Colors have a strong influence on the aesthetic and brightness of places, rooms and people. Moreover, they can change our visual and mental perception, depending on the meaning we give them, as well as our mood! That is why, when it comes to wedding planning and design, this is one of the main subjects. A summer wedding’s palette will give us a very different sensation than a winterly-style event.

If you’re about to get married, maybe you already decided the main color of your wedding (it could also become the theme of your event), but don’t know which ones should be paired to it. Or, maybe you found the perfect palette, but are not sure it’s the one right for your style and location… Or, you weren’t even considering having a full palette for your big day, and were planning on choosing flowers, decorations and details individually based on your preferences and not on the shades. That’s dangerous – you don’t want, in future, to look at your wedding photos and notice that something isn’t right: it’s better to prepare everything ahead, and build an aesthetically nice surround for your wedding pictures.

Whichever situation are you in, keep reading this article: you will find practical guidelines to help you with this fundamental choice.

How to choose your wedding color: where to start?

Let’s start from scratch, assuming you haven’t made your final decision yet. If you have, you can jump to the next paragraph, but I strongly recommend to read this one as well, to find some extra piece of advice.

Wedding and forbidden colors

If you are having a hard time to make up your mind, a good idea is to start by excluding options. You don’t have to avoid specific colors, but the ones you don’t like, or make you and your spouse-to-be feel uncomfortable, or trigger bad memories. Dark and dull colors could be lighten up, if matched correctly and carefully used – black can give a stylish and elegant touch, and show your personality! If you are hiring a wedding planner, he/she will certainly ask you which colors you absolutely don’t want for your big day.

The right color for your wedding

You have decreased your options, now it’s time to find at least one main color for your event. Stylish shades or something completely different? In the first instance, it will be easier to find decors and accessories of the right tone, and you’ll be sure to have a chic atmosphere. On the other hand, you can get a unique style and show all your personality.

You could pick your favorite color first, or a shade that holds a sentimental value to you two. The best option though, is to think specifically for the wedding. Each color connects to particular vibes. Decide which ones you would like to express on your wedding day: if you are looking for an elegant and modest atmosphere, maybe glitter pink isn’t the best choice (but if you just can’t give it up, you could use it anyway here and there for smaller details).

If you already choose it, let the wedding theme help you, especially if it’s connected to something material – even a food: lemon yellow might be paired with a nice deep blue, strawberry red with forest green. Or a specific object, or piece of furniture.

That’s exactly what we did here, at Isposas, for one of our latest settings. We “pulled out” colors from an ornamental object we liked – a handmade lampshade, and created the color palette for the entire mise en place.

If you don’t have a specific theme, visit your wedding venues to look around and imagine which colors can fit in there. The shades you’ll pick will not be isolated, but fully integrated in the settings (the church, the courthouse, the restaurant, and specific spaces for aperitif, dancing, cake-cutting, etc.). Many of them could be already decorated with very different styles, so the colors you are using may give back very different impressions.


I already found a color for my wedding

It’s a progress, but that doesn’t mean it’s going to be easier! If you choose a color as your theme, for example a gold-themed wedding, or you are sure you want one specific nuance, you need to find a style that fits right with that. And the tone you picked should also match the venues style, their furniture, and the colors already there. What if not – what if something looks terribly wrong with your color? We always suggest to be flexible, and try to consider other options. If you really can’t, because that shade has a particular meaning for you and your loved one, or it’s the only one you both like, then try to find some creative solutions. For instance, use it for small details and not for big decorations, or pair it with other nuances that enhance its qualities.

Practical suggestions: how to create the wedding palette

The main important thing is not to exaggerate: try to pick no more than 2-4 colors, or you may create confusion. There are different methods to select your wedding palette starting from one fixed color; here’s some examples using pink as first choice.

  • Tone-on-tone: use different shades of the same color, as antique pink and face powder pink.
  • Analogous colors: the ones that are side-to-side in the color wheel. In this case, the tones of pink closer to violet (lilac) and red (peach)
  • Complementary colors: a pair of colors with opposite qualities (light/dark, cold/warm), that together create a strong contrast – pink and green. Of course, you may also want to play a bit with the shades of these two choices!

Don’t limit yourself to the main shades, but explore all the tones. You could also think outside the box, and consider metallic or glitter colors: just don’t use it as a “regular” color, be careful and use it for details.

If you choose a vivid color, such as the Pantone of the year, I suggest you to balance it with a neutral hue, or, if you want more shades, use delicate and soft nuances for a lighter final effect. This way, you are playing both with contrasts and tones: see how you can move through several levels at the same time?

Be careful not to rely only on your good taste: use the color wheel to select complementaries, gradients and shades. A certain color pairing may look funny at first, but if you find the right tones you can create some truly original and right matches.

Also, keep in mind that when you go for printing, you’ll have to communicate the appropriate code of the tones you picked. This changes depending on the scale (RGB, CMY, Pantone, …). If you ask your typographer and your flower designer for a “mint green”, be sure you’ll get two different shades of green! You have to be clear, and use the right technical language, in order not to have colors that look similar, but are not the same.

As you can see, there are a lot of things to be considered – not only for the choice of the wedding palette, but also when it comes to matching, printing and rendering. You can find many useful online tools that can help you for comparing and extracting colors, and find the right codes. If you feel lost and confused, and don’t know where to start…contact me: a look from outside can definitely help!