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Why Color Palettes are Essential to Planning Any Party

Color palettes, not to be confused with palates, are essential to any formal celebration, be it a wedding, graduation or birthday. Having a desired color scheme in mind when party planning will streamline your process as well as expedite it because it drives every decision you make - from linens to flowers to favors.

The first thing I do after selecting a party’s overall theme is determine the color palette I will pair it with - generally, I try to keep my palletes within 3 or 4 hues.

For this particular celebration I planned, a Bat Mitzvah, I chose to draw inspiration for my color scheme from the invitation for the party. Pear Tree Greetings designed a gorgeous, purple Bat Mitzvah invite so I decided to look to their deep royal hue and give my party a “Pretty in Purple” theme.

In addition to the purple, I incorporated whites (thanks to the copy on the invitation!) and golds (think royal and elegant) into the mix for quite the display. The three shades complimented one another in a soft, feminine, yet royal way - perfect for a Bat Mitzvah.

How to Choose Your Party's Color Pallete

Some parties, like baby showers, offer natural color palletes while others prove more challenging. Here are a few ways to decide on yours:

Look to your invitation for inspiration. It's the first thing guests will see around the party, so it's a natural element to inspire the rest of the shindig.

Think about a special guest of honor. Is this a birthday, wedding, graduation? Often, these types of celebrations honoring a particular person or couple are easy to customize according to their favorite colors.

What's the occasion? Holidays, fundraisers or reunions will be more theme driven, so consider the overarching concept behind your party and work with that when choosing colors.

Having now determined your color scheme, the rest of the planning process will fall into place more easily. 

Working from the ground up is always helpful, so the next thing I put into place were my table coverings and linens. This is the easiest way to color your party and is the “base” of your décor.

Again, in this case, I chose royal purple linen to cover the tables, which painted my entire scene purple and brought my gorgeous invitation directly into my party space. 

Once the table cloth was in place, I used purple and white patterned fabric to create table runners which ran the width of the table and added a touch of character and depth to the table. Because I had my color scheme in mind, this decision was made less distracting by the overabundance of inspiring fabrics and patterns I had available to me.

Bringing my third color, gold, into the mix was as easy as locating choice china to place at each seat and selecting table decorations accented by the metallic hue.

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Meet our Writer
Jennifer Geddes
Celebrations Writer

Jennifer Kelly Geddes has hosted Christmas cookie swaps, New Year's open houses, Thanksgiving for 22, and all manner of dinner parties in her Manhattan and Ghent, NY homes.

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