When fall wedding season comes around, it's hard not to think about all the rich colors and other benefits that come along with it. From crisp weather, lovely foliage, and options to incorporate seasonal flavors, it’s no wonder that fall weddings are fast becoming the most popular time to get married. But the colors that come with the changing of the season make it that much better, making way for the perfect décor palette.
When it comes to choosing your fall wedding colors, it's important to remember, it's not just the colors that you see in nature (fiery reds, yellows, and oranges). Fall weddings can also incorporate beautiful jewel tones and deep, dramatic hues, along with stunning neutrals and earth tones, and there are so many ways to combine shades from each of these categories.
To get the planning started, we consulter with experts Annie Armstrong and Michelle Norwood to put together our favorite seasonal colors to consider for your wedding, along with suggestions on what to pair them with and tips for sneaking each shade into your décor in unexpected ways.
Meet the Expert
Read on for 20 fall wedding colors to put together your gorgeous palette.
Making a statement with your color palette is so fun. But when you're using a bold choice, it's important to incorporate it in a way that makes the most sense. According to Armstrong, reinforcing the palette with a colored candle is a great way to tie in unexpected colors. "That way it's very intentional and it doesn't feel like an afterthought," she says. Pair marigold with neutral tones, or even add in a splash of green.
Black isn't just reserved for tuxes. Add it to your tables with candlesticks or napkins to make your reception table that much moodier. And don't be afraid to get creative with it. Instead of just going with the expected black and white combo, add in some antiqued gold and jewel tones to make your palette a little richer.
Why not incorporate an unexpected color of the season? Cranberries are harvested in fall, and this hue is the perfect balance between deep red and playful pink. Armstrong suggests that subtle color pops can go a long way when included even in small ways, such as adding a ribbon on a bouquet, and this just might be the ideal fit. Pair cranberry with burgundy or black for plenty of contrast, or work it in as a splash of color with a neutral scheme.
Forest green just screams fall, especially if you’re planning to host an outdoor soirée. But when it comes to forest green, Armstrong warns that it can be a bit tricky, and you may want to consider incorporating it in ways that won’t overdo it. A forest green candle or dark green plates can add such a stunning contrast when paired with rich wood tones or golds. Forest green can also be gorgeous when paired with jewel tones such as a deep burgundy.
Peach is that perfect orangey-pink color that reminds us of a deeper shade of sherbet, with a little added sophistication. And it’s the ideal shade to add a bold pop of color to a cake, a colored candle set-up, or even an escort cards display. Pair this shade with earth tones such as cream, caramel, or even navy blue.
Don't be afraid to stray from the typical deep, dark tones of fall. Adding an unexpected pop of bright color can make all the difference in setting up a gorgeous color palette you'll love.
Who says you can’t add a lighter blue to your fall color palette? This color is like a happier shade of denim. Cornflower is gorgeous when utilized in a colored candle or a table linen, and it pairs perfectly with so many other shades. Incorporate natural wood accents, sage greens, or even golden yellows for a stunning combination of color.
Dusty rose is one of the most versatile color options to incorporate into a wedding palette, as it can be paired for any season. Often, a couple may opt to incorporate the shade into the wedding party’s outfits, but there are so many other details where it can be added as an accent as well. Utilize dusty rose when decking a table with a soft linen down the center, napkins, or even a menu to tie it all together. And the other reason that makes dusty rose ideal? It can be paired with everything from neutral whites and creams to even a bold navy blue.
According to Norwood, this jewel-toned green is one of the most requested colors for fall. "It feels luxurious," she says. Emerald green can play a role in so many color palettes, from the primary color paired with white and gold, to utilizing it as an accent color in a deep, jewel-toned palette with navy blue and burgundy. Use it throughout your reception in a big way, or opt to add small splashes in items such as candle holders or ribbons.
Terracotta is the perfect mix between orangey-red, with a splash of pink mixed in. And while this hue can be used for boho summer weddings, it’s also a beautiful addition to a fall palette when paired with other warm tones of tan or marigold. Terracotta can be utilized in dinner settings or even incorporated when selecting the ribbon for your bouquet.
