A Question of Color

Filed in Point of View by on January 15, 2014 6 Comments

In my observations over the years, knitters generally fall into two categories: textural knitters or color knitters. This is one of the places Kellie and I are different. Although we enjoy techniques on both sides of the textural knitting vs. colorful knitting divide, I tend to be attracted to texture and Kellie leans more toward color.


I have to believe that this is at least in part due to Kellie’s amazing ability to see through the lens of a camera and all that is in there. But I also believe that it has something to do with our natural gifts. Some folks have a much better sense of color than the rest of us. Color has never been my strong suit, but I was able to learn.

What I discovered years ago is that you can train yourself to see color (assuming you don’t actually have color blindness). Part of the key is actually learning to “see” color all around you. Particularly the subtleties that exist in nature. For example, plants are not green, they are a multitude of various shades of green.


I also learned to assess the colors that naturally attract me. Hand-dyed yarns or rovings may draw you in, but what is it about the combination of colors that you find attractive? Is is bright colors? Strongly contrasting colors? Or subtle combinations that sit closely on the color wheel? By mimicking what I enjoyed in other dyers’ work I was able to create color combinations that met my color needs.

What I also have learned over time is that you do not have to engage in complex knitting to make good use of color. Although I truly appreciate the beauty in a well-designed fair isle sweater, I also appreciate the simplicity of interesting stripes. And of course, as a textural knitter, I love adding in a few purls or cables just to liven up the color a bit more.

So my question to you is, where do you fall in the textural knitting vs. colorful knitting (friendly) debate? Are you a texture knitter or a color knitter? If you are a texture knitter, what aspects of color do you find intimidating? If you are a color knitter, which is your favorite technique and why?



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