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The Lowdown on Lighting Terms

One of the most inexpensive ways to take a blank venue space from drab to fab is through the use of lighting. Often overlooked and underrated, lighting can make everything and everyone in the room look better.

Here is a list of some terms you should know when you start thinking about designing the lighting for your event.

Cadence Studios | The Lowdown on Lighting Terms


Uplights are the quickest and most dramatic way to  transform any room. Uplights can be made to display any color. We recommend selecting a color that ties in with your linens, florals, or overall color palette.


A pin spot is a sharp, focused accent light directed at a specific element such as your cake or floral centerpieces. Think of it as a spot light.


A wash thankfully doesn’t involve water or soap, but is the most commonly used term for event lighting. Washes in lighting are merely broad projections of illumination, color, and/or pattern.

Design Projection

Also known as a gobo, your logo, monogram, or other design motif can easily be made into a
custom illuminated projection. These are very popular at weddings.

Bistro Lights

You can string bistro lights over a dining area, across a lawn, in a barn, and almost anywhere for added decor and elegance. Installation of this type of lighting can often be labor intensive depending on the venue, but overall bistro lights are very budget friendly.