Color Schemes for Your Wedding
Combining colors for your wedding dress and especially matching them to the groom's attire or the decoration can be a nightmare. With so many colors available, where do you start? Using the color wheel to choose "adjascent colors" or "opposite colors" won't deliver satisfactory results for most people.
Arriving at a set of colors which gel is a service which professional color consultants will provide you. This article gives you the basics on which they build. The cool thing about this systematic approach is that you once your color type has been determined, you have a whole palette of colors suiting you at your disposal. Many of those colors you previously never even considered using.
One basic way to characterise colors is the "warm" and "cold" color group. Reds are considered "warm" colors and blue "cold", although physicists and photographers will tell you the exact opposite. For them, objects are considered "colder" when red and "hotter" when blue due to the laws of physics. But let's stick to the first definition for this article.
Color consultants categorize further into Summer, Autumn, Winter and Spring palettes. Let's look at each of these categories. Note that the palettes shown below contain some color examples. In reality, there are infinitely more shades belonging to each palette.
are cool, similar to the winter palette, but more hazy, with some shades appearing tender and perhaps powdery.
are colors occuring in autumn, with a warm, earthy palette. Browns, dark greens and darkish reds dominate.
are bold and cold, with a wide range of white and dark shades.
are warm, strong, bright colors.
Color consultants use scarves with colors in these palettes to place on you to see which match your appearance to determine your color type. Once it's established, you're handed out a set of color cards or cloth samples of your color type, which you can then take along while shopping for clothes. Things are complicated a bit by the fact that some people belong to two color types.
Personally preferring a particular palette and it suiting you are not the same thing! So even if you might "like" the spring palette, yours might actually be a "summer". You need a mirror or someone to judge how those colors look on you.
When choosing wedding clothes, you can use the exact same procedure as when choosing normal clothes. Additionally, you'll need to coordinate your palette with the groom's. Conflicting color palettes, with the bride in cold colors and the groom in warm can be an eyesore. Watch out even for the whites. Plain white belongs to the cold palette but off-white (also called "eggshell" or "ivory white") belongs to the warm, so your wedding dress in off-white will clash with the groom's fully white shirt! If he's not allowed to see your dress before the wedding, you can give him cloth samples of your colours which he can use when selecting his clothes.
Another point to watch is the color brightness of your wedding dress. If it has a dominanting color, it draws a lot of attention to itself and away from your person. That's probably not what you want! You'll need to use a device to keep people mostly focused on your face/head instead of your dress. To achieve this, try using jewelry such as earrings or a necklace in the same tone of the appropriate size to draw attention to your face. A simpler way is using hair-flowers of a matching color.
With these tips, you should be on the road to avoiding the worst color clashes. Also ask the professionals at your dress store or take a best friend (who doesn't get jealous easily!) along on your dress shopping for a valuable second opinion.