At the Bridal Events bridal show the other day, we were asked by several brides about black magic roses against a wine colored dress for their bridesmaids. Other florists had suggested doing this, but we say think twice. What looks great to the human eye can look completely different to the camera’s digital sensor.
To start with, a Black Magic rose is really just a deep burgundy. The color cannot be guaranteed—it’s a flower. Sometimes you get a really deep, luscious burgundy, and sometimes you get closer to maroon or crimson. No one has any control over the exact color, that’s just how the plants grow. In this case, you’ll have a clash between the redder shades of the flower and the bluer shades in the dresses.
Bridesmaid wine dress
Secondly, Black Magic don’t photograph well. I’ll ask Paul Meyer to add some technical details on his blog (he was the photographer next to us at the show, and I talked to him about this idea a little). Because of the blues and intense reds, Black Magic can saturate the sensor in a digital camera, and getting them to look good requires some color shifting in Photoshop. Without some time intensive layering techniques, this is going to change the colors of everything in the photo, too.
Besides the saturation, the velvety petals on Black Magic absorb a lot of light. In lower light conditions (like a romantic reception, or some artistic photography on location), they tend to completely disappear, especially when placed against a dark background.
They’ll show up against a bride’s white dress, but not against the bridesmaids’ wine dresses. If you add in other colors (the suggested color was hot pink to pop off the deep reds), you’ll end up with dots of hot pink and holes where the Black Magic should be.
We don’t want to give you the idea to not use Black Magic roses—we love them, and they’re beautiful. We just suggest you don’t use them in bridesmaids bouquets if they’re wearing wine (or similarly) colored dresses. Also, if you are using Black Magic roses at all, talk to your photographer for any suggestions they have for planned photos, so they don’t end up with a lot of unusable shots.