Saturday, July 07, 2007

In order to keep my knitting balanced, I like to have some very easy, very portable projects going while I'm working on something that requires more attention.
The current easy portable projects are some Regia socks and a solid, stockinette st vest from my handspun.

When you think your spinning is getting pretty good, there's nothing like knitting with it to show you all its faults. I'll still love the vest this fall when the weather cools off.

I did make a bit more progress on the Fair Isle in the last few days:

When I give it the time and attention, it goes pretty quickly. Thanks for all the compliments on the last post. Since you asked about how I choose colors for a complex project, I'll ramble a bit on that topic.

First of all, as you probably know, I have a ridiculously large stash. So when I get in mind to make a new fair isle color scheme, I start with the yarn I already own and see what happens. If I'm knitting for myself, I usually want to choose colors from the warmer tones. I have very pink undertones in my skin and tend to look like a flushed inebriate if I choose the wrong undertones. So, even the blues and greens I like tend to have a warm cast to them. Sometimes I'll want to work with a particular color or group of colors and need to audition some others to round out the palette. This is where it gets interesting. Sometimes the color I was trying to build a garment around gets eliminated from the line-up. Sometimes a group I think look smashing together in the balls or hanks just don't work in little knitted stitches. I personally tend to be happier with a color scheme when there's something that fights a little bit in it. Not so much as an outright clash, but something that gives it a bit of spark. Which means that even though I think an understanding of color theory is helpful, ultimately it's about choosing what works for you and going with it. After all, when you look around at the natural world, you find any and all colors existing near one another and some of those random collisions of color don't "go" at all, but are a joy to behold. Check my archives for October 2006 for some old posts about choosing colors.

Here's a day lily from the yard:

Finally, Owen got a hamster yesterday. See her picture
here. Her name is Susie Suzy.


Jerry & Maxy said...

Susie is adorable! How do the cats like her? Groovy f.i.

Batty said...

Beautiful work! I also try to keep some easy knitting handy at all times, just in case the brain needs a break.

I think having a color that 'fights' a little bit is important, and something I've done wrong in the past. That little bit of contrast draws your attention and makes the garment look interesting. Without it... boring. I picked out some yarn for a pattern I liked, and I forgot to choose a color that's just a bit different. When I looked at my swatch, I wanted to yawn. So thanks for the excellent advice!

Bezzie said...

...which would explain why your fair isle "sparkles" to me. Collisiony but not clashy.

What kind of hamster is that? It doesn't look like the chubby ones I had as a kid.

dale-harriet said...

OH, cheers to Owen for his new companion! I adore little hammies (at least on Cute Overload). Evangeline looked at Susie's picture and said "Adooorammmmmble"! I don't think I'll get her one of her own.

Kathy Kathy Kathy said...

Suzy's nose is very pink. Collisiony/clashy coloration is very popular in sock yarn right now.I like collisiony colors, too. I'm less into clashy lately I think the not "going together" gives a piece movement. I like a little movement in a design. I suspect most people do and that is why cables and other twisted stitches are popular.

knitaly said...

The true color-hunter you are fears not when she finds a clashing note, but builds up a symphony around it! :)

Zonda said...

Yes, good to have a mindless knit, as I call it! The Fair Isle Cardi is looking so good! :)

Carol said...

Thanks for the advice on color diving! Suzy looks like a darling, I'm a sucker for little furry ones :)

MollyBeees said...

Gorgeous knitting. I think your hand spun is da bomb! What don't you like about it. Welcome Suzy!!!

Terby said...

Nice rodent.

I'm in a constant battle between filling my plate with simple, mindless knits that I know I will wear, and complex, interesting, engaging knits that are entertaining but probably won't get much use. You seem to have a good sense of balance in that regard.

I'm still incredibly taken by the blue handspun.

Rebel said...

That fair-isle is coming along nicely - and what a pretty day lily - zuma