Weave in Some Color

I don't know about you, but color is one of the most inspiring things to me. Whether it's knitting, clothes, home decor, gardening, or just about anything, really, color is a big part of the choices I make.

A lovely woven swatch. I really like the blue/red/yellow combo. This would be perfect for place mats because my dining room chairs are blue!

I find that my love of some colors waxes and wanes, too. I didn't used to be a big fan of blue, but now I love it in almost all forms. Especially teals and peacock blues. Orange is a big favorite, too. I was at Nordstrom yesterday and there were so many different shoe options in orange (or as the salesperson called it, "tangerine").

As knitters, we are blessed with thousands of different color knitting options in the yarn we use. Handwoven editor Anita Osterhaug writes about color in a wonderful editor's letter in the May/June 2013 issue.

Color is at the heart of what we weave. Color is science, and it is art. It depends on myriad factors: the qualities of light, the chemistry of materials, the textures of yarn and fabric surfaces, the adjacent colors, and the eye of the beholder. Color theory has fixed rules, and yet it is subjective and deeply personal.

Colors evoke memories of holidays, seasons, people, and places. Studies have shown that colors in our environment can affect our moods, and the colors we choose to wear can telegraph our moods to others.

In weaving, our choice of colors can make an otherwise simple project spectacular or it can disappoint, leaving the weaver feeling that costly materials and hours of work were wasted. (This is an especially high risk if you are an off-road weaver like me—one who loves a puzzle and takes project instructions as mere guidelines. Writer Garrison Keillor once said that intelligence is like 4-wheel drive: it just gets you stuck in more interesting places.)

Over my years of fiber arts, I've read loads of good books and taken plenty of excellent classes on color theory, fiber blending, dyeing, etc., but the biggest thing I've learned about color selection is that there is never one right answer.

—Anita Osterhaug, Handwoven, May/June 2013

Weaving is a craft I aspire to learn. I love the idea of using yarn from my stash to create scarves, bookmarks, placemats, towels, and so on. I'm thinking about the colors I'll use as I write this. The options are limitless! I've talked about taking weaving classes before, and I haven't yet, but I will! There's a shop here in Spokane that offers weaving classes and sells beginner looms.

It looks like so much fun! And I'll need a subscription to Handwoven, too. If you want to try weaving, check out Handwoven today and get inspired!


P.S. Let's do a favorite color roll-call! Leave a comment and tell us your favorite color and the color of your latest finished project.

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