Holiday Party Inspiration from Tinsel & Twine

The countdown to sparkly dresses, lots of bubbly, and awkward small talk with your boss is on. To celebrate holiday party season, our design pals at Tinsel & Twine took over the styling of the Green Building and 501 Union to show off the true spirit of a stellar holiday party: the beautiful mess of the aftermath! Read through for their expert tips for creating an unforgettable night!


1) Create a stylish lounge area that provides the perfect place for guests to perch, drop glasses, and kick of shoes between dance sets. 

2) Since guests will likely be spending quite a bit of time at the bar, we like to use this space as a blank canvas for striking flowers, lights, or other decor details.


3) The venues feel polished without being stuffy, and intimate with enough floorspace for spins and  high-kicks. Our clients have always had an amazing time there. And any given party tends to look like this by the end of the night: a beautiful mess!

4) We love the Gatsby-esque spectacle of serpentine streamers. Pick a big moment-- a toast or kiss at midnight-- and cue a bass drop for a big, explosive moment to let these fly."

Set the Mood with These Exposed Bulb Lighting Designs

Lighting can make or break the vibe of your event. When was the last time you attended a killer party under fluorescent lights? Exactly. "Few things can affect the atmosphere of a venue as profoundly as lighting," says SOG Productions.  

Planning an event in a raw space like the Green Building gives you the ultimate creative freedom -- with a little strategic lighting design, you can highlight architectural details you want your guests to focus on, like the texture of the exposed brick walls or the height of the ceilings. You can also use lighting to make the large room feel more cozy by focusing on prime areas of the reception, like the bar, dinner tables, or the dance floor. 

Make sure your lights are installed on dimmers so you can control the mood as the night goes on. This is particularly important around the dance floor, so guests feel comfortable busting a move. And don't forget to light important decor elements that you spent hours crafting, like your guest book or family photo display. 

Keep reading for some of our favorite lighting designs at the Green Building, including a few we offer in-house! 

Photo by Tory Williams

Photo by Tory Williams

Light Curtain

Not much beats something simple that makes a statement. The light curtain extends from the ceiling to the floor to create a dreamy backdrop for any occasion while casting a soft glow that is sure to get everyone on the dance floor. 

Available as an in-house rental. Ask your coordinator for details. 

Photo by Quyn Duong

Photo by Quyn Duong

Light Drape

Think of the light drape as the light curtain's sassy sister. The light drape is our newest design sure to bring the extra oomph and will pull focus right to where you want it. Use it to highlight the bar or give the DJ a cool space to jam. 

Available as an in-house rental. Ask your coordinator for details. 

Photo by JBM Photography

Photo by JBM Photography

Ceiling Bistro Lights

So you've noticed we love the look of exposed bulb lights. We really don't think you can go wrong any way you use them! String them from wall to wall illuminating the wood beam ceiling to truly immerse your guests in the quintessential chic warehouse vibe. 

Photo by Quyn Duong

Photo by Quyn Duong

Chandelier Lights

The team at Stortz Lighting designed a custom lighting installation inspired by the structure of the Green Building. We love the way the string lights mimic the chandeliers. 

Photo courtesy of Universal Light & Sound

Photo courtesy of Universal Light & Sound

Pendant Lights

Universal Light & Sound's iconic hanging pendant lights have taken the Brooklyn wedding world by storm. The varying lengths of each cord create the ultimate starry sky effect. Dance the night away under the glow of these beauties. 


How to Make the Most Out of Open House

Attending an open house at the Green Building is one of the best ways to get a feel for it as your potential wedding venue. You can see the venue and our staff in action, and you can take your time exploring and asking questions as needed in a calm, no pressure environment. We always invite a few of our favorite vendors to join us, so open house is also a great opportunity for those who have already booked the venue but are still looking for vendors to help execute their dream wedding. Visit our calendar for upcoming open house dates, and check out some of our tips for making the most our of your visit:

Photo by Clean Plate Pictures

Photo by Clean Plate Pictures



  • Bring a friend or family member to bounce ideas off of – preferably someone whose opinion you value, but who won’t stand in the way of your vision.

  • Bring your phone, camera, and notebook to take notes, document the venue, and quickly find your favorite vendors on Instagram.

  • Visit our calendar to see if your date is available; if not, think about other dates you’d be open to — get ready to place a hold so you don’t miss out on your preferred season!



Take a peek at the venue's private suite – can you imagine yourself getting ready there, or having a quiet moment before the ceremony begins?  Is there enough light for hair and make-up, is the furniture comfortable, is there enough space for your wedding party?



Open house is a great time to meet potential vendors. You can ask about their familiarity with the venue and get to know their personalities in person rather than browsing endlessly online. Are they warm and friendly? Are they knowledgeable about the venue?



Be prepared to take many photos of the venue from all angles. If you notice a particular design element you like about the venue, document it! If you are visiting a few different venues, they could all start to blur together so you'll want to take note of standout features to jog your memory. 



Our venue coordinators will be onsite to answer any questions you have about hosting an event at the Green Building. When you book the space, you will be assigned a venue coordinator who will be your guide from the time you sign the contract until the last pickup after the wedding. Say hello to them at open house!  



In addition to getting a feel for the venue itself, keep an eye out for other spots that would be good photo ops for first look and family photos. Take a short walk around our block and you'll find plenty of interesting murals, quintessential Brooklyn stoops, colorful buildings, and industrial vignettes with tons character.



You’re going to be looking at tons of venues and meeting all kinds of people trying to sell you things throughout the planning phase, so try to make it fun. Taste all the food, drink all the booze. Turn it into a date night, and hit up one of these local spots after you leave open house. 

Where to Host an After Party in Gowanus

Last call is being served, the DJ has taken your final requests, and the tables have been cleared. It's the inevitable end to the blissful day, but you aren't quite ready to say good night. Luckily you don't have to stumble too far off to keep the night going. New spots are constantly popping up around Gowanus, so after you're done partying at the Green Building or 501 Union, invite your guests to join you at one of these local favorites.

Photo by City Love Photography

Photo by City Love Photography

Royal Palms Shuffleboard Club 
We've spent many evenings here shuffling our nights away. It's an ideal boozy activity - doesn't require too much movement but still gets everyone out of their seats. Courts are $40/hr with court-side bar service, and rotating food trucks are onsite to satisfy late night munchies.  Or if you're feeling generous, reserve a cabana with a 2-hr open bar for your late night revelers. 

Lavender Lake
For those looking for a classic after party bar with an expansive outdoor garden. Our favorite happy hour spot always treats our guests well at the end of the night. In fact, they've been known to craft a special cocktail for your guests only.  

Ample Hills Creamery
Small weekday elopement? Continue the charm with an ice cream social themed after party.  For parties of up to 110 guests, you can rent out their adorable party room and roof deck. Challenge your guests to take on the Trough, a family-style sundae made with 8 scoops of ice cream on top of  a whole pie. Top that with BYOB. Whiskey floats, anyone? 

You've been dancing all night, so if you're looking to keep up that energy, Insa's private karaoke is the spot. They've got 5 different themed karaoke rooms. The largest holds 22 people and goes for $160/hr. We're curious about the deep sea room. Do you think it's modeled after the canal?