There are some colours you see absolutely everywhere, no matter what. On any given day if you leave your house you will no doubt see green SOMEWHERE- a tree, some grass, a leaf, a recycle bin, a wine bottle. Even in the middle of the desert, the middle of the ocean, or deep in the concrete jungle you can see green. It is, after all the colour of the earth. Oh wait… the Earth, that’s the blue planet, right?
A colour we see just as much, if not more frequently, is blue. Blue is in the sky, the water, in marketing and design, deep in precious works of art, and in the mirror for those rare few with blue eyes. If you’re me, it’s also like 50% of your wardrobe and dripping from every square inch of the altar. Even though if you were to ask me what colour I most associate with witchcraft I would say purple or violet right away, if I thought about it for a while my real answer would be blue. Cobalt blue glass is the most popular material for witchy tools in my arsenal. I use so many blue crystals, wear blue clothes, and include symbols of water, evil eyes, peacocks, blue jays, and the night sky- all in varying shades of blue. According to everyone who can see such things, a vibrant primary crayon colour blue is also the dominant colour in my personal aura.
In witchcraft, Blue is the colour of the third eye and associated with psychic power – indigo or dark blue is, more specifically. Light blue is associated with clarity and communication. Darker blues are watery and internal. Light blues are airy and swirling all around us. They’re cool and calm, or they’re deep, and dark, and even sad. In nature blue is… rare as hell. Not to blow your mind here, but blue damn near doesn’t exist in nature and many ancient civilizations had no word for it in their language. A lot of the blue-coloured bits of nature we see don’t actually have a blue pigment, but are structured at the teeny tiny micro level in a way that only allows blue light to be perceived by us. Blue jays aren’t actually blue, you guys. It makes sense then that in magic blue rarely signifies the tangible and absolute, rather it expresses abstract concepts like thought and emotion. Blue is all in our heads, and so it’s the colour we associate with the mind.
This whole BLUE thing is cool, isn’t it? I found this amazing book all about it and it blew my mind:
“Search human history and you’ll quickly conclude that we’ve been enamored of blue at least since the pharaohs. So, it’s startling to turn to the realms of nature and discover that “true” blue is truly rare. Science journalist Kai Kupferschmidt has been fascinated by blue since childhood. In Blue, his quest to understand the science and nature of his favorite color takes him from a biotech laboratory in Japan and a volcanic lake in Oregon to Brandenburg, Germany- home of the last surviving blue-feathered Spix’s macaws. Whether it’s deep underground where blue crystals grow or miles overhead where astronauts gaze down at our “blue marble” planet, wherever we do find Earth’s rarest color, it always has a story to tell.“
Colour is used in all kinds of ways in magic. You choose candle colours that align with the energy you want to raise, the colour of certain botanicals can give you clues to it’s uses, the colours on tarot cards are symbolic, and the colours we choose to adorn ourselves with in ritual affect us energetically. Black or white clothes are spiritually protective, red clothes are physical and vital, green clothes open you up to growth and creation. Also, you probably look great in it which has pretty obvious benefits. Colour can be a major element of your magic, or it can be minor and even accidental. Some are more affected by colour than others, while some cannot even perceive colour and instead see varying shades of grey or brown. Wild!
I’m sure you’ve all seen a list of the magical correspondences associated with each colour like the one bellow. You may also associate the colours with the 7 chakra system and use those correspondences. I do!
In many of the lists I’ve seen, blue was divided into 2 categories – light and dark. The calm, healing, communication blues were light. The dreams, intuition, and meditation blues were dark. Packs of “rainbow” colours chime candles often come with a light and dark blue. I always wondered why every colour didn’t get the same treatment. I mean, pink is technically just light red and it has its own distinct energy separate from its parent colour, but we rarely actually think of pink as “light red”. While most of the colour magic info you found out there focuses solely on these kind of, colour categories, instead of individual shades, those individual shades differ wildly. Pink is associated with the water element. go figure. Red, with fire. Dark and light blues have different elemental associations. And yellow? Some yellow is certainly hot and active like the sun, but when you get into buttercup type yellows the temperature drops and that activity starts to slow. Therefore, yellow is not always solar, not always hot, hell it’s not even always happy. So how do we determine the correspondences of in-between colours? The shades and hues, the warms, and cools, the lights and darks, the spinoffs and sisters?
