Combinations for Color Affection and Life on Sundays

A couple weeks ago, I started knitting the “Life on Sundays” shawl by Veera Välimäki. Like so many other knitters I’d heard about, I fell down the same hole… choosing colours for the shawl. We now dye over 70 colourways, 44 of which are semi-solid… so it’s possible to make a gazillion awesome combinations, but so hard to choose just one! I settled on a couple colours that I love to look at: Bison and Espresso.

But I get asked to make colour combinations for Veera’s Color Affection shawl all the time for shops and other knitters. Just wandering through the studio today, I picked a couple combinations from Tough Love Sock and CashLuxe Fine that we just have on-hand right now. The possibilities are endless. Here, I’ve put together three combos: generally using one neutral (like Espresso, Bison or Tumbled Stone), then adding a medium contrast colour (like Ginger or Woodland) and then adding a dark or “pop” colour (like Coastal, Riptide, or Grape Jelly). If you remember your colour theory, you’ll know that juxtaposing complementary colours can make each of the colours pop more. So putting an orange gold next to a blue will make both appear stronger. Or green with red, or yellow with purple, etc. Erin Slonaker at pepperknit has knit a great example of using two neutral colours (like Silver and Slate or Charcoal) and a bright pop colour (like Pistachio). It’s a great way to use a bright colour without feeling like you’ll be overwhelmed by it.

And here are just a couple two-colour combinations that would work for Veera’s Life on Sundays shawl: 1) a neutral (Espresso) + a chromatic colour (Coastal), 2) two analogous colours (blues and greens, Riptide and Woodland), and 3) somewhat complementary combination (Ginger and Coastal).

In my mind, I’m also pairing up Wisteria and Bison, Goldmine and Blackberry, or Lucky and Lettuce Wrap. What combinations have you knit? And it’s Friday… what are you knitting this weekend? I’m hoping I can find enough time to finish my shawl before Fibres West next weekend, but it’s more likely that you’ll find me knitting on it at the booth. Happy Friday, happy knitting.