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BellaOnline's Knitting Editor


Ways to add Color to your Knitting

Guest Author - Marjorie Colletta

I recently had the pleasure of taking a class from the designer Valentina Devine. She is a designer known for using a lot of color in her designs and for being one of the few designers where making a gauge swatch is not necessary. Her other well known technique is to use the yarn ends, left when you switch colors, to embellish your work.

This is the swatch I created during her workshop:

Valentina Square

The technique used is one way to do modular knitting. Another way of modular knitting is the log cabin method which is very similar, but the way you work the pieces is slightly different. The way the colors are changed is the biggest difference, in the log cabin swatch one color doesn't turn a corner.

Here is an example of log cabin knitting:

Log Cabin Blanket

Another way to knit blocks of color is mitered squares. You start with a straight row, and by mirroring decreases in the center, the line creates a filled in square.

It is shown in the scarf below:

Mitered Square Scarf

All of these show off many yarns at a time, according to Ms. Devine do not despair about the color combinations, since all colors go together when combined with black.

Naturally, you can knit stripes also in various colors. One thing to remember is that with stripes use odd numbers, odd numbers of stripes, three, five, seven. Or odd number of colors, apparently the eye and brain find odd numbers more interesting than even numbers. In the scarf below I used five colors, and the rows are 2 of one color, 2 of a second color, 4 of a third color, 6 of a fourth color, then I repeat the sequence staring with a fifth color.

Therefore the color repeats itself, but never with the same amount of rows:

striped Sweater

striped Sweater colors

Intarsia is also a way of working with color. Intarsia is inserting blocks of colors, argyle being the most famous of these.

Argyle Sweater

Fairisle is another example of working with color, fairisle is also called stranded knitting. You use a color in a row and switch to a different color, while carrying the unused color along the back of the work, picking it up when you are ready to use it again.


Finally, there are yarns that automatically change colors without you having to do a thing! The yarn is dyed to create stripes and the knitter has to do nothing to create them.
self Striping Socks

What does your experience with color knitting look like? Come share in the forum.

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Content copyright © 2018 by Marjorie Colletta. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Marjorie Colletta. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Korie Beth Brown, Ph.D. for details.


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