celestial-themed seating chart hanging amidst all the blooms. *swoon*

Selecting a Wedding Date: Pros + Cons of Each Season

Welcome to your wedding planning journey! The first box you need to check off is to choose your ideal wedding date. With that, you’ll be free to book your venue, photographer, and other important vendors and create a plan to ensure everything falls in the right place at the right time. Plus, the season of your wedding will influence your theme and color palette! Not to mention, this important date will stick with you for the rest of your life (hello, anniversary!).

Needless to say, your wedding date determines everything from the food you serve to the type of lighting design you use. Yet, every season offers its own set of pros and cons, so it’s important to put some thought behind your choice. 

With all the beauty and uniqueness each season offers, let’s weigh out your options.  

SPRING: March, April, and May

Robin Williams once said, “Spring is nature’s way of saying let’s party!” — we couldn’t agree more! Flowers are blossoming, birds are singing, and it feels like everything is waking up from hibernation.

Spring is a wonderful season to get married and, naturally, one that is highly coveted. After all, nothing beats the natural beauty spring offers! From fragrant cherry blossoms to delicate peonies, the soft colors of spring will make your wedding feel like the enchanted love story fairytales are made of. Picture being surrounded by pastel colors mixed with earth tones and all the florals you can imagine. #LOVE!

Logistics-wise, spring is a great time to celebrate your wedding as most people are in town. The holidays are in the rearview mirror, but summer is still to come — your wedding day will be a day your guests eagerly await! Since many people aren’t traveling, expect those RSVPs to come in left and right.

Keep in mind, though: Spring can be unpredictable when it comes to weather. In some parts of the country, it’s not unlikely to see snow in April or a sunny 80-degree day in March. Plus, you know what they say about April showers! And, of course, spring is allergy season which can present challenges for some if planning at an outdoor venue. 

SUMMER: June, July, August

Ah, summer. Longer days mean more time to party! Whether you choose to have your wedding at the beach or an outdoor garden space, there is no need to rush. The sun will hold it down for you late into the day!

The food menu tends to be more fun in the summer, too! Get creative with cheeses, fruits, hors d’oeuvres, and drinks. Imagine roasting some ‘mallows at a bonfire as the perfect nightcap to your big day with your loved ones!

Into vibrant colors like coral or fuchsia? Go crazy with it! Summer weddings can accommodate any vision, and rest assured, you’ll have the flowers that you are looking for as well. That summer Pinterest wedding board can become your reality!

Now, keep in mind that most event pros book up quickly for the summer, so you will need to get the ball rolling early to ensure you have ample time to get your first choice vendors. (Also, don’t expect any wiggle room in pricing!) Summer is also the busiest season for travel — so don’t expect a 100% RSVP rate as your friends and family may already have vacations planned. Again, starting your planning journey early will help to give people enough time to plan in advance.

And let’s not forget about the heat! Consider the time of the day everything is taking place, especially if your wedding will be outdoors. The heat can be distracting and even dangerous, so be mindful of your guests’ comfort as well as your own!

FALL: September, October, November

Fall is a great time to say “I do” with a beautiful natural backdrop and favorable weather. If you are dreaming of the perfect rustic wedding, or love moody hues of deep purples, reds, and bronze, fall is for you. Want weather dependability? You guessed it; fall is perfect! 

One big autumn perk is that vendors tend to be more available! Plus, as the industry heads into the off-season in most areas, rates may start to lower. Sticking to your budget is vital, and a fall wedding could potentially add a bit more spare change to your pocket. Maybe you can book a videographer after all!

Like all good things, fall presents a few challenges of its own. For one, it’s possible that your guests are tight on funds after a summer of vacations and the holiday season just around the corner. It’s possible your headcount isn’t as long as you hope.

Plus, consider that you will lose extra daylight as it gets later in the season. Though an evening fall can be cozy, you might have to adjust your photo schedule and accept that certain pictures may not be feasible. But, hey, you get pictures with all of that gorgeous foliage, so that’s a win in our book!

