I’m someone that has always stuck to safe color combinations when it comes to knitting.
I usually stay in the same color family, or choose similar colors. My eyes naturally gravitate toward cooler shades, and since I’ve always loved blues, purples, and pinks when it comes to yarn (especially together), almost everything I made was in one of those three colors.
Until recently, that is.
All throughout college, I hardly had time to knit at all. Here and there I’d work on a few rows or throw something quick together when I needed a moment to do something other than homework (and was sick of having the internet as a distraction), but up until last summer and fall, I’d been through a knitting drought. Not for lack of any desire to knit, of course, but instead as a matter of necessity. School and classwork came first, and as much as I wanted to spend hours knitting, I just couldn’t.
Well, now, I’ll spend hours at a time knitting. A day in which I don’t spend at least a little time knitting is a day wasted, in my opinion. There are so many things that you can do simultaneously: watch television or a movie, listen to a book on CD (I’ve yet to master the “reading an actual book while knitting at the same time” technique), drive (if you’re not behind the wheel, of course), even go out for coffee with a friend (but only if it’s a mindless knitting project, of course - we don’t need our friends getting annoyed with us for looking at a pattern or chart after every row). And since I spend so much time knitting so many different things, I now have plenty of time to try out different color combinations.
I used to think that everything HAD to match, that staying within a color family was the only way to make something not look like a five-year-old threw it together. But that was before I became more involved in the online world of knitting and knitting patterns, where I discovered the creativity of so many different people. Colors that I never would have combined looked fantastic together. And it took me watching “What Not to Wear” to understand why the things I made before these discoveries of color all looked nice, but didn’t have any POP:
Not everything has to match; it just has to go.
I can’t even tell you how many times I had heard this while watching that show (okay, okay - yes, I watch more reality television than I ever care to admit publicly), but I had NEVER thought to relate it to knitting, which allows me to create things, rather than just outfits. My color designs are always a work in progress, but I love when I can create something that’s unique and visually pleasing.
If you’re interested in learning a little bit more about color coordination: here’s a link to a really good infographic: The Art of Color Coordination. It pertains more to designing websites, but the color science is the same no matter what.