NEWS & INFORMATION

Why Paint Your Porch Ceiling Blue?

October 5, 2016

Liven up your front porch with a little paint that includes a lot of history!

Haint BlueWhat was once known as just an old southern tradition – painting your porch ceiling blue – spans further than just the south and is still a living tradition today. With several theories as to where the blue ceilings started and why they are painted blue, it is a design element of homes that has spanned centuries. So why paint your porch ceiling blue?

Regional Reasoning

Blue porch ceilings are popular in the northwest because of the Aurora Colony, which yielded aurora blue ceilings, and gained popularity in the 1850s.

Other historical cities throughout the northeast, from Boston to Philadelphia, also donned blue porch ceilings where Victorian and Colonial homes were prevalent. The color sky blue became popular with the Victorians, as they preferred the warm colors of nature throughout their homes. A blue porch ceiling reminded them of the actual sky. Victorian and colonial homes in the area still carry on the tradition of blue porch ceilings.

Insect Repellant

Some believe that the blue porch ceilings repel insects and bugs. When porch ceilings were first painted blue, the paint was mixed with lye, which was a known insect repellent. Therefore, the porches tended to repel insects because of the paint composition. The paint needed to be refreshed every couple of years, providing a continued presence of lye for insect repelling and bug free porch sitting.

Others believe that the insects are fooled by the color of the porch ceiling. The bugs won’t nest in the porch ceilings if they are blue because the insects believe the porch ceiling is actually the sky.

Haint Blue

Blue porch ceilings have been popular in the south for centuries. The soft blue-green colored ceiling was something that began years ago, but is still seen in many homes throughout the south today, specifically on South Carolina homes. Homeowners carry on the tradition as it was something that their great grandmothers, grandmothers and mothers did, and southern homes want to stick to their southern roots.

Many suggest that “haint blue” ceilings were developed from a fear of haints, or restless spirits of the dead that have not moved on from the physical world. The blue ceiling is intended to protect the homeowners from the evil of the haints.

Whatever the Reason…

Many people today choose to paint their porch ceilings blue simply because they prefer the look and feel it provides their home. A calming blue-green color creates a relaxing atmosphere for anyone enjoying quality time on the porch with friends and family.

Choosing the Shade

If you choose to paint your porch ceiling blue, whether that decision is based on history or a preference in design, select the shade of blue that best fits you and your home. While traditionally a lighter blue-green is what is used, there is no right or wrong way to implement a blue ceiling on your porch!

If you’re looking for a list of light blue options, click here to see a list of 50 shades of “haint blue”:

http://trippalukastyle.com/southern-style-haint-blue-porch-ceilings-new-orleans-northshore

Some Examples

We’ve created this board on Pinterest of some “haint blue” ceilings that we’ve collected to help inspire you –

https://www.pinterest.com/dunbarbuilders/haint-blue-ceilings

Good luck if you decide to go “haint blue”!