Are you struggling to pin down the best wedding color scheme for your big day? If so, it may help to know the meanings behind the colors you’re considering for your wedding.
From deep jewel tones that reflect opulence and nobility to softer colors that evoke a sense of whimsy and romance, here are the most common wedding colors and their hidden meanings:
Red – Passion, Love, Drama, Energy, Dominance
Meaning: Red has different meanings in various countries. In America, it can symbolize love, anger and courage while in China, it means luck and prosperity.
Research shows that red can rev up desire, increase your heart rate and make you more excited. You can choose to dial up the romance by picking a bold and vibrant red color scheme or tone it down with a beautiful burgundy or crimson.
Popular Wedding Color Combinations: Cherry Red + Black, Cardinal Red + Grey, Burgundy + Gold, Crimson + Light Brown.
How to Style: Red is a bold color that typically looks best as an accent. For the main colors, choose a sophisticated dark grey or play up the drama with black and gold.
Pink – Soft, Sweet, Feminine, Romance
Meaning: Pink is often associated with femininity and young women. However, this attitude is a rather modern concept.
In fact, pink was once associated with masculinity because it was related to red, a color that signifies dominance and passion. It wasn’t until the 20th century that people decided to make pink a more suitable color for girls.
Regardless of gender roles, pink now signifies young love, sensitivity and vulnerability. Its various shades (fuchsia, rose, coral, magenta) are some of the most common colors used in weddings today.
Popular Wedding Color Combinations: Coral + Mint, Dusty Pink + Ivory, Carnation + Magenta, Light Pink + Navy Blue, Light Pink + Grey.
How to Style: Blush and blue weddings are super trendy right now and will make your entire bridal party look amazing. Outfit the grooms in navy suits with pink accents and opt for bridesmaid dresses in romantic dusty rose to make your wedding photos pop.
Blue – Tranquil, Balance, Serenity, Sadness
Meaning: Blue is known for being a calming color. In fact, research shows that the color blue puts us in a meditative state because it reminds us of water, which contributes to our sense of well-being.
Blue is also the color of trust, which is why many businesses use blue in their corporate logos. The “something blue” part of the wedding tradition stems from the belief that blue represented love, fidelity and trust.
Popular Wedding Color Combinations: Navy + Cranberry, Pale Blue + Ivory, Light Blue + Yellow, Cerulean + Sage.
How to Style: From a stunning pair of blue pumps to a simple cobalt blue sash, there are plenty of ways to carry on the “something blue” tradition. If you want blue to be part of your wedding color scheme, you have endless options as well.
Make guests feel like they’re in a true winter wonderland by pairing light blue with silver and having fun with your wedding treat table. From snowflake-themed wedding pops to an elegant pale blue cake dripping in gold, this color combo provides endless opportunities for cold-weather brides.
Purple – Royalty, Luxury, Power, Mystery
Meaning: Purple is associated with wealth and opulence. Once worn exclusively by the nobility, purple was often used to convey one’s status in society, so you can make your ladies look like royalty in purple bridesmaid dresses.
Although darker shades of purple still signify luxury and power, lighter shades of purple can provoke a sense of elegance, whimsy and magic. Its many associations make it one of the more popular wedding color choices for modern brides.
Popular Wedding Color Combinations: Lilac + Sage, Plum + Gold, Deep Purple + Light Grey, Lavender + Yellow, Mulberry + Orchid + Yellow.
How to Style: With the right wedding color scheme, you can use purple any time of the year. Pair darker hues with gold for a glamorous fall or winter wedding, or pair a lighter shade of purple with ivory or sage for a whimsical, romantic ambiance.
Purple flowers are absolutely stunning and pop against white backgrounds. Take advantage of these beautiful blooms by using them not only as bouquets but also as centerpieces for your tables.
Orange – Excitement, Youth, Warmth
Meaning: Orange is a color that signifies youth, vitality and generosity. If you’re an older couple looking to add some vibrancy and energy to your wedding, an orange-based color palette is worth considering.
Popular Wedding Color Combinations: Tangerine + Yellow, Orange + Cranberry + Yellow, Apricot + Sage, Orange + Teal + Gold.
How to Style: Orange is a difficult color to pull off in the winter. However, it’s the perfect hue for spring, summer and fall weddings.
If you’re going for a bohemian vibe, opt for a color palette of burnt orange, dusty pink and brown. These lovely hues come together in an elegant fashion that both the bride and the groom will love. This combo is also fun for mixing and matching orange bridesmaid dresses in various hues.
Yellow – Happiness, Positivity, Curiosity, Imagination
Meaning: Similar to orange, yellow evokes energy and happiness. It also signifies curiosity and imagination, making it perfect for creative couples who enjoy learning and exploring.
Popular Wedding Color Combinations: Canary Yellow + Light Blue, Amber + Marigold + Navy, Yellow + Coral, Emerald + Cream + Gold, Yellow + Lilac, Yellow + Mint + Ivory.
How to Style: Although yellow is primarily associated with summer weddings, various shades can be adopted for fall and winter. Golden hues bring warmth to fall and winter affairs while lighter shades such as canary can brighten up summer and spring weddings.
Green – Health, Growth, Bounty
Meaning: Green is most commonly associated with wealth and money. However, it’s also the color of nature and represents life, growth and the environment.
Although there are some negative connotations associated with the color green, like envy and jealousy, it’s often used by brides to signify their love of nature and the outdoors. Brides who want green to signify wealth should choose darker rich shades of green while brides who want to evoke a natural sense of wonder should opt for bright green hues. Dress your bridesmaids in to create a beautiful color contrast for your wedding photos!
Popular Wedding Color Combinations: Emerald + Gold, Lime Green + Navy + Cobalt, Sage Green + Light Pink, Mint + Light Blue + Ivory, Olive + Ivory, Sage + Dusty Pink + Navy.
How to Style: If you’re going for the nature vibe, take advantage of natural foliage in your wedding décor. Drape wedding garland down long tables and use hanging plants above the lights for a venue decked out in gorgeous greenery.
Of course, not every couple is going to choose a color based on its hidden meaning alone. There are so many other factors to consider, including the season, time of day and your location.
Still, it’s helpful to know what each color represents. By knowing the secret meaning behind each one, you can choose a wedding color scheme that perfectly reflects you and your betrothed.