The Stylecraft Blogstars have so much knowledge and experience between them. We have decided to let them take over our blog from time to time, so that they can share some of their tips with you. The first is Angela Armstrong from Get Knotted Yarn Craft with some fantastic ideas about colour. Over to you, Angela.
One of the most common complaints or issues that I see in the yarn world is colour. People begging for colour help, or swooning over other people’s work and wishing that they had such good colour sense.
I’m writing this post to tell you that it is not as hard as you think, in fact YOU HAVE AN AWESOME EYE FOR COLOUR!
That’s right, you heard me, you do! It’s much more likely that your issue is confidence in your choices and that you are unaware of your awesome potential.
It’s going to be OK, because I’m going to give you some fabulous tips and tools to help you out. So, let’s get started.
Top five tips to easy colour inspiration.
- Open your wardrobe and take a look. If you’re anything like me, you stick to a range of safe colours. That’s perfectly fine. Pick your favourite one, even if it’s black. Now, go to your browser and search for “[insert your colour here] and colour geometric patterns”.
For example: green and geometric patterns.
Now switch to image results and start scrolling. They may be all monochromatic to start with, but as you keep going you will find variations and combinations that you would never dream of.
- Look around your house. You have surrounded yourself with things that you like. So, look more closely at them.
The pattern on your grandmother’s China cup, the Lilliput Lane cottage, the print or painting on your wall, your carpet, throw/rugs, cushions and even your favourite coffee mug and fridge magnet.
You have been making bold and enlightened colour choices for years without realising it!
- Look in a catalogue. Even if it’s just groceries. Advertising agencies and marketing gurus spend millions on developing brand and colour recognition. So take a leaf out of their book and use their researched ideas. That cereal box that has too much sugar has a great combination.
- ‘The thing I’m making is for my great uncle John who is a real curmudgeon and his house is a mish mash of colour and design’, you wail.
OK, look at what he wears. Jackets, cardigans, socks, ties even his glasses frame. Pick the two most common colours, even if it’s black and grey, you can still work with that.
Choose a third colour to give him joy, some corner of his soul will appreciate it. It doesn’t have to be lurid pink, it can be subtle like gold or cream.
- If it’s a commission or mystery gift and you’re given a single colour, you’re way ahead of the game. Try and get the person to be specific. Fire engine red, cornflower blue, or the same purple as that dress that actress wore on the red carpet.
Go to your favourite yarn brand (Stylecraft of course, lol) and look at their purple shades. If you have a specific shade you can match, awesome. But if you’re worried about being off enough to clash, then look at contrasting colours using the tools below.
- Colour calculator
Once you have a basic colour, it’s time to get the other shades. There are some great sites out there that can teach you about colour theory and harmonics, but if you don’t have time or aren’t inclined, this site is for you;
You choose the colour on the wheel, the depth or intensity on the bar beside it, and then you can choose what kind of accompaniment you wish – opposite, harmonic, contrasting etc. It then gives you the ideas for the right shades
- Design Seeds
If you have no constraints and are simply looking for a palette, then you cannot go past this fabulous site. The designer takes gorgeous photos and then analyses them to show the palette contained. Just go look, it’s well worth it.
- Granny Square Colours
Now, now, bear with me. It doesn’t have to be a square. You’re looking at how rounds of colour work together. So if it’s a granny square, a detailed square, a Mandala, a doll, whatever. You can use this tool to show you how to mix it up and what different versions look like.
(Firenze Afghan Block by Julie Yeager, images sourced from Ravelry)
(Sourced from Granny Square app using 7 colours)
- Random Stripe Generator
This is a seriously awesome tool. I’ve used it for bedspreads, shawls, gloves and a jacket concept design. You’re only limited by your stash.
This is another tool that you can fool around with for ages and never hit the same combination twice. Plug in your colours and the maximum stripe width and off you go!
There you are, a swag of ideas and tools to equip you to shine with your own inner awesomeness. Seriously, the only thing holding you back, is you!
So, go on, get knotted. I mean get knotting.