It’s been a while since I have written a new post on my blog. I have started a few but wasn’t happy with them and I find even though I do enjoy writing, coming up with a topic that will be interesting can prove difficult. So any suggestions are most welcome.
So I have decided to write about something I love...colour. This isn’t a post about the technical aspects of colour, nor is about looking at colour wheels etc. Its about how I decide, use and enjoy colours, how I put them together, what influences my choice.
I’m lucky that I have natural instinct for colour , I just seem to know what colours look good together. If the shade or hue isn’t right I spot it straight away. Its hard to describe how I know it isn’t right, I think the best description I can come up with is that I feel “unsettled” if the colours are wrong.
One of my favourite things about weaving is being able to blend colours, the more the better.
This wrap is a good example of what I mean. I used over 10 different random colourways in this as well as solid colours. It was all done by eye, with no pre planning. I never plan the order of colours or the size of the stripes. I design as I am winding the warp and use my eye. Occasionally, once I have the warp on the loom something will jump out at me and look not quite right, and then its just a simple matter of adding in some more threads before I start threading the warp.
Selling to the public through my studio has its challenges when it comes to having a good range of colourways. I’ve had to learn to step out of my colour comfort zone and design and work with colourways that don’t appeal to me at all. These two scarfs below are both in the most difficult colour I find to weave with…salmon pink. Its not a colour I dye or wear, but to my surprise they both turned out pretty well and sold quite quickly!
Designing different colour ways all the time and also dyeing colours, I do sometimes get stuck…it’s like having writers block. I guess you could call it a colour block! When this happens I have a few “go to” books that I just browse through and look for ideas and inspiration. It also makes me happy looking at gorgeous colours.
Two of my favourite books are by the fabric designer and decorator Tricia Guild. I just love the way she uses so many different colours and patterns in the one room.
I never think there is a “wrong” colour combination. Nature does a fine job of combining colours and sometimes the only thing you need to do to be inspired is go for a walk and look around you.
One trick that I use to see if colours are all compatible, is to get all the threads I want to use, then twist them together. If one stands out more than other it is usually either the wrong shade or hue. If you are unsure just squint while looking at them and the odd one out will usually be obvious.
Never be afraid to play with colour, try different colours together…even in the clothes you wear! When you feel comfortable in the colours you are wearing, well that is the colour for you.
Colour makes us happy.