How to Choose Your Wedding Colors

When a little girl dreams about her fantasy wedding, one of the things she thinks about is color. But using the color palette you've always wanted may not work when it comes down to the real thing. Consider the season, location, and theme of the wedding.

The color scheme a woman chooses for her wedding is important because it not only reflects the personality of the bride and tone of the wedding, it also provides background for the wedding photos. Your bridesmaids will wear the palette you choose, so the color should flatter them. You'll use color in other places, too. Linens, flowers, personalized favors, and décor will all reflect your choice of hue.

Close your eyes and reflect on the colors of summer. Sunny yellow, watermelon, and pool blue come to mind. When we think of autumn, we often picture soft gold, pumpkin, and chocolate. Brighter hues are in store for a winter wedding. Deep shades of purple, cranberry, or navy are appropriate, as well as a black-and-white color scheme. A spring wedding is the perfect time for a new beginning. Colors like lavender, rose pink, and of course spring green, take the lead.

You'll need to consider the existing colors in your wedding and reception venues so there won't be any mismatch. Bring color swatches with you to check that your palette blends with walls, rugs, and furniture. Pastel shades might not go well in a country club with dark wallpaper and mahogany furniture, so adjust accordingly. Similarly, strong hues could overwhelm a simple garden wedding.

A casual wedding on an exotic beach calls for to bright colors. How about using tropical flowers as inspiration? Hot pink, bright orange, and deep yellow flowers make beautiful bouquets, garlands, and centerpieces. Add natural accents like bamboo and seashells. Bridesmaids can wear complimentary-hued sundresses and sport hibiscus in their hair. Show your hospitality by providing wedding favors like treats in mini tin pails or seashell tealights.

If you find your wedding venue already heavy on the décor, use some crafty thinking to work your color scheme into it. The best approach is to make your primary color neutral. Cream, gray, or white looks beautiful accented with heavier colors. Create centerpieces of white hydrangeas with bright blue iris or yellow narcissus. Your bridesmaids will wear a neutral dress accented with a colorful sash and carry a bouquet of bright flowers. Guests will enjoy receiving favors of "champagne" bubbles or frosted glass coasters.

A garden wedding doesn't need too much added color. Flowers should compliment the existing gardens and bridesmaid dresses should be in simple, solid hues. There is probably enough green, so use other colors like peach, yellow, and lilac. Tables can be set with lace and vintage touches. Gift your guests with something nostalgic like a scented soap or paper fan.

Sarah L. Mitchell is a party planner and writer for Partease, an online source for wedding favors and gifts. Follow the link here for the latest trends in wedding favors.