Mystery Afghan Knit-a-long: Choosing the Right Colours

The time is almost here for the Mystery Afghan Shopping List to be released and, although Rowan will be giving several colour suggestions, you can also choose colour combinations yourself. So, I thought I should write a little bit about how to go about choosing colour, especially if you are undecided.

Colour Theory is a very complex subject involving everything from colour mixing to colour meaning. In this post I will try to discuss some of the basics in order to help you choose from the fifty shades of Rowan’s Pure Wool Worsted yarn so you will end up with an Afghan to treasure for ever. Of course, this will help you choose appropriate colour combinations for any project that you might be considering.

I would like to add that I am an artist and painter and have written a practical colour theory course which I have taught at the University of the Arts, London and in private companies in Germany and the USA.

Colour Theory: The Basics

12COLWH3On the 12 colour wheel shown above, the primaries are numbered with a 1. To make a secondary colour, numbered 2, you need to mix together two primary colours. To make a tertiary colour, numbered 3, you need to mix together an adjoining primary and secondary colour, for example blue (primary) + green (secondary) = blue-green (tertiary).

Any particular colour has three attributes: hue, value and saturation. Hue is the term that is used to distinguish one colour family from another, as in blue from red and orange from yellow, and is used to help describe something, i.e. a ‘green’ apple or a ‘blue’ sky.

RedWhite

Red fully saturated and lightened by adding white.

Value is the degree of lightness or darkness of a colour and a colours value can be affected when mixed with another colour and by the adding black or white.

redbluGreen

Red and it’s complimentary colour blue-green are muted and then ‘greyed’ towards the centre of the image above when mixed together and the resulting colour will be darker than the two original colours.

Saturation is the relative purity of a colour and colours are muted or greyed by being mixed with their complementaries (the colour on the opposite side of the colour wheel, i.e. red and blue-green are complimentary colours). In their purest, most brilliant state, colours are at maximum saturation. As other hues are mixed in, they become more and more neutral (greyed) and are said to be lower in saturation.

Choosing Your Afghan Colours: Where to Start

Firstly, decide where you will be using the Afghan and go to that room and collect together a range of items that reflect the room’s colour scheme. Place them together to study. Take a photograph if it helps.

room items_s

Here’s an example of some items from my lounge where I will be using my finished Afghan.

Monochromatic Scheme

Using my selected room items above and after looking at the 50 available shades in the Pure Wool Worsted range I could go with Ivory, Soft Cream, Almond, Toffee, Cocoa Bean, Rust, Chestnut, Hazel, Buttercup, Gold, Seville, Papaya and Garage. That’s 13 colours from the 50 available…..quite a good selection!

PWW12COLRSHowever, the simplest idea would be to choose just one of these colours.

If you think you would like to enhance the monochromatic scheme you could add a neutral dark or light shade to add a bit of tonal interest. Choose from Ivory, Soft Cream, Almond, Toffee, Cocoa Bean, Clove, Black, Umber, Granite and Moonstone. These are all neutral shades from the Pure Wool Worsted range and can add some lightness or darkness to your chosen color.

papayaIvoryHere I have chosen Papaya and Ivory. The image I have drawn above is to help me decide how much of each shade I would like to use.The more Ivory yarn I use in relation to the Papaya the lighter the overall effect will be (as seen towards the right).

papayaUmberAnd here I have chosen Papaya and Umber which gives a totally different feeling to the one above.

Colour and Grey

PWWgreysIf you choose a strong saturated colour such as Papaya, Cardinal, Morello, Plum, Peacock and Periwnkle and team it with Moonstone or Granite you do run the risk of creating a complimentary hue over the grey. For example, if you use Cardinal (a fully saturated red) it’s complimentary hue will be seen on the grey which will make it appear a greeny-grey. Or, if you use Papaya (a fully saturated orange colour) it’s complimentary hue will be seen on the grey which will make it appear a blue-grey. You may want to bear this in mind when mixing a strong saturated colour with grey. If you do want to use a grey and do not want this to happen I would go with the darker grey shade Granite as the complimentary colour is less likely to appear.

Analgous or Harmonius Colour Scheme

Analagous or harmonious colours are colours which are found adjacent to each other on the colour wheel, i.e. blue, blue-green, green. From my selected items I could go with Gold, Seville, Papaya and Buttercup but would probably want to add a dark neutral (Cocoa Bean or Umber) and/or a light neutral (Soft Cream) to add some differing tones. As I prefer the more saturated colours rather than the muted ones I would probably limit this choice to Buttercup and Papaya with Soft Cream and Toffee as tonal contrasts.

