When I married Mr Smiles our Spring wedding was full of sunshine and optimism.
When we were deciding which season of the year to get married in I knew I wanted a Spring Wedding. Spring is my favourite season. I am drawn to fresh Spring colours which can’t but help make you feel cheerful after the drab monochrome of Winter. Spring is seen as a fresh start for a New Year just as our marriage was the start of our New Life together.
Choosing a Wedding Colour Scheme
I love colour. I love mixing paints and experimenting with the different colours and tones they produce. I like experimenting with which colours work well together both in a painting and in my job as a Dispensing Optician when advising on frame choice. In my previous Blog Post on `My Paint Box’ I shared how I systematically record how my paints work together when mixed.
My advice to any Bride planning their wedding is to start thinking about which colours suit you and which colours you are attracted to.
I invested in having my `colours done’ by House of Colour many years ago and found I am a `Peaches and Cream’ Spring or a Light Spring. This knowledge was invaluable when planning my wedding. The book `Be a Beautiful Bride’ published by Hamlyn for Colour Me Beautiful is very useful. As I am warm in colouring I knew that ivory, cream or golden shades suit me. The first thing I did was choose my dress. I wanted a dress which was pretty, feminine and romantic, preferably made of lace. I knew the dress I chose was the one for me as soon as I saw it. Pure White doesn’t enhance my warm colouring so I chose a champagne coloured taffeta gown by Essense of Australia.
My dress was described as an elegant slim-line tulle and crushed taffeta gown. It was Empire Line in shape as this suits my pear shape and high waist. The Empire Line was highlighted with a band of taffeta and the tulle was appliqued with lace and beaded with Swarovski crystals. Of course I thought my dress was absolutely beautiful! I accesorised my dress with cream shoes by Rainbow Club with little diamante detail, a delicate gold and crystal bracelet and a fabulous golden sparkly handbag. The best bit was my golden diamante tiara. I loved it and paraded around the house when I came back from the shop!
Having chosen your dress you can then decide on a colour theme. We had chosen to get married in the Baytree Hotel in Burford, a beautiful old Inn with lovely gardens. The moment we visited the Baytree we knew this was the venue for us. It is a beautiful place with a sense of history, but has an air of cosy relaxation. We chose to have our ceremony in the conservatory which is very light and airy and has views of the garden.
I am as passionate about wedding flowers as I am about colour. I knew that I wanted my flowers to be romantic, natural, pretty country garden flowers. As a child I dreamt of creamy yellow primroses in a posy as a bouquet. My uncle picked my mum a posy of primroses from the local Woods when she was born. In reality primroses are too small for a bouquet. However the idea of something picked straight out of the garden arranged in an informal way has stayed with me. I am also passionate about roses as you will see from the pictures on my website. I now have 12 different varieties of rose in our garden at the last count and I know them all by name! I am particularly fond of big, old fashioned roses. I’m not keen on supermarket roses which never open out. Yellow and pink are my favourite colours where flowers are concerned. I decided against pink flowers and pink as a colour scheme. Both myself, my bridesmaid and my mum-in-law can flush a nice shade of rosy pink and I thought it was best not to draw attention to our rosy cheeks! Yellow seems to me to be bright, cheerful and optimistic. This is how I wanted my wedding to be. I therefore chose to have yellow roses in my bouquet. The colours that suit me best are peaches and cream so I opted for a bouquet of old fashioned roses in creams, yellow gold and soft peach. I included the variety of Narcissi ` Sir Winston Churchill‘ which are creamy-white with centres of peach.
My bouquet was tied with lace picking up on the lace in my dress. When I was deciding on which flowers I would like in my bouquet I found the magazine `Wedding Flowers’ the best magazine on the market. It is full of good advice and more importantly there are good quality large photographs of example bouquets in every colour scheme imaginable. Once I had made some choices about how I wanted my bouquet to look I painted an imaginary watercolour which I used on our wedding stationary.