WINTER: December, January, February

Dreaming of a white Christmas doesn’t come close to the magical feeling of a beautiful winter wonderland wedding. The rich dark reds, blues, and silvers will make your wedding gleam with elegance!

Not to mention, a Winter wedding with fresh snow makes for lovely pictures. No snow? No problem! A photo by the fireplace wrapped in a blanket with your beloved captures the intimacy and eloquence of your big day. A winter wedding is all about getting creative and leaning into the seasonal beauty!

Another winter wedding perk? The dessert bar! Bring on the mulled cider and hot cocoa bar; lay out all the comfort snacks and drinks. Turn the cozy comfort level up to the max!

Keep in mind, though, winter weddings don’t come without the risk of a weather postponement. A sprinkle of snow is usually welcomed, but nobody wants to see feet of snow on their wedding day! 

Another challenge to consider: You might have to compete with the holidays. Your guests might be using their time off to visit relatives, or their budget might be tight. Plan accordingly and give your guests grace if they choose to decline your big day.

The big takeaway here is that, no matter the season you choose, you can have the perfect wedding day of your dreams! Each season offers a unique vibe, but they also come with their own challenges. Be sure to weigh them out before making your final decision. Once you choose, lean into your season and have fun with all the possibilities! 

Colored Lighting: How to Do it Right

Colored lighting is one of the best ways to elevate your wedding. It can set the mood for your ceremony, and help transition your teary-eyed guests to the reception for a time of intimacy and fun! 

Whether you choose gobos, uplights, spotlights, or other elements, colored lighting will complement the decor, making it feel more luxurious and well planned around your venue. But, when it comes to colored lighting, there is such a thing as too much. Less is more!

Why choose colored lighting for your wedding?

Choosing a lighting design that meshes with your color palette adds dimension to your event and ties everything together with a neat bow. It has a way of highlighting your wedding space and amping up the dramatic effect — perfect for wowing your guests! #JawDrop

When picking your go-to shades, there are a few ways to play around with them. Say your color palette is pink and white. You can have fun with those colors in your lighting design as-is, or you can select hues that complement them — like champagne, gold, or even a bold shade of raspberry.

Before making your final choice, be sure to consider your venue’s existing lighting during the time of day for your event. Speak to your lighting and A/V team to confirm that your desired look will be possible given the setting. For example, it might be hard to achieve a deep, intimate feel in a space with floor-to-ceiling windows for a midday brunch! 

Evening events can typically accommodate all of your lighting expectations, with colored effects creating a natural ambiance that is perfect for soft and moody photos. 

What to avoid with colored lighting

We’re big fans of color. Everybody appreciates the splendor of a big and bold rainbow. But when it comes to your wedding, there is such a thing as too much!

Avoid going overboard with colors — both in the numbers of shades you choose and in the number of areas you use them. Overdoing it with color or mismatching your shades can spoil your perfect design. 

Don’t be afraid to experiment with color, but that’s not an excuse to go rogue! Form your vision and take it to your lighting professional — they will be ready to help you bring it to life without going too far.

How to get your lighting design right

So, how do you get your lighting just right? Keep it simple! Using soft, matchable colors like champagne, blush, and amber, ensures that you can mesh them beautifully with any color palette. On the other hand, try to avoid the louder colors of the rainbow, like orange or red, which can make the space feel too busy. 

And, of course, hiring a professional lighting company is the best way to ensure your vision comes to life with the taste and elegance you deserve! There’s no need to compromise your dream, so let the experts take over and accent the right areas with the right hues to make a statement.

At the end of the day, colored lighting is all about enhancing the venue’s aesthetic and tying it into your wedding theme. If you are going to look perfect on your big day, shouldn’t your venue do the same? Go ahead and add the color — but be mindful of how it fits in with your design. Like everything else in life, balance is key!

