Fibreside Chat Andrea Rangel – P. 2

November 15th, 2023 Blog 0

Always fascinated with the variety of creative paths one can follow, we started to ask our collaborators, to share their experiences on our blog.

We are delighted to host this special blog post series with knitwear designer, Andrea Rangel. Andrea is the author of two fantastic stitch dictionaries and we asked her a few questions about choosing colours for colourwork project to share with you.

Different dye techniques have an impact on colour. How to consider that when choosing colours for a colorwork project?

Yarns may be completely solid, semi-solid, heathered, variegated, or even speckled. For bold, clean colourwork, solid colours are ideal. Heathered yarns work in a similar way, though I find them to be a little earthier. Semi-solid yarns create less crisp colourwork patterns, but they offer beautiful layers of richness and depth. They give a more watercolour look than solids, which I find enticing, but it’s definitely a different look and the pattern won’t be quite as clear.

When using variegated yarns, I like to choose a contrasting colour that doesn’t include any of the shades or values featured in the variegated yarn. That can make choosing yarns a little bit more difficult, especially if your variegated yarn is very colourful or has a bunch of light and dark values. But if some of the shades and values in the variegated yarn match the contrast colour, you’ll have spots where your pattern disappears.

That can be artsy and a valid creative choice! Just be purposeful so that you’re not disappointed by the result. To get the best out of variegated yarns, I suggest choosing a variegated colourway that’s pretty much all light or all dark and a contrast colour that’s the opposite.

Speckled yarn can also be very fun to play with in colourwork, but keep in mind that if the speckles are the same shade or value as your contrast colour, you’ll probably have spots where the pattern is less distinguishable. 

You have a new book, KnitOvation Stitch Dictionary, out – Congratulations!

Can you tell us more about the new swatches made for this project? How do they relate and complement the swatches made for your previous book – AlterKnit Stitch Dictionary?

Thank you! KnitOvation is a companion book to AlterKnit, so it’s got a similar vibe. It includes over 150 new motifs for knitters to play with and expand their custom colourwork knitting options.

Along with the motifs, there’s a chapter that explores 17 different yarns, all knit in the same colourwork motif so knitters can get a feel for what a difference fibre, construction, plies, weight, and colour can make.

KnitOvation also includes three new projects that combine different motifs and explain the design process so knitters can use the projects as jumping-off points for their own work. I hope that knitters and designers use both books together as toolkits for their personal explorations. 

And because folks always wonder, yes, the motifs in both books can be used by designers in paid patterns without credit to me! The books are like any other stitch dictionary in that way.

Thanks so much for your questions! Happy colourwork knitting!

We’re having two giveaways for Andrea’s two stitch dictionaries over on Instagram!- AlterKnit in French and KnitOvation!

To follow Andrea’s wooly adventures find her on FacebookInstagramTwitter & Ravelry.

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