My painting portrayed an informal hand-tied bouquet in my colour scheme of peaches and cream with a splash of cheery golden yellow. I included jasmine as I intended to have jasmine hung in garlands in the conservatory at the Baytree. I carried this design through on our invitations, Order of Service, Table Plan and Bridal Favours.
For the table decorations I chose to have informal jugs of flowers incorporating roses from my bouquet but also less structured foliage and flowers giving the impression that they had just been picked out of the garden. The jugs and ceremony flowers included foliage of yellow forsythia and viburnum opulus. The viburnum was a lovely fresh lime green colour. I loved it so much I hunted it down to grow in our garden. The only nursery I could find that stocked it is Sarah Raven.
I included home-made crab apple jelly pots on the tables as bridal favours. Crab apple jelly is a beautiful peach colour. I topped the pots with lace and tags with my own design to match the theme. I also managed to find peach tea lights which co-ordinated beautifully. I made confetti cones from paper with textured paper containing dried flowers and filled the cones with freeze-dried rose petals.
The vast majority of my wedding photographs here were taken by Steve Hicks of Squib Photography. He is a fabulous wedding photographer with a delightful manner and I would highly recommend him.
The next stage in deciding on a colour scheme was to make a decision about outfits for my bridesmaid and the men, including the groom! I found my colour knowledge as an artist was an invaluable. It does help to have a little colour knowledge and this colour wheel is helpful:-
I found this Colour Wheel on a Blog called Budget Brides Guide and the article on colour schemes was really useful:-
There are basically 3 types of wedding colour combinations to choose from:-
Monotone. With this colour scheme you pick one colour and stick to it. You can use many different shades of the same colour. For example my sister-in-law wanted her colour scheme to be pink and pink it was!
She had a variety of pinks in her bouquet including soft pink Sweet Avalanche roses and darker pink bombastic spray roses. I gave her the flowers as a wedding gift and Fabulous Flowers of Abingdon did her proud.Her shoes were vibrant pink and the groom had a tie and shirt in shades of pink.
I decided to be different and wore a dress with red flowers!
Analogous Colours. This colour scheme combines 2 colours next to each other on the color wheel. For example: red and orange, blue and green, violet and red, etc. These make really good colour combinations as they are pleasing to the eyes. You can combine shades of 2 or 3 colours next to each other on the colour wheel. When I was deciding on my colour scheme I was intending to use `Peaches and Cream’ as my colour scheme with accents of golden yellow. You can see on the Colour Wheel that these colours all lie next to each other and are therefore analogous colours. I was therefore considering putting my bridesmaid in a brushed gold or yellow dress. She refused! If I’d had my way she may have been in cheery sunflower yellow! However my bridesmaid doesn’t suit yellow. My bridesmaid has lovely bright blue eyes and although light colours suit her like me, she doesn’t have my Spring colouring. She is a light, Summer. Many of the light pastel colours that suit me work well on her, however blues work better on her then any colour biased towards yellow. A person with Summer colouring does not look good in yellow, gold, orange or peach. The only possible yellow may have been a pale primrose yellow which she can wear, but wouldn’t have been keen on wearing! This can be a problem if your bridal party includes several people with a bias towards particular colours. In the Colour Me Beautiful Book `Be a Beautiful Bride’ there is a list of several colours which suit everyone and this lists includes purple, turquoise, emerald and true red.
Complementary Colours. These are colours that are opposite to each other on the color wheel. These colors when used together stand out and create contrasts. For example orange and blue, yellow and violet, red and green. Suddenly my knowledge of colour and the colour wheel was invaluable. If you find peach on the colour wheel and look for the complentary colour on the opposite side you get a beautiful teal blue/green. Sorted! I found a beautiful dress by Dessy in a suitable colour called `Capri’. It was a fabulous colour for my bridesmaid and went with my colour scheme as a cheery complementary colour. I am not quite sure what the groom and the grooms men thought about wearing such bright coloured cravats, but I loved it! I thought the colour was bright, cheery and optimistic. I did make a joke about the colour in my speech!
I’d love to know what you think about my wedding colour scheme!