PWW6COLRSComplimentary Colour Scheme.

If you want something more striking choose complimentary colours……colours that are opposite each other on the colour wheel, i.e, red and green, orange ad blue. They work together by enhancing each other: orange will make the blue appear a more vivid blue and the blue will make the orange appear a more vivid orange. Complimentary pairs from the Pure Wool Worsted shades are Cardinal and Peacock, Plum and Buttercup, Papaya and Periwinkle. If you wanted to use some lighter complimentary pairs which would be less striking you could try Pretty Pink and Oxygen, Splash and Soft Cream.

PWWsplashcreamAs my room colours do not contain any complimentary pairs I could only choose near complimentaries which could only be Papaya and Garage or Papaya and Hazel. But another interesting colour idea would be to use Garage and Papaya with the shade Hazel acting as a ‘bridge’ to help bring the colours together. If you look closely at Hazel it is a heathered colour with flecks of bright orange on greeny-orange yarn.

PWW3colsI do hope that has help you prepare for the moment you have to choose your yarn colours when the Mystery Afghan shopping list is published. When deciding on your yarn colours please do try to look at the colours on a shade card containing the actual yarn if possible and not from a computer screen.

If you need any help with colour choices please leave me a reply and I will try my best to answer your question. Click on the Leave a reply link found below at the bottom of this post or click here, and when the new page opens scroll to the bottom of the page to the ‘Leave a Reply’ box.

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Take a look at all the shades available in Rowan Pure Wool Worsted.

Keep knitting!

100 thoughts on “Mystery Afghan Knit-a-long: Choosing the Right Colours

  1. I am not good at deciding on colors for an afghan. I was giving 6 different colored yarn and I’m having trouble deciding what colors to put next to each other in my rows. The colors are Ivory, Arctic Ice (light blue), Sea Blue, Antique Teal, Light Taupe, and Brown. This is the order that I’m thinking about, but I’m unsure. Should I go light to the darker color or should I mix them up alternating the blues and the browns? I only have 1 skein of each color and plan to make a lap blanket. Any words of wisdom would be greatly appreciated.

    • Hi DoeDee, thanks for asking me about your color scheme for your afghan but I’m not sure how much help I will be as the shade names you have mentioned do not match the Rowan Pure Wool Worsted shades. So, I can only guess at the actual colors from the names you have given. Personally, I like the idea of going from the light colors in the center of the blanket and then using the darker ones as you go towards the outside finishing with the darkest color at the outermost edge. However, if this doesn’t work well because of the number of squares you have of each color you could just arrange them in the order as you have in your original comment and call this Row 1. Then on Row 2 start with Arctic Ice (underneath the Ivory square of Row 1) and continue across with Sea Blue, Antique Teal, Light Taupe, Brown ending the row with Ivory. For Row 3 start with Sea Blue and continue across with Antique Teal, Light Taupe, Brown, Ivory and ending with Arctic Ice. Continue with Row 4, 5, 6……etc in the same way until you have used all the squares. You will see that you have the colors running in a diagonal pattern. What do you think?

  2. Hi Esther,
    Thank you for replying so quickly! & yes that has helped immensely..I just wanted reassurance as I was hoping to knit 6 in each colour!

  3. Hi!!! I am very late in joining this fabulous KAL from Martin Storey,but after a stressful last 6 months,am feeling lots better & have decided that doing this afghan will be very therapeutic & while away the coming Autumn afternoons & darker evenings wonderfully!!
    I have chosen to knit the 9 colourway,with my own choice of colours as it will be used in my upstairs study cum knitting room. The walls & sofa are pale cream with soft furnishings & carpet& cushions,incorporating rust,almond & toffee shades..
    I love the Autumn & want to incorporate its beautiful hues into my afghan. The feature wall is similar to’Rosy’,but I want to introduce a darker more plummy shade…Damson.
    Here are my chosen colours…soft cream,almond,cocoabean,toffee,damson,clove,moonshine,rust…with hazel as the trim.
    Do you think these will work well together?
    Any help appreciated!
    Thanks,Judy

    • Hi Judy, the shades you have chosen will work great together…….your afghan will look fabulous when you have finished. Good idea to spend the next few months knitting in the gloomy afternoons and you can do it at your own pace too! I would love to see a photo of your finished afghan; you can post it on my Facebook page What Colours Make…… https://www.facebook.com/WhatColoursMake

      • Hi Esther!! thank you so much for replying me so quickly.
        I’d love to post pics of my finished afghan & will keep you updated on my progress for the next few weeks!