While a deep cobalt or ultramarine blue will always be my favourite, the blues you may refer to as periwinkle or powder have always grabbed my attention. Mainly because of how subdued they appear, but that somehow makes them stand out even more. The colour is named after the flower (both Vinca major/minor and Catharanthus rosea), which in turn was named from the latin word pervincire which means “to bind”. It grows on a wine that wraps itself around other plants, so this makes sense. The flower symbolizes truth, purity, friendship, and everlasting love. Though in France it has a much more interesting name – Violette des sorciers, or Sorcerer’s Violet.
Periwinkle (Vinca major/minor and Catharanthus rosea)
Other names: Sorcerer’s violet, creeping myrtle,
Chakra: throat and third eye
Uses: binding, recovering memories and past lives, mental clarity, dispelling the evil eye, sweet remembrance, funerals, travelling to and communicating with the underworld, travel protection, fidelity, love, lust, friendship, home harmony, making space in your life for a new relationship
The colour perinwinkle is a light blue with a distinct violet colour to it. I see light blue and a colour like lavender or lilac blended together with a fair bit of white. Despite it being a light colour, it’s not something i could ever describe as pastel, as it has a distinctly smoky feeling to it. There’s a bit of an edge, a grey tone that you can really feel. It does not have them…. well, easter bunny vibes of a pastel blue. There are of course lighter and darker shades of periwinkle, but the graphic above has true periwinkle (hex code #CCCCFF) as its background. Periwinkle is, in my opinion, a liminal blue. It is both night and day, light and dark, blue and purple, clear and cloudy. It’s twilight. It’s no surprise the flower grows in graveyards, as it is walking the line between life and death and affording the same power to the colour that bears its name. So if periwinkle is a blue, a purple, a pink somehow, a light colour, and a smoky shade – how do you determine its magical associations?
You heard me! We need to add the meanings of all the colours, tints, and shades that make up periwinkle blue and set them to the right temperature and… wait, that’s not math.
Colours are often described as either warm or cool. Red is, obviously, a warm colour and blue is, again very obviously, a cool colour. But reds can be cool and blues can be warm, and we’ve already determined that yellows are just all over the damn place. Purple is also not just purple but purple OR violet! Violet is cool because it is more blue, and purple is technically a warm colour with more red. Warm colours, magically, are associated with the physical and active energy. It’s the sun and fire and pumping blood and muscles, and spicy botanicals, and sex. Warm colours are associated with the lower chakras – solar plexus, sacral, and root, which are associated with the material world and our physical bodies. Cool colours have intellectual, emotional, and much less tangible energy. They are mysterious and associated with the depths of the sea and of emotion, the infinite sky filled with stars and the cold nothingness of space, a breezy blue sky, and the altered reality of our dreams in the cold dark night. Our upper chakras are cool colours – the white or violet crown chakra, the indigo third eye, and the sky blue throat and these are the seats of our psychic powers, thoughts, and words. How warm or cool a colour feels to you can tell you a lot about its magical meaning.
Back to Periwinkle
Periwinkle is, most of the time, a cool colour. Though lavender has a warm vibe, when you mix that purple and pink combo with a cool blue it tends to chill out the whole gang. Pink and purple, despite being warm colours, are more associated with the element of water in magic. (just in case you thought you had it– CURVEBALL)
Lavender, as a combination of pink and purple symbolizes enchantment, ethereal beauty, magic, dreams, romance, and inspiration. The elements invoked are water and aether (or spirit)
Blue is also dreamy, like lavender, whether it’s a dark or light colour. Indigo blue is associated with psychic power, magic, the third eye, intuition, and mystery. Light blues are used for healing, communication, self-expression, and dispelling anger or negativity. Darker blues are water-based, and lighter ones are airy – periwinkle has a distinctly airy vibe but is not without emotion.
White is all colours, it is spirit, everything, nothing, anything. We come into a light when we’re born, and walk toward one when we die. White is the element of aether and is usually a cool colour, though not always.
ok NOW we get to the math. We need to add all this together and find the common threads.
