Christmas Colors – Why Red and Green?

Everyone who celebrates Christmas knows that the universal colors of the season are red and green. Red is the color of Santa’s suit and green is the color seen on trees, wreaths, and the holly hanging above our doors. But why and how did these colors become the visual ambassadors of the holiday season? Let’s find out.

The Importance of Green

Back advances in technology-enabled us to keep plants well beyond their original seasons, wintertime was often a bleak and dark affair. The coming of the winter wind and cold temperatures left the landscape bleak and devoid of the typical greenery and life that was seen throughout the spring and summer months. Evergreen plants, however, manage to survive during the winter months, maintaining their greenery despite harsh weather conditions. Because of this resiliency, plants such as holly and mistletoe were often incorporated into the home décor to not only brighten up the home but also remind the inhabitants that winter would not last forever. We still hold these traditions today when we set out a sprig of mistletoe in our doorways and put up a Christmas tree in honor of the holiday season.

Red Tying Together for the Holiday Win

It was once a common tradition to hold Paradise Plays on Christmas Eve. The plays would serve as a means of telling stories from the bible to people who were unable to read it for themselves. Often a ‘Paradise Tree’ was used to represent the Garden of Eden and was often a pine tree with red apples tied to its branches. The apples of course represented the original sin and the inevitable fall of man.

But apples were not the only inspiration for the frequent use of red in the holiday season. It is also the color of the Holly berries we so often see in holiday decorations and also references the blood of Jesus who is believed to be born during this time of year.

Fun Fact: Santa’s crimson suit is often attributed to the successful ad campaign launched by Coca-Cola in 1931.

So, there you have it, the official Razor Art Studio explanation on why there are so many uses of green and red through the holiday season. But just because it’s Christmas doesn’t mean you are limited to just those two colors. Don’t be afraid to throw in some gold, white, or blue into your holiday-themed décor. Heck, honestly you can use whatever colors you want because it's your Christmas done your way, right? But at least you now know the origins of the two most prevalent colors during this time of year.

Happy decorating!


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