Find The Perfect Color Scheme For Your Wedding With The Help Of Online Tools: Part 1

This is the first installment of a two-post series on using online tools to help discover your ideal wedding color scheme. Second installment to be posted tomorrow.

A Word on the “Perfect” Wedding Color Scheme

Narrowing down your wedding colors can be tricky. There’s a lot of pressure to pick the one absolutely perfect color scheme that will flow throughout your wedding and tie your location, personalities, and all the little details together. The fact is, there really isn’t one perfect answer: what there are, though, are choices–a lot of choices–a lot of potentially “perfect” color combinations, and this overload of possibility is what I think causes a lot of couples to flounder.

Do Your Colors Behave Well Together?

Also, while you may have a basic idea for the main color in mind, what about any supporting ones? Most wedding color schemes contain anywhere from one to three colors; often, a supporting or accent color is used alongside your main (base) color. The thing is, some colors complement each other better than others. Some definitely clash. While the bottom line is going to be what you and your sweetheart each find appealing, some general guidelines or a sense of what works together really helps.

Your Colors as a Foundation

If you’re struggling with what colors to use, then most of your other wedding details will be put on hold. Just think about all the things in which your wedding colors are likely to play a major role: flowers and favors, for starters. Your cake. The stationery. Bridal party attire. Your table linens. Plus, you really should consider your colors when selecting a location, since some color schemes might clash with a given space.

Luckily, there are a couple of wedding tech tools up our sleeve that we can take advantage of to help visualize our choices. They can help answer a lot of the questions regarding what colors work well with each other, and hopefully squelch a good deal of our indecisiveness. I’ll introduce one of those tools in today’s post: palette generators.

Palette Generators

The basic concept here is that you upload a photo to an online service, which runs the image through some software wizardry and outputs a sample palette for you based on that photo. It might be a pic of your location, for example…maybe the interior of a grand ballroom. Or it might be a closeup shot of a special item or embellishment that you are basing your theme on. If you have such a photo or can take one, you might find the palette generators helpful.¬†These tools are primarily intended for graphics designers and their ilk, but they are a boon to the wedding planner as well.

Upload a photo and a color palette based it will be generated for you automatically.

Just upload a photo to Color Hunter and a color palette based on it will be generated for you automatically.

Color Hunter, available at colorhunter.com, is one such palette generator. It’s a simple matter to upload your photo and receive an instant palette. Click the intensity icon on the upper left to vary the intensity of the palette. You can also browse a number of sample palettes generated from flickr imagery.

More palettes generated from photos of interiors

More palettes generated from photos of interiors

You can also enter in search phrases, URLs of photos, or color codes into the search bar to pull up related photos (well, related according to the service’s search algorithm, anyway) from flickr, along with their associated palettes. Sometimes it helps get the creative juices flowing just by browsing some of these samples. I noticed that the search can be a bit slow for some queries, presumably because Color Hunter is generating palettes for the hundreds of results. If it drags on too long, just cancel and try another search tag. They have a list of common ones at the bottom of the main page. Also, be mindful that keyword search results aren’t always what you’d expect.

Page 3 of 640 search results for the keyword "purple"

Page 3 of 640 search results for the keyword "purple"

Steve DeGraeve's palette-generating tool can be used with any online image

Steve DeGraeve's tool can be used to generate representative palettes from any online image

App builder Steve DeGraeve developed a similar palette generator. The main difference is that you enter in the URL of an online photo rather than upload one.

So what do these tool get you? The palette generator is mainly a brainstorming device. When you go over the results from whatever image you run through the tool, try and ask yourself which color grabs you the most as a main color for your wedding…if any. Or maybe you already have a good sense of the main color and you’re trying to find a supporting color or two to go with it. Do the other colors provided in the generated palette work with your main color candidate? Is there one color in the group that’s totally off–but you like it there anyway? This may be a good example of a contrasting accent color, which we’ll cover in the next post.

Tomorrow I’ll introduce a very helpful tool for your color searching arsenal, color scheme designers, that allow you to take colors you came up with using the palette generators here–or anywhere else–and really massage and combine them to see what works together and what doesn’t.

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avatar About Jason

Enthusiast of traveling, writing, cinematography, all things tech, good coffee, and craft beer. Founder of Mediasoft Technologies, Inc. & WedShare.com. Author of "e-Plan Your Wedding". Follow me at @jason_melendez and check out my blog.

Comments

  1. I read somewhere recently about using Google image search to help you with your wedding colour scheme or theme. You could search for ‘wedding accessories’ and then use the colour palette at the side to find images of a particular colour.

    I thought it was really useful and works really well too!

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