Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Teaching Fun!

On Sunday, July 13th, I had 8 students in my class at Yarns by the Sea in Aptos, CA.
Most were new to inkle weaving, and one just needed a refresher.
The shop carries some good yarns for inkle weaving and students selected various different ones.

Carole, who was just taking the class as a refresher, chose this cotton yarn with a bit of sparkle.
It is enough sparkle to add a fun element, but not enough to overwhelm.

Stella chose this "Ty-Dy" yarn from Knit One, Crochet Too. Because of the variegated yarn, she didn't have to be bothered with charting the pattern, so while the rest of the students were doing this, she warped and started weaving.

At the end of the class, she cut her piece off the loom and wrapped it on! 

Stella took the class along with her mom, Sandy. They borrowed a loom and when I went to pick it up 5 days later, I found that Stella had woven a few more pieces. I think she likes it!

The "Sassy Skein" yarn was popular with the class. It comes in fantastic bright colors.

Sara, a shop employee, was happy to learn a new craft. She studied a bit on the internet the night before. Her first piece went very well.

By the time I saw her 5 days later, she was working on this pickup pattern, her second piece.

Michelle showed up at class with a pattern she liked, chosen from one of my blog posts
She showed me that she had saved it on her phone. She chose a nice cotton and it will become trim on a Medieval tunic for her son who is involved in the SCA

It was great to work with Yarns by the Sea and  they like the idea of adding weaving to their repertoire. Next up: a rigid heddle class with Deborah Jarchow. See details here: http://www.yarnsbythesea.com/events.php

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Plain Weave Color Strategy - Analogous Designs

When choosing colors that look good together consider using those found next to
 each other on the color wheel, or analogous colors. 
These are often seen together in nature and tend to be pleasing to the eye. 
In the strap below, I used a burgundy red for the background and a progression of light to dark colors for the pattern. These started with light yellow in the center, 
then golden yellow, orange and red. 

This is one of my very rare asymmetrical designs. It also starts with light yellow in the center and moves through golden yellow, orange, hot pink and burgundy red. Then I framed it all up with  very unequal border stripes of black on both sides.  

Black is a color that I often use for borders as it just seems to give the 
right effect for framing many designs.
Here I've chosen red-violet, blue-violet and purple for the pattern. There is one single stripe of rayon along both edges just inside the black border. The rayon, while very similar in color to the lighter violet used in the center, reflects light in a totally different way
 than the other cotton yarns, providing a neat shimmery effect.

In the strap below, dark blue provides the background for a light to dark progression of blue and violet stripes. I found this one very soothing and satisfying. 

 This website is very concise with it's descriptions of the color wheel, color terms, and description of basic color schemes. http://www.tigercolor.com/color-lab/color-theory/color-theory-intro
I find it very helpful to have something like this to refer to.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Inkle Weaving Color Strategy- Monochromatic

Here's where you need to have a good color selection of yarns at your fingertips.
If you can take one color and use several shades or tints of it, you can get nice results.
Monochromatic is defined as a color scheme using one base hue and its shades, tones and tints.
Tints come from adding white, tones from adding gray and shades from adding black.
This color wheel  gives you an idea of what these combinations might look like.

In both of the following designs, I've used a monochromatic theme with 3 tints/shades of the same hue.

For the strap below I used yellow-green (or chartreuse) and two shades of it. 
The shades are dark and light olive.

And below is yet another green strap, this one uses a medium green with a lighter tint and a darker shade. 

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Color Value in Inkle Weaving

Sometimes, there are those colors which I think look so good together when the skeins are lying next to each other. Then I weave them up into a design which falls flat. I've done this a few times and finally was able to put into words what happened. Not enough contrast in color values!
Below are two photos of a group of yarns, Kertzer Butterfly, purchased from Handknitting.com . It comes in a beautiful range of colors!! It's classified as a DK weight and good for weaving straps.

Look what happens if I edit my photo and put it into black and white mode. 
Now I can begin to see the color values rather than the colors themselves. This is a good trick!

Here is one of those beautiful color combinations which really didn't work together in the strap. Oh, if I had only looked at them together in black and white first, I would have seen why. I warped, wove and didn't like it, so I took the whole warp off and added black into the design. It helped, but it is still not a really strong design, in my opinion. If you look at the black and white version, you see that the pretty blue, turquoise and teal are just not different enough to give the design any pop. 

In this one, the black and white version shows little value contrast between some of the colors. In fact, some of them completely disappear. But, due to the radical difference of the chartreuse and fuchsia, it still works. 

One of the reasons why I think the guitar strap pattern below works so well is that it has high value contrast in addition to having opposites on the color wheel, red and green. 

Here are a few helpful resources for learning about colors and their interaction:
http://paletton.com/  Endless hours of fun! Intended for web design, but good anyway.
A Fiber Artist's Guide to Color by Laura Bryant   Although, I didn't buy the DVD,
 the 2-minute promo for it will give you some clues!
Joen Wolfrom teaches color interaction in quilting, but gives really good info.
 I really like her book, Colorplay.    

Also, I just learned that there are glasses with red lenses made just for quilters and fiber artists which help you sort materials by color value. You can buy them here:  Nancy's Notions