Which comes first? The style for your wedding or the colors for your wedding? Based on our years of offering planning inspiration and tips for ceremonies and receptions, you can approach this either way! You may decide on your dream style first, then choose the color/s that will bring it to life. Or select the color/s you love, then zero in on the style that will be amazing in that palette.
Still confused or unsure? Then, read on and view selected examples from our own styled sets and inspiration boards to help you see the range of options open to you! It starts by getting to know the various wedding styles – what they are called and how they look.
WEDDING STYLES AND THEIR TYPICAL COLORS
“Vintage” “Rustic” “Boho” “Modern” Do the terms used to describe a ceremony and reception style seem vague, overlapping, or simply unclear to you? We hear you! So, to help you sort through them all and decide which style is actually for you, see these simple definitions – and the typical color palette that goes with each.
CLASSIC WEDDING STYLE
A classic wedding is a formal affair that includes a traditional ceremony held in church with the bride in a white, ballgown-style dress and the groom in a tuxedo, followed by a sit-down plated dinner reception with the tables set with fine china, silverware, and crystal.
Typical colors: Black + White + Silver
VINTAGE WEDDING STYLE
True vintage style is one that recaptures a bygone era. It could range from Victorian to Gatsby/Art deco to English garden to French court-inspired. So it may lean towards vintage-glam or vintage-romantic, among other variations.
The bridal party attire usually incorporates antique lace, a fascinator in place of a wedding veil, and a formal suit and vest for the groom. The reception table settings also feature antique serve ware and silverware, vintage china, and lace linens.
Color option: Gold / Metallics
Color option: Lavender
RUSTIC WEDDING STYLE
This is a highly popular style that is basically woodsy and outdoorsy – making use of natural materials found in forests, farms, vineyards and fields, as well as DIY elements often made by the couple and their families and friends. The general feel, then, is more intimate, warm, and homey. It can be modified to take on various looks, in combinations such as rustic-boho, rustic-natural, and rustic-country, and is often influenced by the season of the wedding.
Color option: Cranberry + Golden Yellow
Color option 1: Red + Brown + White
Color option 2: Greens + Brown
Color option: Berries + Blue
MODERN WEDDING STYLE
The modern style intentionally veers away from the traditional by using bolder, more dramatic color combinations, and edgier decor elements made of metal, glass, stone and marble. The bride tends to choose more stylized sheath dresses with minimal embellishments, or else avant-garde designs. The table settings also tend to be trendy and floral touches quite spare.
Color option: Black + Copper
ROMANTIC WEDDING STYLE
The romantic style tends to be sweet and feminine, in a palette of muted colors with a hint of sparkle. The bridal gown is soft and flowing, and may feature lace and dainty appliques. The floral decor from bouquets to table centerpieces usually feature gorgeous roses and peonies – reminiscent of a lush English garden.
Color option: Blush Pink + Ivory + Gold
GLAM WEDDING STYLE
This style often takes its inspiration from royalty or Old Hollywood, incorporating luxe fabrics like silk and satin in rich jewel tones with glitzy beadwork and dazzling accessories. The groom and his gents are dapper in tuxes, while the ladies in the bridal party are in svelte gowns. At the reception, the tablescapes are a-glitter with metallics and crystal often on a sequined table cloth.
Color option: Purple + Gold
Color option: Rose gold
RETRO WEDDING STYLE
Another highly popular wedding style, retro capitalizes on a sense of nostalgia usually for the 1950s to 1980s (depending on which era the couple identifies with). The decor elements for this style are generally available in antique stores, thrift shops or yard sales – or right at home. Inspiration may range from the diner/soda fountain era, to the “op art” phase, to the disco invasion.
Color option: Powder Blue
PLAYFUL / WHIMSICAL WEDDING STYLE
This is the style for a wedding with a lighthearted, youthful appeal. The bride may choose a tea-length dress and a bright, colorful bouquet, while the groom may don a less formal suit. Decorations at the ceremony may include paper pinwheels in place of flowers, while pennant bunting may dress up the reception. Fun games are prepared for the guests to play, and wedding favors with a touch of humor or nostalgia are given as they leave.
Color option 1: Fuchsia + Yellow
Color option 2: Vintage Red + Aqua
VIBRANT WEDDING STYLE
This is similar to the playful/whimsical style, but features bolder, more striking colors – think neon and rainbow! The decorations at both the ceremony and reception tend to be modern, likely geometric – with a festive, energetic feel. Bridesmaids’ dresses and table settings are also multi-colored; as are the wedding cake, food items, drinks, and favors.
Color option: Radiant orchid
Color option: Neon