ESIF2012: Psychology of Color & Your Events

At the 2012 Event Solutions Idea Factory & CaterSource show, Sasha Souza, author of “Signature Sasha: Magnificent Weddings by Design” and half of the alter ego “Sparkliatti” blogging duo, transported the audience into the world of color theory and how it applies to the event industry.  Here is my session summary.

First things first, you need to start getting color inspired by checking out:

  • Blogs
  • Online galleries
  • Wedding magazines
  • Home and garden magazines
  • Artistic books
  • Social sites like Pinterest

A side note about Pinterest from Sasha: when using Pinterest, Sasha doesn’t mind the public seeing her inspiration boards because the pins aren’t what the event will look like and allows couples to add to their own board.  It is a great way to collaborate with the couples and really understand what inspires them.

When you begin to think about the intricacies of color, the first thing you may take note of is how many different shades of one color there is.  When talking to your clients it is important to really nail down what they mean by “coral” for example. 

Another critical piece of information regarding color is to take note on specific cultures that need to be taken into account.  For example (and you will see more throughout the pictures below), pink within the American culture can symbolize affectionate, caring, and strong, but in South Africa pink can symbolize poverty.  I’m glad I live where I do because pink is one of my favorite colors!!

Every color has many names which allows you to be creative with words.  The picture below shows many examples – e.g. “yellow” can be citrine, topaz, or lemon among others.  So while the term yellow may not resonate with your client, topaz may be exactly what they are thinking and really relate to.            

Below is more information on specific colors:

Pink – affectionate, individual, sharing, caring, strong.  Sasha talked about a groom who didn’t want pink but was fine with begonia, which was a great finding because all his fiancé’s tear sheets had pink in it.

pink color theory

pink cultural meaning

Orange – cheerful, exciting, playful, jovial.  Alternative ways of saying orange and purple is exotic plum and cantaloupe.

Yellow – Enlightened, inspiration, virtuous.

yellow color theory 

Brown – Steady, dependable, comfortable.

Green – Fresh, tranquility, security.

Violet – Passion, luxury, depth.

Grey – Careful, focused, dedicated, articulated.

grey color theory

grey cultural meaning

Blue – Soothing, comfort , cooling, orderly.  Black is the number one color for grooms along with green and black.

White – Purity, goodness, innocence, serenity, simplicity.  In outdoor settings, white is often too bright because it is reflective.

white color theory 

Real Wedding Color Example:  Caroline & Chris

The next set of slides/pictures is of a real wedding that Sasha designed.  She takes you through her short survey of the bride and groom, then gives you the description/proposal that she give to the couple, the inspiration board that she creates, and then pictures of the final product from the wedding.

real wedding example

wedding design survey wedding design description wedding inspiration board 
flower girl petalscreate your own wedding herb tossbridal bouquet
reception centerpiece

Throughout the session and after Sasha’s talk about colors, she was gracious in giving more of her thoughts and pointers – here are a few of them:

  • Try to avoid matching flowers to gowns.
  • She will put glassware on the table however it looks good visually, not by a set of rules.
  • It’s ok to give your opinion, that is why your clients hire you. “You hire me for my opinion, I will freely give it to you.”
  • Likes to pair colored table cloths with white flowers and white chairs
  • Sasha pours her own candles for events; only use white if they are meant to be white.
  • Since many places do not allow to throw rice, seeds, or petals, Sasha’s go to is to have a herb toss.
  • Spray paint is her best friend to keep reusing the same vessels and props but still have a new look.

Connect with Sasha Souza:!/sparkliatti

Do you already use color theory when designing an event?  If you didn’t before, will you now?

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Tags: ESIF2012,Event Solutions Idea Factory,CaterSource,sasha souza,color theory,event design,weddings

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