MARK STEPHEN Experiential Agency | essence festival 2018
MARK STEPHEN EXPERIENTIAL AGENCY is an award-winning, multidisciplinary company offering extraordinary  brand experiences that surprise, delight and drive results.
essence, festival, 2018, neon, greenery, gold, design, yellow, New Orleans

Essence Fest 2018 Design Trends

Essence Fest 2018 Design Trends

Posted by markstephen in markblog 24 Jul 2018

Design Trends from the Essence Fest

We recently returned from the ESSENCE Fest in New Orleans where we designed and managed a number of activations, including the Beauty and Style Expo that housed brands such as Carol’s Daughter, Creme of Nature, and Aveeno to name a few. Throughout the three-day event, we took note of several interesting event design trends to which attendees responded the most. These trends are truly being driven by social media.



Neon is having its moment. These glowing tubes of colorful light show no signs of slowing down. This year we designed the Beauty and Style stage around a custom neon statement, “Hello Gorgeous.” Other sponsors such as Unilever also incorporated neon, fabricated quotations into their activations.



From sponsors Aveeno to AT&T, a common thread in this year’s exhibit designs were large floral elements and greenery. Bold palm fronds and other natural accents were strategically integrated into the decor and photo backdrops.



From mock magazine covers to a swing suspended under oversized beauty icons, guests used far-from-ordinary backdrops to capture the moment for their social media channels. We designed the event with selfies in mind.



We saw the advancement of the color yellow throughout the show. From eye-catching graphics to guest attire, this bold color was truly there to make a statement and standout.


Balloon installations

Balloons have been reinvented. Fully developed balloon installations dominated sections of the show. From oversized orbs to inflatable stars connected like strands of DNA, these inflatable installations were truly a work of art.


Accents of gold

Scattered throughout the show were touches of gold strategically dotting the space. From gold tattoos to gold balloons and metallic stars on the walls, gold became the
go-to accent for the Beauty and Style Expo at ESSENCE Fest.

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