Colors for Winter Weddings

Crystal Schwanke
Red warms up the season.

Winter wedding colors can go with the theme of the season by incorporating icy tones, jewel tones, or holiday colors. They can be used as contrast against a sometimes bleak and colorless time of year or to play up a winter wonderland theme. They are generally cool in tone, though warm-toned accent colors can add interest to the overall appearance of the ceremony or the reception hall.

Ice and Snow

You can play up winter's icy beauty by choosing to use delicate baby blue, shades of gray and silver, lilac, periwinkle, navy blue, and white. Want a winter wonderland theme? This is the color palette for you.

You can use navy blue or periwinkle as the trim on your dress, for example, and then have your bridesmaids wear that color. Add silver and white into the decorations and consider giving the bridesmaids pearl or silver jewelry to wear in the wedding.

To come up with your ideal mix of colors for this type of color scheme, visualize a day at sea during the winter or your ideal day in the snow. The colors that come to mind will work harmoniously together to create the setting for a perfect winter wedding.

Neutrals for Winter Wedding Colors

Neutrals work well for formal winter weddings, too. You can use black and white or black and champagne for everything from the wedding party's attire to the reception hall. Black and white or black and champagne work beautifully for nighttime weddings because of the opulence they emit when paired together. Another option? Pale gold or taupe-with white or black.

Combating the Cold with Fire

180 Add red accents to a white color palette.

One popular color for winter weddings is red. That includes all shades of red, from apple to burgundy. The key to making red work as a winter color more so than a fall color is to make sure you choose blue-based reds, not orange or yellow-based reds. Red bridesmaid dresses and seasonal red flowers make beautiful complements to winter settings and blend very well with holiday decorations that are often found in churches before and after Christmas.

Use red as the trim on your dress, pops of color in a white or icy-toned bouquet, or to make up your whole bouquet. You can also use red for your bridesmaids' dresses, tablecloths, or as an accent color on your cake. It's an ideal, easy way to warm up the potentially dreary season.

Rich Hues for Contrast

Some of the colors that are great for fall weddings also carry over into the winter months, creating a rich contrast between the dreary gray sky and deep, velvety colors. Consider rich colors like burgundy, plum, chocolate, forest green, emerald, and dark teal.

A jewel-toned palette is exceptionally beautiful against a gray sky, naked branches (if you have pictures taken outside), and the dim light of a winter evening. If your dress is going to be off-white or champagne rather than pure white, your bridesmaids will look especially lovely standing beside you in a deep chocolate brown color. Choose teal as an accent color for more depth.

Sample Color Schemes

Want some more specific color schemes to use in your quest for the perfect winter wedding colors? Consult the color wheel. In your wedding color scheme, you can use complementary colors, split complementary colors, related colors, or even monochromatic colors for a theme you'll love. Here are a few suggestions to get you started:

An icy rose for winter.
  • Royal purple and rich green with gold or silver accents
  • Blue, teal, and blue violet with white accents
  • Navy blue, sky blue, ice blue, and silver
  • Apple red and emerald green with silver or white accents

You can use anything from the palest, most delicate baby blue to the richest chocolate brown you can find. The best thing to keep in mind when choosing your winter wedding colors is to stay on the cool side of the color spectrum.

Try and make sure cool tones flatter your bridesmaids as much as possible. You can still use the same color palette you'd hoped for, but you might want to tweak it a bit, adding depth to a dress color or switching up where you use each color. For example, if you want to use silver, but not many of your bridesmaids can pull off the color well, consider using it in the reception hall while opting for a different color for the bridal party.

One word of caution: check with the venue to find out what kinds of decorations will be present at the time of your wedding. Since it will be the holiday season, there's a good chance there will be something there. While white lights can add a hint of magic to your ceremony and reception, poinsettias may clash with the red color you hope to use in your wedding. Know what you're working with before you jump too far into the planning.

Pick Your Perfect Palette

Choosing winter wedding colors can be a challenge, but the monochrome nature of the season lends itself to any number of colorful palettes for winter weddings. In the end, choose the colors that bring you the most joy, and you can't go wrong.

Colors for Winter Weddings