How to Style an Industrial Venue

by | Oct 6, 2023 | News


Industrial venues are renowned for their architectural allure, characterised by exposed brickwork, metal frameworks, and expansive spaces. While this creates an awe-inspiring backdrop, the challenge lies in softening the harsh edges to transform the space into a warm, inviting environment suitable for a wedding or celebratory event. If you’re intrigued by the prospect of converting a rustic industrial venue into a cosy, intimate space, read on! Here are six pointers to achieve that perfect balance of soft and hard, warm and cool, fresh and timeless:

1. Embrace the Venue’s Character

You’ve got to flaunt what your mama gave you, and it’s no different when it comes to rustic industrial venues! The key to styling these spaces is to embrace their character, rather than try hide it. Let the venue speak for itself. Look to highlight exposed beams, bare bricks, and metal fixtures. These elements all tell a story, and incorporating them into your design adds authenticity and depth to the experience.

Did you know that Factory51 used to be a Laminex factory? Owner, Beau Vedelago, embraced the original exposed brick walls, choosing to highlight them with strings of festoon lights for added warmth. The factory’s original timber floors were also repurposed for a bar wall and bathroom door. 

2. Choose a Soft Colour Palette

Opt for a colour palette that imbues warmth and softness. Hues like blush, cream, and taupe help to counterbalance the bold, stark features of an industrial setting. Similarly, anchoring your design in earthy tones works well to complement materials already in the space.

If you’re keen to move on from the ever popular neutral palette, don’t be afraid to use a splash of colour. A soft colour palette adds a touch of romance to a rustic industrial space characterised by hard edges, cold surfaces, and raw textures. The key is to opt for colours that are subtle, yet can effectively mitigate the harshness of industrial elements:

Blush Pink:

  • Role: Introduces a touch of femininity and softness.
  • Combination: Works well with neutral tones and metallic accents.
  • Application: Can be introduced through flowers, seat cushions, or table runners.

Sage Green:

  • Role: Brings in an element of nature, offering a calming effect.
  • Combination: Pairs beautifully with wood and metallic elements.
  • Application: Can be incorporated through plants, linen napkins, or stationery accents.

Dusty Blue:

  • Role: A soothing touch that brings in a vintage feel.
  • Combination: Pairs well with other soft tones and metallic hues.
  • Application: Ideal for table runners, scattered cushions, or place cards.


  • Role: A light purple hue that adds a touch of elegance and romance.
  • Combination: Works well with greens, blues, and neutral tones.
  • Application: Can be used in floral arrangements or textiles.

Gold Accents:

  • Role: Adds a touch of luxury and warmth without overwhelming the space.
  • Combination: Beautiful when contrasted with softer, muted tones.
  • Application: Can be used in lighting fixtures, cutlery, or decorative accessories.
3. Texturise with Fabrics

Balance the hardness of metal and wood with soft textiles. Think sheer table runners, velvet drapes (Factory51 already has these!) and plush lounge settings. These textures create a visual and sensory contrast, making the space inviting and warm. Use rugs, cushions, and even lap blankets generously for layers of comfort. Fabrics with different textures and patterns will add visual interest to the space. Linens and silks can sway gracefully, adding a touch of romanticism. Use soft coloured textiles to balance the rawness of concrete, metal, and wood.

Ceremony Ideas: Draping hung elegantly over a ceremony arbour softens a brick backdrop, and layered rugs can form a dramatic ceremonial aisle.

4. Greenery and Flowers

Incorporate greenery and flowers to breathe life into your rustic industrial space. Consider hanging installations, table centerpieces, and bouquets that reflect the organic, unrefined aesthetic. Be sure to mention your venue to your florist so they can work with the overall vision. The infusion of nature’s touch not only adds freshness and vibrancy, but also has a softening effect on the raw industrial elements.

Don’t want to lift a finger? Factory51 offers fresh greenery as an optional addition for your wedding or event. Choose from silver dollar eucalyptus or olive leaf, and we’ll style these along your tablescape for you!

5. Table Settings

We’ve come a long way from the mismatched table settings of the early 2010s! Whilst mason jars, lace runners, and DIY touches were seen in every nook and cranny of rustic industrial events, today’s offering is more pared back and refined. Tablescapes are less cluttered and more intentional (which is a plus if you need space for feasting platters). Clients are choosing to focus on delivering a few elements well, rather than having the entire kitchen sink on display. Whether it’s an abundance of flickering candles, monogrammed linen napkins, or coupe glassware; choose decor items in soft tones, ensuring they maintain a soothing atmosphere.

6. Give the Space a Glow Up

Adorn your industrial space with varied lighting options. String lights, Edison bulbs, and an array of candles can create a magical aura. The gentle glow emanating from these sources will cast a soft illumination, instantly making the space feel intimate and magical. Opt for lights with a warm glow to illuminate the soft colors, enhancing the overall ambiance. Play with shadows and lights to highlight architectural details. Pay some attention to your lighting, and the space will be sure to get a glow up!

Factory51 boasts a giant crystal chandelier suspended from the ceiling, giving the space an elegance and opulence. It pairs perfectly with its industrial surrounds, and is a favourite with our engaged couples.

Celebrate Contradictions

Styling a rustic industrial venue is about celebrating contradictions. It’s where the rawness of industrial elements meets the elegance of soft styling, resulting in a setting that’s not only visually arresting but also warmly inviting. A space where stories of the past lay the foundation for the tales of tomorrow – your tales, uniquely personal and infinitely beautiful.

If you’re looking for an industrial space that is also soft, warm, and intimate, be sure to reach out to us! Factory51 is the perfect space for your wedding or special event, and we’d love to show you around.



07 33240844
51 Holdsworth St Coorparoo QLD