Some of the most memorable wedding moments take place on the dance floor, and brides-to-be are increasingly looking to get creative with this space. There are so many choices when it comes to dancing the night away, so we sat down dance floor expert Chris from DFW Dance Floors to break it all down!
What are the different options when it comes to dance floors? What sizes, shapes, materials, finishes, etc?
Dance floors can be made from anything that makes a safe dancing surface: wood, acrylic, vinyl, aluminum – whatever you want to dance on. Most of the floors we provide have acrylic (aka plexiglas) surfaces. We love using it because it provides unsurpassed gloss, smoothness, and color uniformity. We designed our floors so that we can continually flip and change out the acrylic surfaces to keep that stunning gloss our clients love. Any of the opaque colors of acrylic can be used for a surface, so custom colors and patterns are a cinch.
Another option is to use clear acrylic over a decorative surface applied to the panel substrate, such as in our “smoked mercury mirror” floor.
We have designed our acrylic floors so that the edges of the acrylic sheets meet, so the seams are as small as possible, and are essentially invisible except when standing on the floor.
The only limitation on the standard sizes of our floors is that they must be built in 2′ multiples, although we are certainly capable of providing any particular size, to an accuracy of 1/64″. Given enough advance notice, we can provide truly gigantic floors, because we manufacture our own. Our largest floor to date was 4800 square feet, and our current capacity is about 8000 square feet. I don’t know of any vendor in the US with our capacity, and we are about to manufacture another 3200 square feet.
Besides rectangles, we have circular floors in diameters of 16′ and 24′, and are planning a 32′ diameter floor. These floors can be split into quadrants, so they can be stretched into ovals, or used to round corners, commonly at the end of the floor that is farthest from the stage, to provide an elegant that eases traffic flow around the floor.
What factors should brides-to-be consider when choosing a dance floor?
Size, color(s), shape, and obviously, price.
For size, we usually recommend having double the square footage as the number of anticipated guests, on the assumptions that 1/3 of the guests will dance simultaneously, and that each dancer needs six square feet. However, the bride knows her guests, and may want a larger floor. If there are times where everyone will be on the floor, then take the number of guests and multiply it by 6 for the square footage. If the wedding has a “country theme” and the guests will be two-stepping, you’ll need a very big floor.
Obviously the size of the floor is limited by the venue, and more guests need more tables, so there is usually a balancing act and compromise.
Colors should be selected to complement the other decor. Lighting does dramatically affect the appearance of the floor, and experimentation or the experience of the planner should be used in the color selection. I was astonished to see how our “platinum” floor looked under violet lights – it was amazing. Colors can be mixed in any pattern, of course. The floor trim color should be considered, as well. Standard is silver, but the trim can be painted in any color, to match the color of the floor, or to complement other decor.
Regarding shapes, brides should consider the room layout and features, and how much “flair” or uniqueness they want. Sometimes a curve corner will create a bit more room for walking around or will allow one more table to be placed. With a stage, the most space-efficient floor starts with a straight line, flush with the stage or stage facade. If you have a bit more room, and want something a bit flashier, turn a square floor 45 degrees to create a “diamond” or use a whole round floor.
What’s your most popular dance floor for weddings?
Glossy white, by far. It’s the most traditional, and is a great palette for colored lights and gobo monograms.
What is the most memorable dance floor you have constructed?
It’s hard to forget a 4800 square foot “great white lake” but I’m sure you mean in a decorative sense. The “mercury mirror” floor was almost six months in development, and is truly unique and elegant. It’s a single piece of artwork, so the the panels are actually numbered for correct placement. We’ve used it three times now, and have improved on it each time. For this coming December, we have a floor that might take its place as most memorable: a 56 foot square diamond, set on a 6 inch high platform, with a 35 foot circular hole in the middle where a rotating stage will go. We definitely won’t be forgetting that one!
Photo 4 – Flashbox Photography