How to Choose Your Wedding Colors

How to Choose Your Wedding Colors
One of the biggest decisions you will make when planning your wedding is picking the color scheme. The dresses and tuxes, decorations, flowers, and sometimes even the venue depend on the colors you choose.

Follow these easy steps to make the best decision concerning the colors for your wedding:
  1. Use your favorite shade. Start with a color you absolutely love, and then find accent colors that complement it well.  Choose either tonal shades or a contrasting pop of color.
  2. Consider the setting. What does your venue look like? What color are the floor, walls, curtains, and other decorations? If there is already a strong color scheme, you should consider working with those colors. If you’re set on a particular color, look for a venue with a more neutral color scheme.
    • Tip: Older historical buildings tend to have strong patterns that may clash with your own colors, so make sure you pay attention to those factors.
  3. Prepare for multiple color schemes. Sometimes the location of the ceremony and the location of the reception have very different colors or tones. You may need to have two color schemes for decorations or two major colors with accent colors that connect the two locations.
    How to Choose Your Wedding Colors
  4. Pick colors based on your favorite flower or bouquet. If you don’t have a favorite color, but do have a favorite flower, use the flower to decide on a color scheme. Pick the color of the bloom that you like best and then choose accent colors to match.
  5. Choose colors bases on your style. Are you a vintage bride?  Vintage color schemes tend to be more muted or rustic.  Modern aesthetic?  Modern weddings infuse bright pops of colors and bold patterns.  Romantic? Choose colors that are soft and feminine.
  6. Consider the season or time of year. Similar to number four, look at the colors in nature at the time of your wedding and pick a color scheme that complements what you see outside.
    • Tip: You’ll have to plan in advance for this one!
    • Tip: Pastels and bright colors look best during the spring and summer while variations of one particular shade are better for fall or winter weddings.
  7. How many colors should you have? Up to five colors is fairly normal for weddings. However, multiple color schemes take careful planning and you need to make sure you aren’t overwhelming your wedding with too many colors. Two shades of one color and one complementary color tend to be the best option if you want multiple colors.
  8. Remember the clothes. Some colors just don’t look good on anyone. When you are picking a color scheme, remember you will have to pick dresses for the wedding party in at least one of those colors.
How to Choose Your Wedding Colors

If you want your color scheme to match your personality, consider these descriptions of colors:
  • Red: passionate, loyal, impulsive, luxurious, dramatic
  • Orange: spicy, zesty, fun-loving, spontaneous, boisterous, trendy
  • Yellow: spiritual, cheerful, sweet, outdoorsy
  • Green: wise, balanced, harmonized, affectionate, refined
  • Blue: tranquil, patient, wise, balanced, lovable
  • Introspective: royal or pale blue
  • Extroverted: turquoise or aqua
  • Purple: outgoing, tolerant, witty, charming, sweet, passionate
  • Pink: compassionate, sweet, feminine, demure, romantic
  • Black: elegant, classic, mysterious, dignified, sexy, sophisticated
  • Rainbow: trendy, unconventional, fun, playful
How to Choose Your Wedding Colors
If you’re having a seasonal or holiday-themed wedding, you might want to stick to theses tried and true seasonal color schemes.
  • Spring: pale, not much contrast: think of the first blooms of the year
    • Shades of purple, pink, or green
    • Use soft palettes of watercolors and pastels
  • Summer: hot or bright pops of color: think of your favorite parts of summer, such as swimming, fireworks, and popsicles
    • Avoid all-over neon which can overwhelm the senses
    • Use paler colors with bright accents instead
  • Autumn: earthy tones: think of falling leaves, bare trees
    • Persimmon, dark mossy green, deep marigold
    • Neutrals with chocolate browns
  • Winter: rich tones to contrast the bareness of winter: think of the holidays – Christmas, New Year’s, Valentine’s Day
    • Rich shades of red, blue, or purple
    • Metallics
How to Choose Your Wedding Colors

Lastly, don't forget to check out wedding inspiration boards on our blog here or at places like Pinterest.  You can also consider using a website like Design Seeds which automatically puts together pretty palettes for ideas and inspiration.  Whatever color scheme you choose, make sure it’s one you love. Don’t just pick the colors that are forecasted to be hot or popular this year. Remember, it’s your wedding and you get to make all the decisions.

Image Credits: Hanging bridesmaids dresses, Fuchsia and orange bouquet, Tonal bridesmaids dresses, Rustic barn venue, New Year sparkle palette

Author signature: Elizabeth Grace

 is an undergraduate at Ohio Northern University with a double major in professional writing and creative writing and a minor in psychology. Liz writes for My Wedding Reception Ideas as well as creates multi-modal writing projects for Re:Media, an Ohio Northern University online publication.

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