The Perfect Match

One of my fondest memories from childhood is of my sister and I swinging our polka dot legging clad legs on the side of our bunk beds as she somberly explained to me the rules of matching. We all know them. Patterns are paired with solids. Colors must be paired with a neutral. And the list goes on and on. These may have been suitable rules for navigating color palettes at one time. Luckily for those who love to play with color, most of them are now obsolete or like most rules of thumb, do not have to be followed exactly. Unfortunately these rules have been ingrained in all of us and have had the sad side effect of making a lot of people afraid to use color and patterns at all.

This strict "matchy-matchy" frame of mind can actually make planning your wedding, event, or even your outfit more difficult than it really needs to be. I am happy to free you from your neutral prison and inform you that it is now possible to be trendily mismatched. You may now often hear the phrase, "It doesn't have to match, it just has to go." As in go together and have some sort of unifying theme. Take a look at these adorable tea tins from The patterns and colors do not strictly match. Yet  they all have a vintage feel and use muted colors. Instead of clashing, they say "of course, we all belong together!"

Another way to ease a little stress in a wedding and go with the intentionally mismatched look, is to let your bridesmaids choose their own dresses. There are a couple ways to do this. You could specify a color, or a few colors for your bridesmaids to choose from and let them choose the dress style.  You could also choose a dress and allow them to choose from a selection of colors.
This photo by Jose Villa photography, courtesy of Plum Invitations,  shows how these bridemaids each wear a different dress, yet still coordinate. The key is to make it appear intentional, not thrown together. You do this easily by picking one characteristic that is uniform, like style, fabric, or pattern.

When choosing your colors don't be afraid to use color combinations that you would not usually see together. A good way to think about color is, if it exists in nature it can exist in your color scheme! Gain inspiration from flowers for bright color schemes. For example, yellow and purple are often thought of as clashing. Take a look at this painting by David Wagner. It is a perfect example of how well these colors do compliment one another.
Use your colors confidantly and creatively. Remember that as long as there are a few basic cohesive elements, you can tie virtually anything of your own interest together to create a unique theme.

~ Jenna

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