Turning the lights down can do a lot for your dinner party. It creates a feeling of coziness in the space and it makes small spaces look bigger. Keeping the lights low puts your guests at ease and allows them to focus on the company and the flavors of the food. Lighting is often one of the last things a host considers but it sets the mood of your party more than the food and decorations.
Here are my tips for creating mood lighting when you entertain:
- Swap out your 100 watt bulbs for 40 watt bulbs.
- Have dimmer switches installed on all of your switch plates so you can adjust the mood on the fly. Click Here to learn How to Install Dimmer Switches.
- Don't use fluorescent light bulbs anywhere in your home. They have a cold, eerie glow and they don't usually work with dimmer switches.
- Use multiple sources of lighting to create a softly lit space. Lighting should be at different heights/levels and it should be set to a consistent brightness.Keep the lighting low and indirect. Avoid overhead lighting because it casts shadows on peoples' faces.
- Christmas lights, rope lights, uplighting, and low-watt task lights are perfect for accentuating the strongest elements of your home.Tuck them under cabinets, aim them along walls and down staircases.
- Use lighting to accentuate your party's tables and decorations. These are the spots to add extra sparkle.
- Candles are KING! Candles set the perfect glow and you can never have too many. Put them EVERYWHERE! Use mirrors to reflect the flickering candlelight and double it's effect. Also, make sure your candles are lit for the entire party. Purchase candles that last the length of the event. Check them every hour in case they've blown out and keep lighters/extra candles at the ready.
- As the party goes on the lights should continue to get dimmer. Turn down the lights as it gets later. However, I never blow out the candles until the last guest has left or retired for the evening to keep up the ambiance.
- Avoid accidental lighting by disabling certain lights with your circuit breakers. For example, opt for only candlelight in the bathroom. If your guests are turning lights on and off and opening/closing doors all the time it will negatively impact the mood of the party. Disabling the lights via circuit breaker solves that problem entirely.
- Keep safety in mind. Make sure there are no cords to trip over or lamps near sinks. Candles should be secure and not in danger of being knocked over by swinging elbows.
- The best restaurants choose their lighting levels and set them. So whether it's via remote or a marking next to the correct dimmer setting, it will always be set to the perfect level each night. Practice your lighting set up and determine your ideal "settings". Create a system so that it can be seamlessly replicated for every event thereafter.
Taking the time to create soft, cozy lighting for your party is one of the best ways to ensure a great event. You can get all of your party lighting needs at Home Depot. For a great price, stop by Groupon Coupons before you shop for discounts and coupon codes. Current offers include Free Shipping and up to 55% off Outdoor Lighting.
Have fun setting the mood!