Colour is energy that surrounds us in every aspect of our lives. Our auras and bodies are no different. Colour is wired into the very fibre of our being and, likewise, our environment, planet and universe. So, it makes sense that the colour of our homes, clothes, artwork, food and nature affects us in different ways. Each chakra energy centre in our body is associated with colour and while fairly consistent, even these vary according to myriad philosophies. (For more on chakras, read the first feature in this colour series from November 2018: What Are Chakras and Chakra Colours. As designers at Serenvida, we use every hue, tint, shade, tone and value of colour in our work, but also focus on 14 key colours based on our holistic learning, mentors and experience.
What comes to mind when you picture emerald? For many, emerald sings of kings and courtiers. Undoubtedly, it is an aristocrat stone, with the same regal nature as cobalt, ultramarine or sapphire blue. With its piercing, deep green colour, alluring energy and mineral properties, it is hardly surprising that wherever emerald has been discovered, it has been highly prized. The ancient Egyptians, South Asians, Central and South Americans were fortunate to find ample emerald to mine. Cleopatra was, purportedly, a great admirer of this precious stone, as were high Aztec priests and the conquering Conquistadors who discovered native stashes of emerald. Later the Mughal Emperor Jehangir’s favourite wife gifted him a beloved emerald cup.
Likewise Jehangir’s son Shah Jahan was enamoured by jade — also included here though a far lighter value — for its pale, greeney-blue colouring that sits on the emerald spectrum more than it does in spring green or turquoise though there are notes of the latter. In between emerald and jade, sit countless green variations of deep, dark and mysterious like forest, racing, Persian, brighter malachite, and a few closer to the paler qualities of jade-based tints.
Apart from its countless royal admirers, emerald has its own specific energy signature. In Victoria Finlay’s historic tome, Colour, she explains, “By the late twentieth century, red pillar boxes had become so symbolic of Britain that when Hong Kong reverted to China in 1997, post office employees were out on the streets within days, repainting the post boxes in a new livery of emerald green and purple. Somehow the new coat of paint was a gentle symbol of the end of empire.” Interestingly, emerald is literally a breath of fresh air: providing new space, a new place and new strategy: how apt for the occasion, though not necessarily an indicator of optimism in that particular situation.
In contrast, using emerald or its brethren in an interior scheme will bring in those wonderful aspects. Combine black and white checkerboard tiling with emerald; emerald or dark forest and white chevrons with black borders; a decadently rich emerald with gilt mirrors or gold frames; or veer towards discordant by adding malachite or a teal within the furnishings. It seems like an odd pairing but works as a sophisticated ensemble. On the other end of the spectrum, pair jade with rose for faded elegance or jade with flamingo or salmon and hints of dark forest or pine in a more flirtatious tropical vein. After all, pink with green is a well-loved combo. However, one of our favourite, strikingly bold combinations is all about empowered contrast — emerald or malachite with burnt orange – a bold exhale allowing emergence with inspiration and creativity. Fabulous!
Emerald is associated with the thymus chakra and thymus gland, the seat of the immune system. Here lies the upper chest and collarbone leading out to the pectoral muscles, where, if left unchecked, strain can take hold. Emerald releases the ‘tightness’ of the chest, brings oxygen where it is lacking and emphasises the power of the breath. It begs for calm, for slow, considered breathing and space. New mothers often require the emerald frequency to restore a sense of themselves, while those with stress or sense of overcrowding can visualise the colour emerald while physically expanding the chest, releasing the pecs and shoulders and stretching outwards. Emerald invites spaciousness in, lateral thinking and a new direction. It is oxygen, the very air we breathe and, metaphorically, freedom for the lungs. At its simplest, emerald can come in the form of dark, leafy, large plants to replenish the air, or a walk in the woods. After all, what is more elemental than the oxygen provided to us by mother earth via foliage and forests?
So, when things are too overwhelming and the frenetic pace of life impedes, look to the emerald frequency for clearing, space and a fresh lease of life. Slow breath in…… and long, expansive exhale out: just do it, and do it often!
Disclaimer: The information in this feature is not a substitute for medical advice. It is a description of the energetic frequency of colour and how colour can be integrated into one’s life along with regular routine. As such, Serenvida takes no responsibility for any ailments, issues or otherwise. We are designers and consultants using the power of colour to enhance and uplift spaces. Please seek the advice of a GP or specialist for any medical queries or complaints.
Emerald copy for photos: Kate Wilding. Feature copy: Manisha Harkins. Photos: © Christine Taylor and Serenvida. Designs: All © Serenvida unless otherwise stated.
With a strong instinct for colour and over 20 years of combined design experience (design, prop styling, vintage design retail, design journalism), Kate Wilding and Manisha Harkins launched Serenvida Ltd, their intuitive colour and textile design company. Both are trained textile designers who have exhibited at New Designers London and at the Cardiff Festival of Wellbeing. They love to use the specific energy of colour to encourage holistic living. Qualified in colour therapy and energy practices, they’ll guide your colour and pattern choices/mood or style direction for a space or project; or guide your friends and colleagues in an intuitive workshop. Serenvida provides colour remedies suited to a client’s needs, happily bridging the gap between design and intuition in the process. You’ll find them at www.serenvida.co.uk and write to them at firstname.lastname@example.org