Navy can certainly be the focal point of your palette as this rich tone stands on its own, or you can sneak in some navy details via reception décor accessories if you don't want your palette to be too dark. We love the idea of lining tables with navy blue bud vases of varying sizes and filling them with a mix of white flowers, along with orange, red, and burgundy hues. Navy is also a gorgeous choice for a bold table linen, providing contrast to other elements on the table.
Apricot may not be the first color that comes to mind when you think of fall colors, but when you use it alongside surprising pops of dark red and burgundy (like in these figs and chocolate cosmos) this typical spring color feels much more like fall. While a palette of entirely apricot may not feel like the right fit for a cool, fall wedding, these warm tones certainly pair well with the deep tones of fall. Incorporate apricot into a bouquet or utilize it for a colored ribbon.
We love a good deep, dark, dramatic gray, and there's so many great ways to incorporate this classic color. Pair slate gray with shades of rich purple and lighter shades of gray for a sultry décor scheme. Or, use it in simple ways to set the tone for other colors to really shine through. "Utilizing a simple linen is one of the easiest things to add to set the stage and create a canvas," says Armstrong. "And a deep color will allow lighter flowers to pop against it."
Of course, this is the hue that just screams fall if you're opting for a truly seasonal, nature-inspired color palette. But fall color palettes don’t need to be all orange, yellow, and red. Add in a touch of pumpkin with cozy elements such as blankets on your reception seating, or pops of color in your bouquet, and balance it with neutral shades of white, gray, or cream.
Shades of purple can be tricky when it comes to fall. Unless you’re going for a fun, Halloween themed party, deep, dark purples have the ability to put off too much of a holiday-ready feel rather than a fall wedding look. But plum might just be the ideal exception, pairing perfectly with darker flowers and gorgeous greenery. Add splashes of this fall shade in the small details such as decorative elements on your reception tables, or to add contrast to your bouquet.
Sage green is another one of those wedding palette staples that can work for a sweet, summer garden party, a beach wedding, or a festive fall reception. But, the trick is to incorporate it in ways that make the most sense, rather than it just making an appearance simply because it’s attached to florals. "I like to make sure the foliage is as intentional as the palette is," says Armstrong. Pair sage green with simple, natural browns, or make it your main color, paired with whites and creams for a soft statement.
As you plan your color palette, consider the ways greenery will work with other hues as well. While your florals may automatically feature greenery, it doesn't have to be an afterthought. Work with your florist to be sure your greenery will complement additional tones for a cohesive palette.
You know we had to get a metallic in the mix. Copper is gorgeous any time of year, but for fall, it makes for the ideal complement to any color scheme. Copper is stunning on a table whether utilized with florals in a vase or a subtle splash of copper appears in your flatware. It can be paired with earth tones and red and yellow hues, but it also works well with deep, moody blues and purples.
Is there anything more quintessentially fall than a warm caramel latte while the leaves are tumbling from the trees? Who says you can’t capture that moment and bring it into your fall color palette. Caramel adds warmth to fall wedding décor, without going too deep into the realm of copper if metallics aren't your thing. Incorporate a caramel table linen or colored candle, and pair it with shades of apricot or cranberry or even bring a stunning teal into the mix.
This may just be the most popular fall color palette addition, but we think it’s for good reason. Truly, there's no end to the ways you can incorporate a classic burgundy into your fall wedding décor. Burgundy can be the main color, with big, bold splashes in your floral choices and reception décor. Or, it can be incorporated as a secondary color as a detail accent with warm tones such as cranberry and peach to provide contrast.
What better way to make a fall wedding feel rustic than to add this perfect hue. Rust is a balance between orange and brown, and it’s the ideal way to incorporate a toned-down shade of orange. Norwood suggests that adding rust tones into the details can make all the difference in a fall color scheme. "Adding this tone into the floral, the cake, stationery, napkins, etc. makes the possibilities endless,” she says.
A truly neutral color palette for fall can be so pretty, especially if you’re planning for golden hour photos amongst the trees. Pairing shades of white, subtle yellows, and cream can truly make for a dreamy combination. This hue can be incorporated into neutral bouquets or utilized when setting the table with a warm linen.