Saturday, May 24, 2008


A tile from my ceramics days.

How do you pick out colors for your clothing projects? I've been thinking about this a lot lately. As someone who has done a lot of sculpture, I tend to fall in love with shapes, textures, and other structural aspects while color is more of an afterthought. When I did a lot of work in the ceramics studio, for example, I would often dread glazing my artwork. The colors could be unpredictable at times, and I was so nervous that I would ruin all of the hard work I put into sculpting the clay. Now that I've gotten into sewing and knitting clothing for myself, I find that I'm still a bit wary of color. I realized that for my current sweater--Joy, I picked out a color (purple) that I don't have much of in my wardrobe. While in some ways this is a very logical way to choose a color, I think it would make more sense to pick out a color that I know looks great on me. The thing is, I'm not sure I've ever really given much thought to what colors look good on me. I tend to love neutrals, or pseudo-neutral colors. These aren't thrilling to knit with, but would make a much more versatile finished product. I also realized that I was avoiding knitting too many sweaters in the same color, since this seemed like a silly thing to do--but really, who cares? I can have five different gray sweaters--as long as that makes me happy. I've been taking note of the projects I love on Ravelry, and their colors. Often, a simple, plain color can be just the right thing to highlight the lovely lines of a particular pattern. Here are some examples of my recent favorites [ravelry links]:

katiehellon's flair
winterwren's short sleeved tunic
zeitgeistyarns' herringbone sweater
siggasif's gradient
gotiks' silver streak
olgajazzy's camel silk jacket


Sara said...

wow, i really love the silver streak vest.

i also have only dark neutrals in my closet, i always think they will go with more things when i purchase them, but then i end up wishing i had more colorful things to wear. i bought a bright orange wool blazer this winter and get compliments everytime i wear it now. of course now its always suits for work, but im goign to try to at least mix in some more colorful shirts.

Anonymous said...

I'm the opposite - when it comes to clothing I am much more aware of colour than shape. But still a bit cautious if I'm making it for myself - I usually pick colours that I know will suit me (ie the same colours as something I already own), because too many times I have put in all the effort to make something and then found the colour doesn't work. Doubly cautious when it comes to knitting, because it takes much more work to knit something.

Agree that sometimes things are more successful if they have either colour or shape, not both.

I want to get more colour in my wardrobe though - it's all very grey and black and white.

lorrwill said...

I pick out colors by 1 what I am comfortable wearing and 2 what will go with other things I already own.

A bit boring I know but it beats buying something (yarn, fabric, etc.) then never never making anything out of it.