The coming year will be ablaze with vibrant hues that ensure no wedding is ho-hum. From royal purple to ruby red, 2013's couples can embrace a color palette that's full of fantasy and glamour. Don't forget to incorporate your wedding colors into your fashion choices, your room décor, and even your catering menu for a fully-immersive experience.
Dark, dramatic red will take to the aisles as bold brides embrace vermillion wedding dresses. Red is a color of good fortune in many Eastern cultures and a traditional color for wedding dresses around the world. If you're not ready to drape yourself with garnet from head to toe, however, you can use the color sparingly by accenting the hem and lacings of your wedding gown.
Look for brilliant red accents in hair accessories, nail polish, and lipstick that can't be missed. Decorate your tiara, earrings, and bridesmaids' jewelry with gemstones like rubies and garnets, or go for a vintage look with aged red button jewelry. You can also accent your edible offerings by garnishing drinks with cherries and serving red velvet cake or cupcakes. Don't forget the red wine!
Red roses are classics, but nature has other beautiful options for scarlet flower designs. For winter weddings, create a seasonal feel with striking poinsettias and bunches of holly. For warm weather weddings, look for tropical red blooms like hibiscus flowers, anthurium (which are so dramatic and shiny, they could almost pass for a sculpture), and Alpinia purpurata (red ginger), the spectacular ruffles of which will match your wedding dress.
When you go for a red color scheme, you're evoking a feeling of old-world glamour. Enhance this by hiring a live jazz band and holding your reception in a venue with some historic character. If you can find an old, Art Deco theater with original décor, you're in luck.
Mint will be more than a color in the coming year. Pair this fresh shade of light green with minty flavors and aromas for a refreshing take on wedding pastels. Mint green is a flattering shade that goes with nearly every skin tone and hair color, making it a natural choice for your bridesmaids' dresses. It also goes well with a pastel color palette for beach and garden weddings. Look for lightweight fabrics and tea-length dresses to help your mint wedding achieve its most refreshing tone.
Winter weddings can also benefit from a splash of mint. Pair the light color with white and silver for a "winter wonderland" effect. Decorate tables with mint-colored (and scented!) candles and glass ornaments to catch the light. Serve hot coffee and chocolate with green mint stirring sticks to keep your guests cozy.
This bright, lively color is the perfect choice for an autumn wedding. Not only can you use accents of pumpkin color in your wedding gown and bridesmaids' dresses, but you can use actual pumpkins in table centerpieces and room decorations. Don't forget mini pumpkins as place-card holders. Pumpkins can also be featured in delicious catering offerings. Look for creamy pumpkin soup topped with roasted pumpkin seeds, or mini pumpkin pie tarts as hors d'oeuvres. Pumpkin spice also serves as a delicious flavoring for ice creams, dessert coffee, and even beer.
If you're planning a warm weather wedding, don’t rule out pumpkin as a color. The sunny color is also the hue of sunflowers, day lilies, and many varieties of roses. Even if pumpkins themselves aren’t in season, the color can still serve as an inspiration for a brilliant garden wedding.
Evoking opulence and royalty, deep plum is a color that will lend richness and depth to your wedding color palette. Pair it with light cream for a striking contrast or use a slightly lighter shade of purple to bring out a subtle range of hues. Look for venues with deep, rich tones such as black cherry wood or carved stone accents. Dark colors pair well with evening receptions and candlelight. Add a little more splendor by using peacock feathers as hair accessories or by incorporating them into your flower arrangements.
Extend the color into your catering menu. Serve roasted eggplant with dinner, or use plums to top meat dishes. Blackberries serve as a natural and delicious dye for deep purple cocktails and sorbets. You can even use whole plums floating in decorative glass vases as table centerpieces. Look for romantic flowers that occur naturally in shades of purple, such as orchids, violets, lilacs, and wisteria.
In a sea of deep, rich tones, brides looking for a delicate color scheme can still have their way. Blushing pink is the perfect compromise color for a wedding dress that isn't too dark, but isn't plain white, either. Add light pink accents with lace and trim, and don't forget to match the same tone in your wedding-day makeup.
To bring out this hue in your wedding décor, look for small roses. Gathered together with ribbon, tiny pink roses don't need to be accompanied by any other flowers to make a big impact. Perfect for flower arrangements or a wedding bouquet, pale pink mini-roses are sturdy enough to last the whole day.
Carry the theme into your menu with delicate, sparkling drinks. Pink lemonade makes a delightful sipping drink on its own, or it can be paired with clear liquors for a refreshing cocktail. Don’t forget the pink champagne! Raspberries make the perfect drink garnishes. Serve trays of sweet finger-foods like strawberries, cream, and ladyfingers to give your guests the perfect pink experience.
Choosing Your Colors
The coming year offers something for everyone. If you're stumped by the wide selection, pick three or four of your favorite color combinations and try them out. You can throw a pre-wedding party and decorate your house with the colors you're considering. You can go shopping and try on different outfits in different color combinations until you find the perfect one. You can even buy a big box of crayons and a large sheet of paper, and keep scribbling until you see something that makes you go, "Wow!" Keep experimenting, and you'll find what feels right.