Ask the Experts: How to Create a Unified Wedding Look

by Marta
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Ask the Experts is your chance to get your wedding questions answered by a panel of wedding professionals.

If you need wedding advice write asktheexperts@onewed.com

Dear Experts,
It’s always looks a little silly to me when the bridesmaids dresses match the tablecloths, which match the centerpieces, which match the groomsmen’s ties, etc. So, I was thinking I just wouldn’t have “wedding colors.” But, whenever I talk about this with my mom and sisters they insist that if I don’t have “colors” everything will look hodge-podge. What are some ideas for making the wedding look unified and together, without making everything “matchy-match.”

Signed,
Miss-Matched

From Jeff of Blackbird Images
We photographed a 500-guest wedding at the Congressional Country Club last fall. $100k budget, which typically translates to “matchy-match.” The bride chose color “themes” instead: Bridesmaids dresses with groomsmen’s ties; tablecloths with table settings and lighting; etc. Everything worked as component pieces but didn’t have to match in totality. (She even let her bridesmaids choose different dresses, as long as they were the same color and basic style… since no one style fits everyone.) If you think it’s silly to over-match, don’t! Just give it a little thought… and then move on to making the day yours. You – and your guests – will remember how much fun they it was.. not whether everything was perfectly color-coordinated.

Thea of Rose of Sharon:
A color theme does help unify the event. But that doesn't mean everything has to match exactly. You can pick one or two main colors and a couple of accent colors. The accents can be variations of the main colors or something that compliments the main colors. Another way to have a color theme without being too one-dimensional is to have a seasonal color theme. For example, you might pick 'muted fall tones' giving your burgundy, burnt orange, brown, and golden yellow. Anything that falls within these colors can be used. Or you might go for 'winter whites' and use white, cream, champagne, ivory, an a very pale pink. Color isn't the only way to unify an event, however. You can also pick a theme, such as an wildflowers or fall.

Arti of Zoya Couture:
I couldn't agree more. I think you have the right idea on not trying to go overboard on matching. However, I don't recommend doing away with wedding colors altogether - otherwise you may, accidentally, end up with all of the colors in the rainbow! A very vibrant wedding, but probably not what you have in mind. Instead of 2-3, pick 4-6 colors to maintain flexibility. Start with what you know you must have, and then try adding darker or lighter shades of some of those colors that would still give the palette a sense of harmony.

About our experts:
Arti Anand works with ZOYA Couture, a boutique design and print studio in Washington, D.C. that creates wedding invitations and marketing collateral. The company incorporates work of numerous in-house and freelance designers, offering clients fresh new designs, layouts, and materials.

Thea Daniel, owner of Rose of Sharon Event Florist in Fayeteville, Arkansas, has been designing floral arrangements for events for 15 years.

Jeff Haden is President of BlackBird Images, wedding photographers based in Harrisonburg, VA. Not only is he a well-respected and talented photographer, but has also gained recognition as a ghostwriter.