Holiday Color Series: Blue Holidays With You
Thus far, our Holiday Color Series has covered the traditional colors of red, green, and white. This week, I want to move beyond the colors we typically associate with the Christmas season, and have a little fun with the gorgeous and oh-so-winter-appropriate color blue.
Winter BluesThere something absolutely magical about blue during wintertime, and it's even more beautiful when paired with white or silver. This ethereal combination is elemental in nature, and effortlessly calls up feelings of tranquility and nostalgia. It feels special, and it is.
And when we talk blue holiday flowers, we are also talking about something really special. Blue isn't a typical flower color, and according to The Science of Plant Color, "less than 10% of the 280,000 species of flowering plants produce blue flowers," making a blue holiday flower a rare commodity indeed. We've all seen our fair share of dyed roses and carnations, but why fake it when you can find authentic and unique shades blue in nature?
|Natural blue flowers|
Traditionally, iris has been popular flower for Hanukkah, as blue holds a special symbolic significance in this winter celebration. Historically, the Israelites were instructed to use a particular kind of violet-blue (known as tekhelet) interwoven in the white threads of their prayer shawls (tallitot). This expensive and rare blue dye was made from a type of snail, which gave the blue color an even more special, elevated status.
Today, this divine color combination is still used throughout Jewish culture, and especially around the holiday season, with blue symbolizing divinity and white indicating purity and innocence.
Iris varieties come in blue hues ranging from Telstar's dark indigo to Sky Diver's light blue, all the way to Casablanca's bright white, which allows for great versatility and flexibility in holiday design. Below are some beautiful arrangements which pair blue iris with white lilies, lavender matsumoto asters, greens, matricaria, and tulips.
Hydrangea varieties naturally give us several shades of blue, and their color and intensity can vary even more depending on their soil acidity. Stunning ornaments, wreaths, and centerpieces can be made with hydrangeas; you can leave the bloom heads natural, dry them, or even spray a few of them gold or silver for some extra holiday oomph. I did a little search on Pinterest and was rewarded with a plethora of blue holiday hydrangea ideas. Check out some of my favorites below:
|Hydrangea Wreaths in a wide range of hues|
Juniper berry is the wild horse of this blog post, because a) it isn't a flower, and b) it isn't even a berry. This low-elevation evergreen has fragrant, green to silver-blue foliage, which is interspersed with clumps of small blue "berries," which are actually modified conifer cones. Regardless of what it is, juniper berry branches are great for the holidays. Its natural evergreen background and pops of color makes it easy to work with on its own, and it combines gorgeously with other embellishments (such as fruits, flowers, or ribbons) as seen in the photos below.
No matter what colors you choose to use this season, traditional or otherwise, your holiday decor can be just as unique as you are. After all, a Blue Christmas doesn't have to be as sad as Elvis makes it seem...
"And when those blue iris start falling
That's when those blue hydrangeas start calling
You'll be feelin' dapper with your blue juniper,
And I'll have a blue, blue blue blue Christmas"