Springtime Party Color Palettes
April 15, 2017
Halfpint Design - This bright centerpiece doesn't feel overwhelming by using neutrals for the rest of the tablescape

Springtime Party Color Palettes | Halfpint Design - This bright centerpiece doesn't feel overwhelming by using neutrals for the rest of the tablescape


Springtime Party Color Palettes

I’ve been working hard to get back on track. Does anyone else have a tough time with re-entry after a vacation? You aren’t going to feel sorry for me though because I went from Mazatlan Mexico to writing this post at my cabin in Bear Lake, Idaho for Easter weekend! But that means my Monday post became a Tuesday post and my Wednesday post became a Friday post! Work aside, Easter at the cabin is wonderful. There are so many creative hiding places for eggs around here. The world seems to slow down {as does my Internet connection!} without the distractions of regular housework, social visits, and work demands. It really allows us to spend quality family time, which this weekend means focusing on the meaning of Easter. I love all the symbolism of the holidays, some ancient and others more recent {thanks candy marketing}. But the colors we associate with Easter tend to be consistent year over year in most Western cultures.

Easter Color Meanings

  • Red (pink): represents the “Blood of the Lamb”, referring to the blood Jesus Christ spilled on the cross. {…and Starburst Jelly beans}
  • Light Green: reminds us of new grass and represents hope.
  • Yellow: represents the light of the sun, also called “the light of Christ”. {…and the center of a Cadbury Egg}
  • Purple: is a royal color that signifies the “Prince of Peace.”
  • Blue: represents the sky or heaven and is often used to depict the birth of the Savior in artwork. {…and definitely Cadbury Mini-Eggs}

While we enjoy the candy {yes, we do still get some Easter candy}, I like to remember the religious meanings of the colors we use on our Easter table. We’ll explore a few options for springtime party color palettes and how to make them work for you.

Four-Color Palette called a Tetrad


Springtime Party Color Palettes | Halfpint Design - Four-Color schemes are called Tetrads

The most complex scheme using four colors is called a “tetrad”; also known as a “double complement”. Unfortunately, the more colors you add to your springtime party color palette, the trickier is can be to juggle. A rainbow is the exception as it’s much easier to use the full spectrum {all the colors} than trying to take out a few.

Typically you’ll see all four colors in a similar value {the lightness or darkness} and brightness {or “chroma”} to help tie them all together. Keeping everything soft and light or jewel-toned and bright will make your event feel most cohesive.

Springtime Party Color Palettes | Halfpint Design - pastels vs brights. Both have their place

Pastels and Brights both have their place.

Pastel Colors

Pastels commonly used for Easter follow this rule. Pastels are often associated with babies and the theme of new beginnings. These light colors can assist relaxation and I’ve even seen them equated with sanity! Anyone suffering from SAD {seasonal affective disorder} can attest to the uplifting influence of spring.

Soft and Bright Combinations

Later in the year we see these lighter spring time colors give way to vibrant summer hues which are tempting to use. If you want a focal point choose one color to feature as brighter or darker than the rest. The garden party above only uses 3 colors but uses the green and pink in both soft and bright ways.

Easter grass accomplishes this, with its vibrant green as shown in the table below from House of Turquoise. Is there anything better after a long winter than fresh green grass!? Ok, there probably are…but it’s one of my favorites. The bright spring flowers a nice punch but they are balanced with blush flowers and a neutral table. Create a similar runner using this post on How to Grow Wheatgrass.

Springtime Party Color Palettes | Halfpint Design - This bright centerpiece doesn't feel overwhelming by using neutrals for the rest of the tablescape

Getting Technical

So much of what we see during the Easter holiday uses a basic complementary combinations of red, green and  yellow, purple. To get technical, the colors skew toward the “tertiary” colors of: red-violet, yellow-green and blue-violet, yellow-orange.

Springtime Party Color Palettes | Halfpint Design - Four-Color schemes are called Tetrads

Tetrad or Double Complement

During my research I found an interesting exception to the four-color “tetrad” rule. With Easter and springtime party color palettes we also add blue for a FIVE-color scheme, but beyond the occasional carrot, we don’t see much of its orange complement used in sophisticated events. Because I’m a color nerd it made me wonder why that is the case. When you think of orange, what kind of images, feelings, or emotions are stirred? I like coral and creamsicle orange, but am not a fan of using carrot orange as an event color.

Color Associations

Springtime Party Color Palettes | Halfpint Design - We all have individual color associations based on personal experience and culture. I think of plastic pumpkins when I hear "orange" whereas this Indian wedding uses orange in a very elegant way

We perceive and experience colors individually based on our memories or personal associations. Creamsicles remind me of ice cream trucks at the park in summer as a child. What’s not to love about that memory?

Cultural associations are also at play so someone like me; a female Caucasian in the United States, may experience color differently than someone in India, for example. Bright orange makes me think of Home Depot, fast food restaurants, and plastic pumpkins. It feels cheap and inauthentic to me. Whereas orange is an important color during Indian festivals, weddings, and holy garments with a completely different meaning.

However you lay it out, a four {or five color} springtime party color scheme is worth a little extra effort for the payoff of a gorgeously designed Easter brunch, garden party, baby shower, or unicorn birthday. What will you use this weekend for your Easter party? Soft pastels or brighter florals? And what do YOU think about orange?

Until next time,

Halfpint Design, personal

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Gingerbread houses in a row as table runner centerpiece for a Christmas Cookie Exchange Party I’m Bri of Parties With A Cause. I’m a mother to three crazy awesome kids, interior designer, & party planning junky. I love reading, globe trotting, and frozen yogurt. And I’m elevating the party experience one cause at a time! Read More

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