Photo of the Day: Sophisticated Minimalist

This beautiful minimalist design is proof that less can definitely be more! While we always appreciate a grand design bursting with blooms and other bold design elements, there is something special about a minimal design. It allows love to take center stage and create an intimate atmosphere for all to enjoy.

minimalist

We are big fans of Casa Real to begin with, so we know their space is lovely as-is. (Seriously, it’s the perfect blank slate to dress up!) But, can we take a moment to appreciate this glam minimalist vibe? Simply exquisite.

Oh, and let’s not miss that lovely white floral cake suspension staged with champagne uplighting! Color us speechless – but who needs words when you can convey meaning with a minimalist sophisticated look like this?

Between a crystal chandelier dripping overhead, luxurious white and cream lounge spaces, and chic gold candle arrangements, this sweet couple transformed the space into a romantic retreat made to celebrate their love. And, of course, there is no better way to seal the deal than with a kiss!

Cheers to customizing a space that is perfect for you and sweetheart to say “I do” and kick off your next chapter together on the right foot. Pop the bubbly!

The Perfect Order to Book Wedding Vendors

You heard, “will you marry me?” and you said “YES!” Fireworks went off, and now, wedding bells are ringing in the distance. Dry those happy tears and get ready because it’s time to plan and execute. Yes, PLAN and EXECUTE! Don’t worry, the “I do” will come — but, first, you need to find your wedding vendors!

Planning a wedding is like working on a jigsaw puzzle. Everybody has their own way of putting it together, but it involves the same pieces to achieve the same result. You must hire a team of vendors who can produce the wedding of your dreams — but how you go about that will depend on your vision!

wedding vendors

Credit: Jasmine Lee Photography | Venue: Casa Real | Floral Design: Nicole Ha Design

Though, no matter how you work on that puzzle, you have to employ some type of strategy to mitigate the madness. Likewise, your wedding planning process must follow a strategy. As you research and book your wedding vendors, follow this order to keep your journey to the aisle as simple and efficient as possible.

1. Venue

Selecting your venue is the top priority. Some venues come with in-house services, which can influence the rest of the wedding vendors you need to hire. Plus, it can free up your wedding planning time, since you will know what is offered by booking there. #OneStopShop!

Side note: It is good to have an idea of your maximum guest count. This number can help serve as a tie-breaker if one venue can accommodate your guest better than the other contender.

Also, by choosing your venue, you are officially SETTING YOUR DATE! Once the date is set, the countdown begins. Cheers to that!

 

2. Wedding Planner

Although some couples choose not to hire a planner, we recommend it! Apart from taking many tasks off your plate, a wedding planner can truly help bring your dream day to life. Their years of experience and knowledge can guide you in areas where you aren’t so well-versed.

If your venue does not provide an assigned wedding planner, book one next. Remember: The clock is ticking! Hand them the pressure of lining up all your vendors, so you can sit back and approve. Talk about the good life!

 

3. Photographer + Videographer

Locking in your photographer and videographer is third on this list for two reasons:

  1.  Photographers and videographers book out far in advance. You need to get on their calendar ASAP!
  2. You will need to do your engagement shoot months before the wedding for save-the-dates, your website, pre-wedding video shoot, etc. 

You also need to make sure that you get along well with your photographer and videographer. You’ll be spending a lot of time with them on your big day! Make sure you give yourself ample time to find the right person that will see your vision and capture the perfect moment for you!

wedding vendors

Credit: Jasmine Lee Photography | Venue: Casa Real | Floral Design: Nicole Ha Design

4. Florist

We see all those flower arrangements you’ve been pinning on your Pinterest board! Spoiler alert: You’ll need a professional to replicate those looks. Booking your florist in advance will allow them to ensure they understand your vision to design and conceptualize the wedding style you want.

You’ll also want to talk to your florist in advance to make sure the flowers you wish to have are available. Peonies are beautiful, but they don’t bloom year-round. Your florist will be able to recommend similar flowers if it comes down to it.

