Hey, my friends, I feel like it’s been a while! Now that I’ve launched my new templates I thought it would make sense to create a series of posts about how to create your brand color palette and choose your website font pairings. I realized after chatting with a few people that one of their biggest struggles when diving into a template (or new brand) is simply not being able to narrow down their color palette. So, today we are chatting all about it!
The questions below are just a small sampling of what kind of questions I ask my branding clients, but this should help you get a start on how to find your brand colors.
This is just for you to reference as we move forward, I want to see if what you have in your head currently will start to align as we go through the post.
Ex: sophisticated, ethereal, modern, minimal, warm, relaxed, whimsical, calm, earthy, elegant, etc.. (feel free to google more too).
Ex: stability, mindfulness, dependability, comfort, affection, ambition, balance, grace, etc
See below and it can definitely be a mix of a couple seasons too!
This would be for clothes, office decor, accessories, office supplies, etc. Think about your idea client here (not just where you like to shop). Ex: Crate & Barrel, Kendra Scott, Magnolia, Madewell, etc.
Example: Magnolia feels organic, textured, natural. Madewell feel simplistic, minimal, neutral. Kendra Scott is bold, creative, playful. ETc..
Describe who they are (career, location, clothing, hobbies, books they read, instagrams they follow, style of their home, etc).
This is your ‘brand essence’ and what kind of emotion you want your brand to provide people.
Now that you’ve answered a few questions, let’s dive into color theory. As we know, color can play a huge part in emotions and buying. You’ll notice a ton of fast food restaurants use red and yellow, a lot of natural products use brown and green, and so on.
So, as you read through the colors below (with their positive qualities) I recommend that you start to look back on those 8 questions I asked previously and see if the colors you originally chose with your color palette start to align with the meaning behind the color. P.S. they don’t all have to match exactly, but they should start to align with your adjectives, essence, and values.
From above, are the qualities within each color beginning to blend with the questions you wrote previously? Overall, we want to make sure that the palette you choose starts to represent your adjectives, values, your season, and your brand essence (on how people feel when seeing your brand).
For example: If my color palette is navy blue, muted pale blue, light grey, charcoal, and white, but my season is Summer and my adjectives are ‘Cheerful, Bold, Creative’ and the shops I chose were Kate spade, Jonathan Adler, and Kendra Scott..it wouldn’t quite make sense with the color palette.
Now, for a super important part when finalizing and narrowing down your color palette is understanding your the color palette FORMULA. This is basically the formula I use when building out a clients brand and how to properly use it throughout their brand pieces, website, and so on.
THE MAIN COLORS: These are simply the main colors that represent your brand. It should be your go-to when choosing color for your site details, print materials, etc. For me, I have that dusty grey/lavender and then a charcoal grey. This is used for backgrounds on my site, for stationery pieces, the color of my nails or shirt in my photos, etc.
THE NEUTRAL COLORS: These are the colors that help pull it all together, this can be the color used for text, maybe it’s a soft creme to add warmth to the brand, a pale grey, etc. Typically used for patterns/textures with subtle elements, maybe it’s the type of paper used for printing, maybe it’s the type of filter used on images, etc.
THE ACCENT COLORS: These are the colors that will compliment your main colors. For me I have a dirty saffron color and a lighter pale lavender shade that I used very sparingly, but can be used for buttons (to accent), maybe it’s a pop of color in my brand photos, maybe it’s a heading text, etc. They shouldn’t be confused with the main colors but complimenting them.
With all of that being said I thought I would pull a couple palette examples together for you to see how it works! If you take a peek at my templates HERE too, you’ll probably get an idea of how I use color palettes and pairings (main/accent) throughout the site.
Were you able to align your adjectives, essence, ideal client profile, values, etc with your ‘brand season’, your color palette, and color theory? Were you able to narrow down how each color will play a part in your brand (main/neutral/accent)? This should be a good start on how to create your brand color palette and hope I’ve helped you just a bit and feel free to check out the other blog posts about branding below!