How to Decorate Your Red Wedding

Former Vogue editor and fashion world icon, Diana Vreeland, loved the color red. In fact, she’s quoted as saying:

“I can’t imagine becoming bored with red – it would be like becoming bored with the person you love.”


julep cups with red flowers floral tablecloth diana vreeland dinner from domino
Large black urns with roses, red coral, & flowers in julep cups, on tables draped in red fabric, create this wonderful tablescape inspired by Diana Vreeland’s Park Avenue apartment. (via domino)


Red has long been associated with love and passion. So it makes perfect sense to pick a red wedding theme (particularly if you love the color as much as Vreeland did).

Done right, red wedding décor has a huge impact and some wonderful associations too.


red wedding palette inspiration from the knot with gold bowls
Celebrate you and your flame with a saturated palette of reds and oranges, plus accents that bring the heat. – the knot California.

Why Have a Red Wedding??

Let’s start by saying – it’s your big day. If you love the color red, that’s reason enough to choose it for your wedding.

But there are lots of other great reasons to opt for red wedding decor.

Firstly, the color red carries lots of wonderful meanings, well suited to a wedding day. In the west, it represents love, romance and excitement. In China, red symbolizes luck, joy and happiness.

Red also represents confidence. If a wedding is a chance to showcase your personality and that of your partner, red is bold, fearless and lots of fun.

Tempted by red? Go your own way and embrace its vivid tones!


What shades of red are there?

When you’re picking out red wedding decor, it’s really important that you’re able to describe your vision to the people around you – whether that’s your wedding planner, your venue or your other half.

That starts by pinning down the shade of red you particularly love. Here’s a quick rundown of the different tones you can choose between.

Vivid red: This is as red as it gets – the primary red shade we’d probably refer to as scarlet.

Dark red: These dark reds contain purple or brown tones and are relatively muted. Think burgundy, maroon and oxblood.

Orange red: Also known as chili red, vermillion or tomato red, orange reds are fun and vibrant.

Pink red: For a more romantic feel, pick a red that contains shades of pink. These include, amaranth, ruby red and crimson.


the wall street journal flower school red valentines day arrangement
An unconventional, layered arrangement of oxblood amaryllis, single-petal red tulips, crimson carnations and a couple of red garden roses. (via Wall Street Journal)


Red Wedding Decorations

So you’ve decided to go with a red wedding theme. And you’ve picked out your shade. What now?

It’s time to weave that red color scheme into your wedding decor. You want it to be perfectly pitched – eye-catching but not overbearing.

Here are the things you need to consider to bring your red wedding decor together beautifully:


Color accents

Any wedding color scheme needs a main color and at least two accent colors. One of those accents should be relatively neutral.

A balanced color scheme will help to unify bridal party outfits, your venue and – ultimately – your wedding photographs. 

So what works well with red?

You can tone red down with whites, greys, natural greens or champagne tones. Alternatively, go all out glam by accenting red with rich jewel tones. You can also up the romance by combining red with pinks.

Just be sure to consider the connotations of a few famous red color schemes.

Primary red and bright forest green make people think of Christmas. Red, white and blue is forever linked with the Fourth of July. Unless you want your wedding associated with those occasions, tread carefully when picking out accents.



Start as you mean to go on with red-themed wedding stationery. Your save the dates and invitations help set the stage for your big day.

Add red embellishments to your invites and consider sending them in on-theme red envelopes. Then get thinking about how you’ll incorporate your chosen shade of red into stationery for the day itself.


red rose centerpieces on long tables for red wedding event decor
Just a few elements that give lots of look: A mirror table runner, red lush red rose centerpieces, and mercury glass votive holders. (via Colin Cowie Weddings)


Floral arrangements

There are so many flowers to choose from when you’ve decided on red wedding decor.

Pick beautiful, classic blooms like red roses, tulips, camellia or poppies. If you’re planning a winter wedding, you could opt for poinsettia or a spray of red berries.

You can even go tropical with your wedding floral arrangements, with red Peruvian lilies, red anthurium or even red-toned succulents.



Your centerpieces are one of the key places to showcase your red theme. As well as red florals, you’ll want to take a look at the following:



If you’re incorporating lots of red tones into your floral arrangements, choose vases in neutral shades. Clear glass vases or matte metallic vases will give your blooms space to shine.


A uniform arrangement of bright red anemones by Denise Fasanello Flowers. It’s the perfect choice for a classic bride who gravitates towards daring colors. (via Martha Stewart Weddings)


Pick tapered red candles for tall neutral-toned candlesticks. Or for a more boho vibe, incorporate a few red votive holders along the length of a banquet table.



If florals just aren’t your thing, there are lots of original and exciting centerpiece alternatives.

For a red wedding theme, consider shiny red apples or pomegranates in a tall glass vase, a garland of red foliage or a lavish ostrich feather arrangement.


brides magazine gautemalan getaway wedding
Bold yellow and red tables with colorful votive holders A combination of metal trays and glass bowls serve as centerpieces for loose and floating flowers. (via BRIDES Receptions)


Table settings

If your wedding decor still doesn’t feel red enough, choose a red runner or red napkins for your tables.

If you’ve picked a particularly muted shade of red, you might even get away with a rustic, red linen table cloth. Just be sure to pair it with other table linens in your neutral accent.


cranberries in silver bowls and glass placecards
Use cranberries in a mix of small coupes, vases, and egg cups, to hold a place cards at each table setting. (via Better Homes and Gardens)


Whilst having all reception tables garbed in red may feel a little OTT, you can certainly emphasize your theme at the cake table. Use red fabrics or flowers to give your wedding cake the stage it deserves.


red and orange bar at the parker palm springs
Follow your regency-inspired paprika-orange-colored dreams! A custom bar can be anything you want it to be. – David Stark


Food and drink

The food and drink you serve at your wedding is another great place to pick up your red theme.

Choose a red cocktail, like a Singapore Sling or a Cosmopolitan, as your signature wedding drink.

You could serve champagne with raspberries on beautiful antique silver trays instead. Or just decorate your welcome drinks with edible floral garnishes – in red, of course.


champagne coupes with red raspberries on silver tray
Champagne coupes always feel extra special. (via Pinterest)


And why not surprise your guests by cutting into a red velvet wedding cake?


Bridal party outfit accents

Bridesmaid dresses are often at the heart of a wedding color scheme. But other items of bridal party clothing can help tie your red theme together.


natural black red raffia clutch bag
Bridesmaids gift: A stylish clutch, handmade in Madagascar.


Pick out red ties and pocket squares for the groomsmen. Gift your bridesmaids red clutch bags. The bride may want to wear scarlet red shoes under her white dress or sport a favorite shade of red lipstick.

It’s little touches like these that will really bring your red wedding decor to life.