Periwinkle blue is a cool colour that can be associated with the elements of water, air, and aether. It can be used to symbolize a connection with spirit, the use of psychic or magic energy, romance, beauty, mental clarity and enhancement, clearing negativity, inspiration, self expression, and communicating emotions effectively.
Despite being an absolute colour nerd, I had not heard of Pantone and their “Color of the Year” selection until about 2 years ago. Pantone is a “color institute” who studies and catalogues colors and of course sells things in those colours. Every year they choose a colour or two that they think the world needs, or that really mirrors current global affairs and emotions. For 2022 they chose a dark periwinkle colour called Very Peri. I say chose, but what I really mean is CREATED. Very Peri is not a colour that has ever been mixed with pigments or in paint or in anything. It’s a colour pantone whipped up in a lab. How wild is that? The idea of creating a colour out of nowhere is so cool to me. Read how pantone describes it, and the meaning they ascribe to it:
“Displaying a carefree confidence and a daring curiosity that animates our creative spirit, inquisitive and intriguing PANTONE 17-3938 Very Peri helps us to embrace this altered landscape of possibilities, opening us up to a new vision as we rewrite our lives. Rekindling gratitude for some of the qualities that blue represents complemented by a new perspective that resonates today, PANTONE 17-3938 Very Peri places the future ahead in a new light.
We are living in transformative times. PANTONE 17-3938 Very Peri is a symbol of the global zeitgeist of the moment and the transition we are going through. As we emerge from an intense period of isolation, our notions and standards are changing, and our physical and digital lives have merged in new ways. Digital design helps us to stretch the limits of reality, opening the door to a dynamic virtual world where we can explore and create new color possibilities. With trends in gaming, the expanding popularity of the metaverse and rising artistic community in the digital space PANTONE 17-3938 Very Peri illustrates the fusion of modern life and how color trends in the digital world are being manifested in the physical world and vice versa.”Pantone.com
Very Peri’s unique warm-toned blue is a mix of periwinkle and a violet-red undertone. Like replacing the lavender in our first mixture with the colour of wine. This colour represents fire, passion, seduction, wealth, magic, courage, regality, and the same otherworldly beauty of lavender. As the colour of wine it’s associated with the energy of hedonism and the sensual pleasure it entails.
When you combine all of these qualities, you get a new shade of blue that has an even more starkly liminal quality. A warm blue, dark but also pale, physical and intuitive. It truly is the colour of twilight when the sun dips below the horizon. I think of that as cat and bat time as those are the animals you see come out to play at twilight when you live in the city.
Very Peri magical colour correspondences: curiosity, carefree confidence, creativity, inspiration, pleasure, transformation, unification of conflicting energies, courage, innovation, uniqueness, enchantment, the spirit world, twilight, cool heads in hot situations, blurring the lines between virtual and reality
Want a tasty way to work with the magic of the colour? Try this Very Peri Herbal Tea featuring Mandarin and Butterfly Pea Flower from Plum Deluxe! Butterfly pea flower produces a vibrant blue tea, but turns purple when lemon juice is added! With apple pieces, sweet blackberry leaf, and rose hips and petals, it invokes the romantic, otherworldly, and attractive magic of periwinkle blue.
You probably won’t find a candle in this colour, but there are a selection of crystals and botanicals in various periwinkle shades.
Celestite and Angelite are different minerals in matching periwinkle colours. Celestite is more translucent and is clear and crisp, and angelite is opaque, which somehow makes this colour seem vibrant. I still remember the first time I saw angelite, I was instantly obsessed with the odd shade of blue. It’s comforting and grounding, while being airy and inspirational. Celestite is my ultimate comfort stone. Whenever I see large clusters or geodes in stores I have this over-whelming urge to touch them. It’s like reaching out and sticking your hands right into the clouds. They’re both, unsurprisingly, associated with angels and other winged beings of light and can be used to communicate with all manner of spiritual entities and energies including spirit guides and ancestors. They can both be used to enhance sleep – angelite helps you fall asleep and celestite helps you stay there, while they both help you communicate across the dream realm.
