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Kevin Dennis

Forecast 2018: Four Big Event Design Trends

Four top event design trends from event tech expert Kevin Dennis.

2018 is here, and with it comes a whole new year of exciting events trends. Soon, prospective clients will be lining up to find out how you will turn these trends and their event dreams into reality. We want to help you be prepared for the rush, so we’ve assembled some of the hottest upcoming ideas in lighting and design just for you!

1. Clients Care About the Environment
Clients hosting all types of events, from corporate retreats to gala weddings, are increasingly aware of their impact on the environment. In 2018, expect to be asked how lighting and design goals can be achieved with a responsible carbon footprint. Use LED lights, living plants, locally grown flowers and greens, and recyclable materials to achieve their vision, and you’ll be rewarded for your creativity and resourcefulness.

2. Keep the Industrial Chic
One of the hottest looks for 2018 is the high contrast industrial-meets-elegance concept. Clients aren’t just resigning themselves to booking plain old ballrooms anymore; they want abandoned warehouses, old factories and decaying-yet-beautiful urban backdrops for their events. Add fine china, top-of-the-line linens, twinkling Edison lights, lots of greens and floral centerpieces, and you have the recipe for a very cool, yet very sophisticated overall design. As a bonus, the urban, industrial chic movement is the perfect setting for the year’s next big trend: using metallic accents in design.

3. Metallic Madness Continues
A variety of different metallic finishes has been popular for the last few years, and metal accents are coming back strong in 2018. Copper, rose gold, and gunmetal are some of the favorite hues. Silver will take a backseat to them in most designs, but we’ll still see hints of it occasionally. Anything that sparkles, including iridescent materials, will be popular towards the end of the year.

4. Look Up for Hanging Installations
Installing elaborate hanging greens, florals and lights really took off in 2017, and is expected to stay very popular in 2018. More and more clients recognize that lighting can completely transform a space, so they are willing to include things such as Edison bulbs, custom chandeliers and suspended seas of greenery and lights in their budgets. Hanging installations are meant to make a major impression and to keep people engaged, the perfect touch for a year that will focus heavily on guest experience. 

These trends just scratch the surface of what’s in store this year. There is so much more to come, and so much that still needs to be created. The opportunities are limitless if you use your imagination, so get out there and start designing amazing 2018 events today!

Kevin Dennis is the editor of WeddingIQ and the owner of Fantasy Sound Event Services, a full-service event company based in Livermore, Calif. Dennis is the current chapter president for Silicon Valley NACE and previous national president for WIPA.

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