One of the first decisions you’ll want to make when planning your wedding is choosing your wedding colors. After all, your choices will have a strong influence over many other important decisions—from dresses, flowers and invitations, down to the hue of the cocktails you’ll be serving. So while the decision is important, it doesn’t have to be scary! We’re here to help you select your colors and make the walk down the aisle feel more like a walk in the park. Below are nine tips below to help you choose your perfect wedding palette.

Picking the right wedding colors

The colors that matter

beach mood romantic pantone 2016
via Unsplash

Most everyone has a favorite color, so you might be motivated to choose your favorite as the start of your color palette. But think about what colors hold a special meaning to you and your partner. Maybe it’s emerald green because that’s what you were wearing the night you decided to tie the knot. Or maybe a placid blue that reminds you of a beach date early in your relationship. Pick colors that mean something special to each of you. Begin by prioritizing your favorite meaningful colors, then you can work towards choosing secondary hues that accompany your selections.

Get in the mood

Colors can help set the tone for your event. So use them to create a mood that will put you, and your guests, in the right state of mind. Bright colors will bring vibrancy and energy to your event. Deep or jewel tones can instill a sense of drama and luxury.

But be sure to create an atmosphere that feels right for you. Drama and indulgence may wow your guests but if you won’t feel relaxed in that setting it’s best to work with tones that will put you in a calm and cheerful spirit.

Putting your colors to use

As you begin choosing a handful of colors it will be important to designate certain jobs to certain colors. For example, the most vibrant shade should be used sparingly and as an accent. The most muted shade will serve as your background color (think drapes, table covers, invitations, etc.)

And remember that your your selections will need a neutral tone that will harmonize with the rest of the group. Try picking a natural shade that works with the location or venue. Natural woods and taupes will have a strong presence in most any event space so you can easily look to those hues to find a perfect match.

Finally, don’t make the mistake of picking too many colors. Having too many options will simply become overly complicated and too difficult to match. So make a point of limiting your selection to 4 colors to keep things manageable.

Other things to consider

Time of the year

time of season autumn fall leaves
via Unsplash

If you’re trying to figure out what shade bridesmaids should wear on your big day, consider the colors nature will be wearing. Seasonal patterns will sprout a bevy of colors that can inspire you: Yellows and soft pastels will complement a warm, spring day. Vibrant selections will be perfect for summer ‘I dos.’ And deep, rich hues will be fitting for an autumnal ceremony. The time of year will be especially important if you’re planning an outdoor event, so be sure to pick colors that won’t clash with the natural setting.

Winery wedding
via Danielle Poff Photography

The venue

If you already have a venue selected, consider it—and any natural surroundings—when making your decision. Destination weddings are going to carry an intrinsic theme: the nautical warmth of a seaside ceremony, or the rustic scenery of a mountain valley. If choosing an outdoor venue be sure to consider your surroundings and choose colors that complement the natural landscape. Vice versa, venues like a church, park, or tent will serve as a blank canvas for your nuptials. If your venue is indoors there’s nearly no limit to your chromatic scheme!

Still need wedding color help?

swatches paint color
via Unsplash

Swatch it!

If you’ve read the previous suggestions but find you’re having trouble visualizing color schemes, then your local hardware store or paint supplier will be a great resource! The paint department will have thousands of swatches to browse, and often swatches will be free for the taking. Walk the displays and collect colors that make an impression. By creating a physical palette you’ll see how favorite colors complement, or clash, in the real world and you’ll be able to confidently select the shades that move you.

Let fashion be your guide

fashion paris eiffel tower ilustreishon
by Ilustreishon

Researching wedding trends can ensure that your ceremony becomes the fashionable affair of the nuptial season. Look up the Pantone color of the year as a helpful guide and starting place. Or if you’re planning a wedding over 12 months out, forecasters will often begin predicting colors and trends a year in advance.

The internet is your friend

eat drink be married wedding
via Unsplash

If you’re still at a loss for finding the perfect wedding colors we’d recommend you research, research, research. A few simple internet searches will populate hundreds of stunning wedding photos, colors and images for inspiration. Try websites devoted to wedding advice like The Knot. Or sign up for Pinterest to search for wedding examples by keywords and tags. Social media shareability has made it incredibly easy to draw creativity from events all over the world, so take advantage! Happy color hunting!