Over the past five months, we have explored a variety of different colors and the roles they play in our daily lives. If I have learned anything from my time researching color psychology, it's that these feelings we perceive are highly personal. How we feel about a color when we walk into a room can be dependent on our past experiences, our personality type, what we enjoy doing and so much more. This month's color is a great example of this concept. Blue can be found everywhere from our lakes and oceans to the summer sky and it can trigger a wide range of emotions in people. We will explore this idea and more below! Check out our past blogs here: RED, YELLOW, GREEN.
Final Color ~ Blue
If we've had the pleasure of welcoming you into our garden gift shop, you may have noticed that we LOVE blue, specifically navy blue and white. This color combo has been a Brys family favorite for generations and so it was only fitting that tradition be carried over into our beloved Secret Garden shop. How blue is perceived is highly subjective, especially since the color blue can range from shades of lighter blues to deep, intense blues. Blue rooms are known to boost productivity, and lower your heart rate and body temperature. Since it's possible that blue can evoke sadness or inspiration, it is difficult to classify this color as one that's simply "happy" or "sad". However, it's believed that for most people, blue represents calmness and stability.
How many foods can you think of that are naturally blue? Blue is not as common in nature as other colors and it's not often seen outside of berries and the occasional flower. Research shows that blue is one of the least appetizing colors! Since blue food can mean spoilage, mold or even poison, our brains are trained to avoid it. But try not to think about that next time you're snacking on blueberries!
We get so many questions about that beautiful, deep navy blue that we have painted in our shop, so we wanted to reveal that the color is called "Hale Navy" from Benjamin Moore Paints (code: HC-154). We know you were curious!
Décor & Entertaining
How have you incorporated blue into your home décor? Katie and Eileen Brys have always been huge fans of hunting down blue and white pottery and displaying it in their homes. It is theorized that this style of pottery began in Iraq in the 9th-century A.D.. By the 14th-century, there was a direct trading route between this area and China for delicacies such as this before its popularity exploded in the 18th-century across Europe and eventually into the new world. These works of art are often referred to as "pottery" though they can be made of porcelain as well. Blue and white pottery is typically colored with cobalt oxide which can withstand the highest firing temperatures, meaning that the color and the creation itself lasts much longer. If you look closely and do a little research, you can learn a lot about your pottery piece. There is often a stamp or engraving on the bottom and there are clues hidden throughout the artwork that can tell of its origin, the year it was made and the culture of its home region. We can't get enough of this classic, elegant décor and it looks great with fresh or dried lavender bouquets! We hope you get the chance to visit us this summer to cut your own lavender bundle and find that perfect vase in our shop. We love being able to display and share these beautiful pieces of history with all of you!
One of our most loved Lavendula anguvstifolia varieties is Betty's Blue! This variety is known for its large flowers, deep purple color and stems that hold its flowers in tight for that iconic lavender sprig look. Betty's Blue is in the English Lavender family, or Lavendula anguvstifolia, which means these plants are great for producing culinary lavender, bright purple dried bundles and a sweet smelling aroma. At the Secret Garden, we grow Betty's Blue in our field as well as offer starter plants (limited quantity)! In addition, we include this variety in our Culinary Lavender, Dried Bundles, and out "Liquid Gold" Lavender Essential Oil. If you're thinking of adding lavender to your garden, we can help! Betty's Blue is a great variety for Northern Michigan and the surrounding area. It is tolerant to drought, deer and other munching critters as long as it gets at least 8 hours of sun, it's not overwatered and it's in sandy soil for drainage. Remember to cut back your lavender in late summer or fall by trimming the sprigs back to the woody area of the plant. We love hearing about all the visitors we see with lavender in their own yard! Not only is lavender a beautiful and sweet-smelling addition to your yard, it attracts bees and butterflies! Its a win-win!
Lavender Lemonade Recipe
Just in time for Memorial Day Weekend! We are thrilled to share our famous Lavender Lemonade recipe with you! This lemonade is so refreshing on a hot summer day and great for sharing with friend, family and little ones! To get that yummy lavender flavor, we recommend using some of our Secret Garden grown Betty's Blue or another Lavendula anguvstifolia variety! Purchase a jar of Culinary Lavender or cut and dry your own! Its simple! Come visit us this summer and learn how to harvest a lavender bundle to take home. Hang your bundle upside down for a couple of weeks in a cool, dry place where it can't get direct sunlight. You'll notice your bundle begin to get stiff and crunchy - its ready! To use in your lemonade, simply pluck off the dried lavender buds, avoiding the leaves, and use those in the recipe below. Happy sipping!
Give These Products a Try!
While exploring blue at the Secret Garden, we can't help but go back to the scent that started it all - Lavender! Our Lavender Body Lotion and Hand Soap are now available in 16 oz. Refill Pouches! This allows easy reuse of materials and therefore, less waste! We are also excited to be transitioning to glass 8 oz. bottles for these products. Glass is not only better for the environment but better for the preservation of the product and the essential oils it contains. We love this new elegant look and hope you do to! You won't have to buy a soap dispenser because you can continue to refill these beautiful cobalt blue glass bottles. And while you're here, stock up on our Secret Garden grown & distilled "Liquid Gold" Essential Oil! Warm up your home with a vibrant bundle of Dried Lavender that will last for months!
Brys Secret Garden's In-House Blogger