 

5. Caterer + Rentals

It’s tough to choose between hors d’oeuvres: cocktail shrimp shooters, meat skewers, or mini sliders? All of the above? If your chosen venue does not provide catering, this is next on the list. Keep in mind the time it will take to finalize your menu. You don’t want this part to slip through the cracks!

Because caterers and rental companies tend to work closely, you might be able to knock this out in one step (fingers crossed). If not, book both caters and rentals simultaneously.

Side note:  Before signing anything, make sure that they can travel to your venue. And be sure to give them the proper headcount! 

 

6. Lighting + DJ

Be sure to give yourself time to find that DJ that understands your vibe and can deliver on the dance floor. Come ready with your desired playlist (or, at least, some ideas!) and ask for suggestions. Be sure to check out our previous blog about asking your DJ the right questions!

If you are dreaming of glamorous chandeliers and elaborate gobo light washes, this is also the right time to get your lighting situated. It’s your day and you deserve perfection!

Credit: Jasmine Lee Photography | Venue: Casa Real | Floral Design: Nicole Ha Design

7. Stationer

If you’re planning on booking a professional stationer for custom invitations and other paper goods, plan on getting in contact with them at least eight weeks before your save-the-dates are to be sent out. In the average planning process, this typically falls right at the halfway point.

 

8. Baker

Wedding cakes need some lead time to create something beautiful and delicious, but not quite so much as your caterer. Some bakers will only take a certain amount of clients per week, so booking them with enough time never hurts! Oh, and don’t forget to schedule your cake tasting as well — what a wedding perk! 

 

9. Hair + Makeup

If you plan to get your hair and makeup done professionally, do not forget to book your artist(s) in advance! You will need to prepare for at least one trial run to ensure you get your desired outcome. Remember: Your time is accounted for, and like everything else, this will pull you away from other tasks. Include it in your plans! 

So, let’s plan this wedding! With the right plan and strategy in place, it’s completely doable. To revisit our puzzle metaphor, just think about how satisfying it will be after you’ve put all the pieces together and can see the grand masterpiece unfold beautifully right before your eyes. 

elegance

Photo of the Day: Bountiful Elegance

Boy, do we have a photo to share with you today! This gorgeous floral arrangement encircling our 16-candle crystal chandelier exudes elegance and class, and we are HERE for it! *swoon*

With lush white and pink flowers, subtle touches of greenery, and glass + crystals dripping from all around, we think this fixture really dressed up Casa Real to the nines. Add some sweet chiffon drapery, extra greenery, and a sweetheart table bursting with blooms; sounds like a wedding day to remember, huh?

Event Services Showcase

Save the Date: Event Services Showcase

That’s right — our Event Services Showcase is back and we couldn’t be more thrilled to welcome you back! We missed connecting with our couples face-to-face, so we’re eager to meet and greet all of you wonderful engaged folks.

Event Services Showcase

When you attend our Event Services Showcase, you’ll get to meet the Fantasy Sound team and learn more about all of the services we provide to fulfill your event vision.

The next Event Services Showcase is on Wednesday, September 1st. We’re hosting three sessions:

  • 6:30 p.m.
  • 7:30 p.m.
  • 8:30 p.m.

You’ll be able to try out our photo booth, see our lighting fixtures in action, and ask us all of the questions floating around your head. We’re here for you! Grab your spot by RSVPing today.

Prefer a one-on-one meeting or need to connect with us before September? Let’s make it happen! We are available for personal consultations from Tuesday through Friday between 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. and on Saturdays between 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. We also have appointments available on Wednesday and Thursday evenings. Get in touch with us to schedule your consulation.

Photo of the Week: Romantic Luxury

How’s this for a taste of romantic luxury?

romantic luxury

Not sure what’s more picture-perfect: Staring into the eyes of forever? Or the way the natural light envelopes this sweet pair, outlining the perfect silhouette of love? We’ll take both, please!

