Red symbolizes love and passion. Yellow stirs up happy and bubbly vibes. White and blue inspires feelings of calm and serenity. In most visual art forms, the proper use of colors is essential in creating pieces. Floral design is no exception! Using color theory is the first step in designing exquisite floral arrangements. Before this, we explored the origins and styles of different flower arrangements.
Now, we'll take up the basics of color and design in the art of floristry. We'll go much deeper into simple concepts like ROYGBIV. From there, we'll go over more complex principles of color combination. Here's the simple rundown of the color theory that every florist in the industry needs!
Depending on how you want to use them, colors can be soft and delicate, bright and lively, or quiet and somber. But whichever combination you use, it's important to refer to the color wheel! This will help your floral pieces look more pleasing and exquisite. There are three basic terms in color theory: primary, secondary, and tertiary. Primary colors are the three major parts of the color wheel - red, yellow, and blue. These are the only colors that aren't made from the mix of other colors. Secondary colors are blends of any two primary colors. Orange is the mix of red and yellow. Green is the mix of yellow and blue. Purple is the mix of blue and red. Tertiary colors are combinations of any primary color with any secondary color. Red orange, yellow orange, red violet, blue violet (indigo), and blue green (teal), are good examples of this.
It's important to use the color wheel in appropriate and artistic ways. It can help speed up the process of selecting flowers, foliage and accessories. With this, you can create delightful, harmonious arrangements and decoration with ease. There are a million and one ways to mix your colors and styles to match the theme and occasion! To kick off your creative flow of ideas, you can follow these four basic color harmonies. (Tip: Keep that color wheel in sight for an easy focus point with these combinations.).
These are pairs of colors right across from each other on the color wheel. Examples include red and green, yellow and violet, and blue and orange. They create an exciting palette given their clear contrast to each other. This is ideal for building intense or radiant floral arrangements!
These schemes consist of three colors beside one another on the wheel. It the two most popular divisions of colors: warm (red, orange, and yellow) and cool (blue, green, purple). Florists match these color harmonies to a variety of themes! Whether for somber moods or exciting motifs, they blend well to create a flowing look.
On a strict budget? These arrangements are light on the pocket but enchanting to the eye! Simple yet luxurious, they suit any theme or event with ease. Referred to as "greenery", they add the charm of nature's touch to any arrangement.
This scheme uses three colors in equal distance from each other on the color wheel. In floral arrangements, this appears in bundles of the primaries and secondaries. Florists often choose subtler or lighter shades of the triad. They also go for a mix of deep and soft shades for a pleasing, balanced aesthetic. Want a more in-depth guide on making floral designs for specific containers or occasions? Check out our two-part series on how to craft floral arrangements!
Read all about Flower Ornaments in our next article.