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Have you ever wondered why red, green and gold are the traditional colors most often used in Christmas decorating? The most likely explanation has to do with the holiday’s European origins. To the original celebrators of the season, evergreen plants including holly and mistletoe represented everlasting life, and were used to decorate homes and buildings during the cold, dark winter to remind people that spring would soon return. The ancient Romans would even exchange evergreen branches during winter as a symbol good luck and long lasting life.
This helps to explain the Christmas color green, but what of red?
Traditionally, Adam and Eve’s Day was celebrated by the churches on Christmas eve with a Paradise Play depicting the story of Adam and Eve and the Garden of Eden. Since it wasn’t possible to use a real apple tree in the plays during the winter season, red apples were fastened to the branches of pine trees instead. As a result, people began putting trees decorated with apples into their own homes, and the red and green Christmas tree was born. Red was also the color of the church Bishops’ robes, the same worn by the original St. Nicholas, our modern-day Santa Claus.
As for gold, it is the color of the sun that people looked forward to returning in spring, and of the fire that kept them warm during winter. It was also one of the gifts that the magi brought to the baby Jesus, and the color of the star they followed. You may be interested to know that Christmas lighting was originally inspired by the stars too, when Martin Luther first added candles to the Christmas tree in 1535 to simulate their twinkling glow.
While the classic colors of red, green and gold and traditional decorative elements like snowflakes and nutcrackers are universally enjoyed by customers for bringing back memories of Christmases past, their ubiquitous use may not do much to separate the identity of your business from others. Fortunately, modern holiday décor doesn’t have to be limited to these color conventions.
Nowadays, many businesses are using more unique Christmas lighting and color schemes in their holiday displays and creating their own special allure. There’s no need to stick to just red and green any more. In fact, one of the best colors to decorate with during Christmas is blue. Blue and silver are the traditional colors of Hanukkah, and they are great for developing an icy-themed, “Winter Wonderland” effect.
There are other choices as well. Pairing gold with rich, deep burgundy can make for a highly elegant and sophisticated Victorian design, as if your guests are attending a formal event from the past. Earthy brown pinecones and branches together with brightly colored fruits and berries create a natural, woodland feel. You could even go with almost entirely white lighting and décor, to evoke the peaceful purity of new fallen snow.
Maybe you’d like your commercial Christmas lighting and decorations to be something even more unique, to help generate buzz and PR. Bright pink and neon green are unexpected, playful colors that can look amazing together with gold or silver accents. Or how about an environmentally friendly Christmas tree made of recycled elements like cans and bottles? Mobile Illumination can also supply LED lighting for your property as a trendy, new alternative for your Christmas lighting design and installation. We can even help you develop Christmas lighting and décor in your company’s specific corporate colors, whatever they may be.
When it comes to the colors of Christmas lighting and décor, there are no hard and fast rules. By using your personal style and imagination to capture the feelings of joy and celebration that we all cherish during this special time of year, your company’s holiday spirit will always come shining through. And that’s what Christmas is all about.