Tall floral centerpieces and a majestic chandelier give us all the romantic energy, creating the perfect vibe for these lovebirds! (Oh, and did you peep the delicately adorned arbor at the entrance? Swoon!)

This beautiful couple made the most of their alone time under our crystal beaded chandeliers as Ryan Lam Photography captured this sweet moment at Palm Event Center. If this isn’t the epitome of romance, we don’t know what is!

crystal beaded chandelier

Product Spotlight: Crystal Beaded Chandelier

Today, we’re shining the light on one of our customer favorites: the Crystal Beaded Chandelier!

crystal beaded chandelier

Pictured at: Casa Real

This stunning event lighting choice comes in several sizes. The photos above showcase three of our crystal beaded chandeliers: 12×12, 9×9, and 6×6. Talk about a dazzling effect! *swoon*

This beauty makes a splash over the dance floor, cocktail hour space, or wherever you need to make a statement. Since we have several sizes, you can get as creative as you’d like with your lighting design. Guests will love feeling like crystals are raining down on them!

Bonus points for pairing these hanging chandeliers with lush greenery and florals that tie in your event theme — like these, that are just dripping in white and green foliage!

Interested in having our crystal beaded chandelier at your wedding or special event? Get in touch today!

crystal beaded chandelier

Photo of the Week: Crystal Beaded Chandelier

crystal beaded chandelier

Without a doubt, the couple is the main attraction of the wedding. In order for the memory of such a spectacular day to last forever, the “shot” has to get captured. With every photo, there should be an eye-catching focal point.  In some cases, it’s a sunset with beautiful orange hues. In other cases, it’s a gorgeous chandelier that makes it rain over a pair of newlyweds!

The chandelier pictured is made up of:
– 12×12 crystal beaded chandelier
– 9×9 crystal beaded chandelier
– 6×6 crystal beaded chandelier

It is the perfect centerpiece to amp up the luxury at a wedding. Time stops when it feels like you are dancing under sparkling stars or glittering raindrops.  And, of course, the custom monogram gobo is the fairy dust that lightly glazes over the dance floor tying all ideas into one: Love

Ask about our crystal chandeliers today!

indoor venues

Venues: Outdoor vs. Indoor – Which is better?

Planning a wedding is hard.  That’s a no-brainer.  All of the emotions and ideas have a way of creating chaos like no other.  This is the event where everything matters — all the big and small details. One of the hardest decisions you’ll face is researching venues and selecting the one that will bring your dream wedding to life. 

Should it be indoors with high ceilings, A/C, heat, and soaring windows?  Or, should Mother Nature be the backdrop for your wedding photos and as you stand at the altar and exchange vows?  

With all the pros and cons for both, weighing out potential venues can be difficult.  Luckily, we’ve compiled a handful of tips to help you make the best decision for your big day.  After all, choosing your venue can feel like half the battle has been won!  (Well, almost.)

Let’s get right into things.

outdoor venues

Outdoor Events: Pros

2020 has undoubtedly changed the way we do many things, like picking a venue. A major perk of outdoor weddings is that they are lower-risk due to the open-air setting.  Social distancing is easier to manage when you have acres of real estate with an uncompromised view of the altar!  

However, there are many other reasons to celebrate love in the great outdoors.  Imagine a backdrop of lush greenery, mountains, or ocean waves kissing the sand as you say, “I do!”  Plus, the decor can be simple!  Verdant green fields complemented by floral-filled gardens or the contrast of blue water against soft sand can serve as decor that complements your big day.  Natural beauty wins!  

Psst, don’t forget about natural lighting — it is unmatched for stunning wedding photos!  Or, plan for the perfect sunset picture with your partner that is bar none. Cue the heart eyes!   