Blue lace agate and blue calcite are strong throat chakra crystals that aid in eloquence and speaking, and more earthly communication. Blue lace agate is a stone of truth and authentic expression, and can help you share your honest feelings in tough times. Blue calcite is very calming, and large pieces can be placed around the home to bring calming vibes and inspire your home and family to work in harmony.
The first is, of course, actual periwinkle and you can find its magical properties above. But plenty of other flowers with a soft blue-violet colour can be used in spellcraft and ritual.
Chicory (Cichorium intybus) is a weed, and it is also a remarkably interesting plant in magic. Chicory was used in ancient Egypt as part of rituals to bring wealth and success and also to make one invulnerable or even invisible. In Greece and Rome the leaves and flowers were added to salads, and the flowers were added to incense blends for divination and curse breaking. In modern history the roots were used as a coffee substitute in the 1800s, WWI and WWII and is still common in coffee in the southern US. It’s an air element plant ruled by the sun and shares periwinkle’s energy of mental clarity and enhancement and clearing away negative energy and obstacles.
Lavender and Lilac pay homage to periwinkle’s purple undertones. Lavender is an air element plant ruled by mercury that’s pretty universally handy in magic. It’s healing, cleansing, protective, romantic, mystical, and relaxing. Lilac has a much shorter growing season and essential oil can’t be extracted from the flowers so it has a much rarer quality to it. It’s aligned with the element of aether, or spirit, opens the crown chakra, clears the aura, and aligns the chakras. The scent is great for inducing psychic states and prophetic dreams. Lavender can be used to cleanse spaces, yourself, your mind and Lilac takes on the more esoteric cleansing. Clarifying and magical – just like periwinkle.
If you really want to dive right into the psychic waters of periwinkle, I have 2 more flowers to recommend – the egyptian blue lotus (Nymphaea cearulea) and morning glory (Ipomoea). Both flowers are very low-key entheogens and have been for centuries. The lotus, obviously, dates back to ancient Egypt and is depicted in most of the remaining artwork and writing we have from that time. It’s meditative and psychic, and in ancient Egypt was also revered as an aphrodisiac. Interestingly, it does have chemical compounds that work to elevate blood pressure, which could have “viagara like” uses. They would soak it into a wine to get the effect. As far as we know, it’s also the fruit eaten by the Lotus Eaters in the Odyssey – a people who are so drunk on the fruit of the lotus that they forget the real world and focus solely on pleasure. It has a calming effect but also symbolizes connection between people and between people and the gods. Morning Glory is one of my favourites, I have to admit. It grows on big vines that get a lot of flowers, and the leaves are this vibrant green and shaped like a heart. The flowers open every morning with the sun and close at night – much like the lotus and chicory. The mild psychedelic present in the seeds is called LSA and is a close cousin to LSD or acid. Ingesting enough seeds to actually get the psychedelic effect is honestly unpleasant and not recommended at all unless you enjoy vomiting. Its historical use as an entheogen lends it energy of meditation and psychic connection. It’s a symbol of mystery and magic. A common thread it shares with the periwinkle flower is it’s use in binding spells! The vines of morning glories can be tied around a poppet or candle to bind a person or their actions, or to bind two people together romantically. The flowers can help facilitate astral travel and prophetic dreams, and even be used as a protection talisman for regular travel.
A few other flowers that may help you connect with periwinkle energy are hydrangeas, wisteria, and butterfly pea flowers.
There’s no denying that blue is an incredibly magical hue. Whether it’s a deep ultramarine extracted from lapis lazuli, or a soft and bright periwinkle flower, it reaches inside and guides us toward mystery, magic and innovation. These last two years really have been
unprecidented fucked up and weird, and a lot has changed. Even if you contined working through the pandemic, even if you never felt trapped at home, even if you denied the pandemic is real you cannot deny that the world as we know it has changed, become something new. It’s only fitting them at a brand new colour should represent 2022, and I’m excited to see what magic I can make in a very peri year where up is down, dark is light, and blue is the newest warm colour.
Fun fact: when very peri was announced I thought it looked EXACTLY like the blue in the artwork for Witchcraft for Emotional Wisdom. It turns out they are different AND that this colour is actually called RHYTHM. I love it!