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Wedding & Event Design Essentials: Neutrals

event design essentials styling weddings guide neutral colour scheme studio sorores jessie westwood

Welcome to our a short series of guides on the best ways to adapt various looks and trends to create the ultimate design scheme for your wedding or event space.

If you missed them before you can find our first three mini guide links below:

Our final post in this mini series is about...


So often we get requests from clients who just want a "white" wedding. We get it... timeless, classic, simple and effective. However we will usually try and elevate this concept by swapping it to one which focuses more broadly on "neutrals". These colours are anything but bland, and will allow you to create much more depth and interest in your overall design scheme.

Always considered calm and soothing, neutral colours vary hugely in tone, from the softest white to almost black charcoal. The spectrum originates in nature and the use of natural materials so this is the perfect colour palette to bring in texture and shape with use of things like stone, shell, linen, cotton, seagrass, wicker, pearl, wood and other similar surfaces in your decor. All of these elements are effective and simple to use when you want to add accents to a neutral scheme.

The other wonderful think about these neutrals is that they will sit beautifully with most colour groups, so you can also use them in other schemes or link spaces together cohesively if you want to use colour psychology to switch up an atmospheres between event spaces.

You can also divide neutrals into cool and warm shades (we usually lean towards the latter in event design, but not always!), and we will often utilise them if we want to slightly pull back a fun and lively colour palette, or enrich and enhance one that is more subdued and subtle. Depending on materials used, they can make a really elegant statement in more modern and one dimensional schemes too.

Don't forget layers with texture and pattern, from our earlier guides in this series. For us the way we elevate a neutral event design is always to layer lots of coordinating and complementary colours for more variety and warmth, but we also ensure there is plenty of texture utilised in our tablescapes and florals. Similarly we bring in patterns to give more visual depth - with this colour scheme natural patterns like flowers, animal prints and linears will work best - remember you must either keep these very subtle or use sparingly as accents. This is not the time for clashing maximalism.


  • This is probably one of the hardest palettes and design schemes to pull off successfully, it is anything but simple

  • Neutrals can still be bright and warm. You can offset paler shades like cream, ecru and white with hints of warmer colours like oat, beige, stone and honey.

  • If you prefer more muted neutrals then we only advise being vary wary of using too much cool grey as a base. Instead use soft grey-undertone shades (think mushroom or elephant) as a base and then accent with those harder cooler pewters, silvers and metal like tones.

  • If you love pastels but want to be a little more grown up with your design scheme, then neutrals are an excellent choice - just choose very ethereal tones like oyster, pearl, vanilla, almond and ensure some warmth is in your moodboard.

  • We absolutely adore a more moody neutral space. Keep to earth like tones but you can create some real depth and a more evening like feel with chocolate brown, rust, charcoal, forest green and slate colours.

Creating a colour palette for a design scheme takes talent, time and consideration. Understanding design theory is something too few people consider when gathering inspiration or briefing their vendors and suppliers for a wedding or party. To elevate and create a more luxury experience you have to be able to consider more than a theme or single colour choice.

When we are hired for our full service wedding or event planning we will always weave our experience together with your vision and personal preferences, creating storytelling through event design in a unique and personal way. We advise not only how to achieve visual success but also how to ensure every element works logistically, with the flow of your event and guest movements considered, expertise in technical design, and full management of every detail with trusted suppliers and artists we source and ensure are credible and reliable.

We offer 1:1 expert hourly advice sessions for anyone struggling with this side of wedding planning, which gives you immediate and in depth access to our know how and advice, where you can "ask us anything" about your design worries.

PLUS we have just launched a new virtual design service so do book a consultation if you feel you need more support in bringing your wedding or event vision to life!


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