 

Outdoor Events: Cons

Mother Nature, as beautiful as she is, is an untameable force.  Your beautiful, natural backdrop comes with a chance of rain or strong winds that can ruin hairstyles, cause wardrobe malfunctions, or compromise the venue decor.  Heat, humidity, pollen, or creepy crawler friends can also bring some discomfort to you and your guest.

Outdoor venues also require more contingency plans. Consider these questions before selecting your outdoor venue:

  • Where do you and your guests go if it rains?  
  • Is there a cost to the “plan B” location?  
  • Can guests wear heels?  
  • Will your centerpiece hold against strong gusts of winds?  
  • How well will your buttercream wedding cake hold against the heat?  
  • Will your caterers be able to keep the food at the right temperature?  
  • Are there any permits or restrictions (including noise ordinances) that are required?  
  • Is there enough power for entertainment equipment?   
  • Will you need to rent canopies, tables, chairs, and linens, flatware to place the sound system and possibly portable restrooms and generators?  

As you can see, there is a lot to think about when celebrating in the great outdoors. But, for most who choose outdoor venues, being one with nature is well worth the extra considerations!

indoor venues

Indoor Events: Pros

Undeniably, the best thing about an indoor wedding venue is CONTROL.  There is a sense of confidence knowing that weather will not be as big of an issue with indoor wedding venues.  There is freedom when climate control is a guarantee!  

Logistics will be easier for the guests, caterers, coordinators, and the army of event pros that’ll make your wedding dreams come true.  Most venues provide the basics of tables, chairs, and even linens. Still, at a bare minimum, you can rest assured that the venue comes fully equipped with power outlets, bathrooms, and a kitchen area — features that you won’t typically find outdoors. 

Indoor venues also tend to be more handicap accessible.  Whatever cake you choose, the frosting will hold up — so go for the buttercream icing!  Plus, you don’t have to worry about whether food will be stored at the proper temperature. Get fancy and serve that charcuterie board, confidently knowing that it will hold up throughout your entire event! 

 

Indoor Events: Cons

Keep in mind, though, that indoor venues come with their own set of nuances.  There are possible decor restrictions. Maybe the rustic, candlelit look cannot be fully executed because your barn venue doesn’t allow fire due to the hazard. Other venues may not let you hang anything from the ceilings, so you will need to adhere and work around their established look.

You will also need to consider if the venue holds your number of guests.  With limited space available, cutting down the guest list can get hard.  Do your guests get a good view from any place that they are sitting?  Will artificial lighting be used?  Lighting for the perfect photos can be a challenge, especially if the venue is dim and there are not enough windows to let the natural lighting in. Fortunately, you can book a lighting company to come in and solve that problem!  

Ultimately, it is your big day and what you envision is what matters most.  With every decision, make sure to weigh out your pros and cons — all the details matter, from the season to the time of the day.  Before signing on the dotted line, read all the details and fine print.  Ask all the questions — they are never in vain!

boho chic

Photo of the Week: Boho Chic

boho chic

The beauty of a boho chic wedding is in its airy, natural earth tones that accent the bride and groom. Its distinct, soft color palette sets a romantic feel that knits nature, harmony, and love into one. Though the decor is minimal for a boho chic celebration, our quintessential wood bead chandelier will bring your wedding together like pages from an enchanted woodland book. Get in touch to add it to your upcoming event.

Photo of the Week

You know we love when our Rustic Edison Beam Chandeliers get dressed up in florals, but they’re just as pretty on their own too!

Photo of the Week

Did you know that we now offer custom neon signs?! We love this one that lives in our office, and we would love to design one for your event too!

Photo of the Week

Did you know that our Statue LOVE Letters also come in white?! We were so excited to unveil them at Romance in the Vineyards and we hope you love them as much as we do!

Photo of the Week

 

We are obsessing over our new Mid Century Shiplap Wall! It paired so well with our Geometric Chandeliers and Nicole Ha‘s amazing florals at Romance in the Vineyards. We can’t wait to share more photos!