Mardi Gras Colors

Happy Fat Tuesday! As the festivities begin let’s raise a glass to one of the most colorful cities I have ever experienced- New Orleans. While we're at it let's look at the trio of colors seen everywhere and the Mardi Gras colors meaning.


To find out how these colors were chosen and why I went directly to the source Mardi Gras New Orleans.

Official Mardi Gras Colors Meaning

Rex, the King of Carnival, selected the Mardi Gras colors in 1872 to honor the visiting Russian Grand Duke Alexis Alexandrovich Romanoff, whose house colors were purple, green and gold.

The 1892 Rex Parade theme "Symbolism of Colors" affirmed the Mardi Gras colors meaning. Purple stands for justice, green for faith, and gold for power.

I also learned another fun fact about these colors.

Mardi Gras colors influenced the choice of school colors for archrivals Louisiana State University and Tulane University. When LSU was deciding on its colors, the shops in New Orleans had stocked up on purple, green, and gold material for the Mardi Gras season. LSU decided upon purple and gold, and bought much of it. Tulane bought much of the only remaining color--green! (Their colors are blue and green.)

Remember to wear of purple, green and gold during Mardi Gras whenever you're not in costume and enjoy being surrounded by the Mardi Gras colors meaning - justice, faith, and power!

if you aren't able to be in New Orleans for Mardi Gras you can do what my sister does. She celebrates Fat Tuesday from the comfort of her living room by drinking a king-size glass of her favorite cocktail- a Pimm’s Cup and imaging she is back at the Napoleon House Cafe partaking in some king crabs and king cake.

Napoleon House Bar & Cafe Pimm’s Cup Recipe
  • Fill a tall 12 oz. glass with ice
  • Add 1 1/4 oz. Pimm’s #1
  • Add 3 oz. lemonade
  • Top off with 7up
  • Garnish with a spear of cucumber
  • Sit back and enjoy!
Read Time: 2 min
author avatar
Kate Smith
Kate Smith is an optimistic, expressive, artist, designer, writer and color fanatic. With her warm and witty style, Kate teaches you to clearly see, understand and be inspired by color. Then she guides you step-by-step to develop your own unique color sense-ability and achieve results you never dreamed possible.
  • Reshawn Cameron says:

    Mardi Gras doesn’t d not originate in New Orleans. It is not the source.

    • Kate Smith says:

      Yes, you are correct, but I never said it originated in New Orleans. When I said source I was referring to the organization I referenced for the color meaning. 🙂

  • Eddie Ross says:

    So great meeting you last night!!! can’t wait for you to come up and do some antiquing!


    • Kate Smith says:

      Looking forward to it, Eddie. xo

  • Juli says:

    One of my all-time favorite cities, and such great color inspiration there on the many painted stucco and wood-siding homes. I like your idea to bring a little Mardi Gras into our own home. To further set the mood, you might consider purchasing a CD from the Preservation Hall website, or downloading some New Orleans jazz on I-Tunes. Laissez bon ton role!

    • Kate Smith says:

      Great ideas, Juli! Happy Fat Tuesday!

  • pve says:

    love the outfit and the drink and I have some fun chunky beads to accessorize!

    • Kate Smith says:

      The outfit is perfect for a night out in the Big Easy but I’ll be home getting in the spirit of Mardi Gras by sitting back with a Pimm’s Cup.

  • >