Think of your stash as a paintbox
03/21/2017                       #701
Color choices can be a deeply personal part of the knitting process.
Sometimes we want exactly what we see in the pattern—and this is especially true in patterns that use a lot of colors. But other times we want to change up the colors just a bit. This process can be daunting, but there are ways to make sure that you love your color choices for any project. 

Emily has a great blog post about choosing colors, and as she points out, "Colors work off of one another. They reflect light in different ways and when worn on the body, bring out different qualities. White yarns reflect light. Intricate stitch patterns show up beautifully in lighter yarns whereas they can become lost in very dark yarns." So it's important to consider how the colors play together when changing up colors. 

A couple of months ago I wrote a blog post about choosing colors specifically for stranded colorwork projects. It all centers around color values, or how dark or light the colors appear when they’re stripped of their hues. In color theory, “value” refers to how deep or light a color is; “hue” is the color itself. When choosing colors for stranded knitting, you want a balance of values. 

This idea works not only for stranded colorwork but also any project where the colors stripe together and blend a bit, such as the Caledonia ruana knit in Berroco Cotolana™. Caledonia is a great mix of neutrals, but it's also a great blank canvas for experimenting with color choices.
In the original pattern, we used #3506 Sycamore for the main color (MC), then worked in #3501 White Pine (CC1) with just a hint of #3510 Maple (CC2).
You can see in these swatches how color play can change things up. This swatch keeps #3506 Sycamore as the main color, but changes CC1 to #3503 Birch, and swaps in #3535 Witch Hazel for CC2. 
Here we've got #3570 Willow for MC and #3523 Balsam as CC1; while keeping #3535 Witch Hazel as CC2. These colors are great on their own, but they play with each other in different ways.
Here are a few more alternative color choices for Caledonia.
#3524 Cypress (MC), #3570 Willow (CC1), and #3515 Madder (CC2)
#3501 White Pine (MC), #3548 Hawthorn (CC1), and #3510 Maple (CC2)
#3524 Cypress (MC), #3560 Sumac (CC1), and #3501 White Pine (CC2)
Download This Week's Free Pattern
This week's free pattern also offers a great opportunity to play with colors. The Ostro Shawl is knit in three shades of Berroco Fiora® using a modular construction. Each "shell" is knit individually, but the following shells are attached as you go, so there is minimal finishing. This shawl is shown in Georgia, Tybee, and Raleigh, but why not try Sanibel, Elberta, and Auburn? Or maybe Florence, Augusta, and Cornelia? Plenty of possibilities!
How do you go about choosing colors for your projects? Let us know on Facebook how you choose colors! 

Happy knitting,


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