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Haint Blue Ceilings

Do y’all know the reason many ceilings in the lowcountry are painted blue?

Across the South, the tradition of painting ceilings blue is passed down from generation to generation. There are many stories and legends as to why.

The painted blue porch ceiling started in the American South around 200 years ago. The tradition originated with the Gullah in Georgia and South Carolina. The ceiling of the slave quarters at the Owens–Thomas House in Savannah, Georgia, built in the early nineteenth century, was painted haint blue. The pigment was sourced from crushed indigo plants. Indigo was a common source for haint blue prior to the American Revolution, when indigo was a common crop for plantations in the American South, but the tradition survived well after the decline in indigo cultivation.

Gullah folklore explains that ghosts, also referred to as “haints,” were not able to cross water. In order to repel evil spirits from plantations, porch ceilings were painted a soft blue. The color was meant to mimic water in an effort to keep any haints or spirits at bay. The Gullah people made sure to cover all their bases—windows, doors and shutters were often painted the same color of “haint blue.

In addition to keeping you safe from evil spirits, the color blue is known to be calming and soothing. To me, me there is nothing better than sitting on a sunny porch sipping on some sweet tea………or in my case most likely a glass of wine!

PSA this is not my porch but wouldn’t I love it to be???

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