How to choose your wedding colors for a non-traditional wedding

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DIY Rustic Gay Filipino Fairy Tale Wedding 1 alternative wedding ideas from Offbeat Wed (formerly Offbeat Bride)
Can't choose one color? Choose them all! From this Filipino fairy-tale wedding, Photography by New Road Productions

When you tell anyone or their mother that you're planning a wedding, one of the first questions is, “What's your wedding color scheme?” Choosing wedding colors is one of the first steps in establishing the vibe you want your guests to have. Wedding colors can set the mood, evoke emotions, and leave a lasting impression on guests. Blanking on wedding color ideas or deciding between varying wedding color schemes? Let's talk all things color, from selecting the best color palette to the meaning behind certain wedding colors and even seasonal trends to get your creative juices flowing.

How to select the right wedding color palette

Choosing the perfect wedding color scheme can seem overwhelming! Here are a few tips to help narrow it down:

Reflect on your style

Consider your personal style, preferences, and the overall atmosphere you envision for your wedding. Are you drawn to vibrant and bold colors, or do you prefer soft and muted tones? Are you trying to evoke party vibes? Or perhaps you want to feel like you stepped into a classy, candlelit speakeasy?

Gather inspiration

Explore various sources of inspiration, such as magazines, social media platforms, wedding blogs (ahem!) and even nature. Collect images and ideas that resonate with you and create a mood board to visualize your vision. Any time you're out and about and you see a wedding color scheme or wedding color ideas that speak to your soul, snap a pic and save it in a dedicated folder on your phone.

Consider the venue

Take into account the colors and ambiance of your chosen venue. It might help narrow down your wedding color ideas if you consider wedding color schemes that complement the space and enhances its existing charm. Bonus: It could also help your budget if you choose wedding colors within the venue's theme!

Classy Wedding Bar Light Sky Photography21 alternative wedding ideas from Offbeat Wed (formerly Offbeat Bride)
This couple leaned into their bar wedding by using neutral colors and pre-existing decor. Photography by Light Sky Photography

Harmonize with the season

While you can choose any color palette regardless of the season, drawing inspiration from the time of year can create a cohesive and visually stunning wedding. Consider seasonal blooms, weather, and overall atmosphere when making your color choices.

Experiment with combinations

Play with different color combinations to find the perfect harmony. Consider using a dominant color, one or two supporting hues, and a complementary accent color to add visual interest and depth.

A cornflower blue and lemon yellow Philippines wedding with Moroccan influences
A cornflower blue and lemon yellow Philippines wedding with Moroccan influences. Photos by Proudrad

Seasonal wedding trends

Staying up-to-date with seasonal wedding color trends can help you infuse your celebration with a fresh and fashionable touch. Here are some inspiring ideas for each season:

Winter wedding colors

Go for an elegant and sophisticated winter wedding by incorporating deep, moody colors like navy blue, emerald green, or burgundy. Add touches of silver and white for a wintry sparkle.

Spring wedding colors

Embrace the freshness of spring with pastel color palettes like soft pinks, lilacs, and mint greens. Add pops of vibrant colors like coral or sunny yellow for an invigorating touch to a spring wedding!

Autumn wedding colors

Embrace the warm and earthy tones of fall. Rich jewel tones like burgundy, deep purples, and burnt oranges paired with metallic accents like gold or copper create a cozy and romantic ambiance.

Summer wedding colors

Opt for bright and bold colors that reflect the energy of summer. Citrus shades, tropical hues, or combinations of vibrant blues and sunny yellows can create a festive and lively atmosphere.

You can also say “screw it” to seasonal color trends

We've seen lots of wedding choose colors that aren't often associated with the season they're in…and it looks bad-ass.

Here's a dark wedding color scheme for a spring wedding

Ink, roses, & tequila shots at this goth meets spring wedding at Lafitte Street Market
Pastel florals? For spring? Not at this dark and romantic spring wedding! Photos by Aaryn Storms Photography

Skip the reds and greens and go for browns and neutrals in a winter wedding

Leather, cigars, & Samoyeds at this burly bearded couple's winter in Maine wedding inspiration
Leather, cigars, & Samoyeds at this burly bearded couple’s winter in Maine wedding inspiration. Photos by Katelyn Mallett Photography

Imagine greys, reds, and blacks for a hot summer desert wedding

This glam goth Las Vegas wedding brings the moodiness and the heat.

What do wedding colors mean?

Wedding colors are more than just a visual element! Colors can carry symbolic meanings and reflect the marriers styles and personalities. Alternatively, you can choose whatever colors you like regardless of what they represent because, well, you just like them. But if the significance might help influence your selection of wedding color ideas, let's dive in.

Dark wedding color schemes

A dark wedding color palette adds an element of mystery and intrigue to a wedding. Dark colors, such as black, deep purples, or rich burgundies, can create an intimate and moody atmosphere. The enigmatic nature of the colors can create an alluring environment that encourages guests to engage with the romantic atmosphere. Although some folks traditionally associate dark colors with Halloween or macabre-inspired weddings, we've seen this color palette used for fantasy-inspired weddings and autumn weddings, too.

Blue hair, brocade, & anatomical hearts at this Ireland goth wedding inspiration
This goth wedding inspiration used an intimate cocktail bar as its muse. Photography by Elisha Clarke Photography

Blue wedding color schemes

Blue is often associated with calmness, tranquility, and serenity. It has been known to psychologically create a soothing effect on the mind and evoke a sense of peace. In the context of romance, blue represents trust, loyalty, and stability. It symbolizes the depth of emotions and the unwavering commitment between partners. Incorporating blue into a wedding color palette can evoke a sense of harmony, reliability, and a strong bond within a romantic relationship. We've seen blue wedding colors associated with many outdoor weddings, such as beach weddings and mountain weddings. Not to mention, a blue wedding color scheme could count as your “something blue” if you're into those traditions!

Red wedding color schemes

Red is a passionate and intense color that symbolizes love, desire, and energy. You can't look at red and not relate it to romance and sensuality. Incorporating red into a wedding color scheme can evoke a sense of excitement and drama. We see red wedding colors incorporated into many autumn weddings (like Halloween weddings), but we've also seen it pop up in a lot of moody winter weddings as well!

Neutral wedding color schemes

Neutrals, such as ivory, beige, and taupe, represent simplicity, elegance, and timelessness. They provide a versatile backdrop for any style and allow other elements to shine. The latest wedding trends seem to be incorporating neutral wedding colors into floral decor by using pampas grass, wheat, or other dried florals.

Green wedding color schemes

Green is the color of nature, symbolizing growth and renewal, the perfect symbolism for beginning a new chapter! Incorporating green wedding colors can create a refreshing and vibrant atmosphere, reflecting the couple's aspirations for a blossoming and enduring romance. Green is often a popular wedding color scheme for nature-inspired or outdoor weddings.

shades of green wedding invitation from minted alternative wedding ideas from Offbeat Wed (formerly Offbeat Bride)
This green-forward wedding invitation would be perfect for a botanical-themed wedding!

Ready to paint the town, er, wedding, whatever color you want?!

Choosing wedding colors should be a fun part of the wedding planning process. Your wedding color scheme is an opportunity to reflect your unique style and set the tone for your celebration. At the end of the day, there are no rules when it comes to choosing the right wedding color! Heck, you could even throw color symbolism or seasonal trends out the window and have the technicolor wedding of your dreams. The only rule of thumb we stand by is to choose wedding colors that make you say “Wow, that wedding was totally us.”

Still in the beginning stages of planning your wedding? We've put together this list to help you get started.

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