          • Hi Esther, I now have all my 8(+1 for trim) colours as stated in my other posts,for my afghan!! I’m sooo excited to begin,but am not sure which colours to start the first square. Also,as I am only using half the amount of colours,should I knit 6 in one colour for each different square pattern or 3 in 2 colours as stated in the original 17 colourway used by Martin? Either way I will end up with 48 squares! I have 2 balls in each colour as opposed to 1 in his.

          • Hi Judy, I would knit each square design all in the same colour. The reason I say this is when you are ready to sew the squares together at the end it will be easier to arrange them. When I arranged my squares I found it difficult not to place the same pattern squares next to each other and then when I moved them I found the same colour squares ended up together. Hope that helps!

      • Hi Esther!
        I have finally finished my afghan (although I knit the Spice afghan last year & have just the trim to complete!),after over 2 years! I took out Hazel for the trim & used Cocoa bean instead & used Rosy in the squares .

          • Yes it does,sadly. My mum died in August which put a stop.o everything,including knitting. Now I have to finish my blankets & possibly knit just one more,using 4 of my favourite squares from each one!

  4. I realize I am late–I just came across this afghan project yesterday and am SO intrigued! I’m excited to start, but of course I don’t know about the colors. I want to do a 5 color afghan. I like the purple-toned suggestion but am not too keen on the light/pinky purple colors such as Morello. I’m thinking Chestnut, Redcurrant, Damson, and Rosy, with Clove for the border. What do you think?

    • It doesn’t matter that you are late Sarah….you still will have a beautiful afghan when you are finished. Will you be using the afghan in a particular room? Maybe you would like to match the colors with the decor of that room? However, those five colors that you have suggested will look fantastic together!

      • Thanks for your response! We are moving soon, so I’m hoping to match this with our idea for our new living room–gray couch and walls with dark purple accents and natural wood furniture. I hope this turns out well–I’m excited to begin.

  5. Very disappointed I have finished my Afghan and decided to give it a gentle wash before blocking, but the colour has come out of the cream squares and they are now a dirty white!?!?

    • I did the same Dawn. I washed all my squares in Soak prior to blocking but washed my cream squares separate from my Buttercup, Papaya, Toffee and Cardinal squares as I know there is always excess dye in the yarn. Did this happen to your cream squares when washed on their own or did you wash them with another colour?

  6. This is soooo late! I have been downloading and saving the patterns but wanted to see what the finished item looked like before choosing colours and buying wool. I am so grateful for your post as I am finding colour choice difficult. I didn’t want too many red/pink tones. Like another post, I want to use predominantly blues but was interested in making a 17 colour version. Do you think if i concentrated on all the blue and green shades that it would jar too much? I love azure and peacock and oxford etc but if I am too eclectic, will it all just look a bit of a mess? Your comments about the impact of adjacent colours on the look of each colour have been taken and I’m worried that lots of lovely colours will just look ‘brown’!

    • Hi Mel, the colour choice is difficult because there are so many colours to choose from but your idea of using mainly blues and greens is a good one. As these hues are next to each other on the color wheel, known as harmonizing colours, you will not have any trouble with the overall afghan looking brown; that only happens if you added reds and yellows to the mix and then it probably would not happen as the squares are quite large. I think your blue-green afghan will look fantastic!

  7. I have chosen oxygen, grasshopper, apple and bottle as my four colors, but am lost on choosing a trim color. Looking at cocoa bean, but not sure.Want a nice contrast…maybe a surprise. Help

    • I love the colors you have chosen Patricia…all shades of green. I think another green shade would work best; what about one of the darker green shades like Forest or Garage?

  8. Hi I am thinking about a 5 shade Afghan. I was thinking about using the following:
    Buttercup, Olive, Papaya, Ivory, and a black looking color.

    Would you provide some comments on my color chose and what would be a good trim color

    Thanks
    Beth

    • Hi Beth, great that you are thinking about knitting the Afghan in 5 shades. Your color choice has a near complimentary feel to it with the Papaya and Olive shades. I think I would change the Ivory to Soft Cream as this will harmonize better with Buttercup and use Umber as your ‘black looking color’. As I am thinking of your color choices in near complimentary pairs, Papaya and Olive, Soft Cream and Umber, I am tempted to use Buttercup for the trim. What do you think Beth?

      • I like the idea of using buttercup for the trim however I would like to use it as a block too. I bought a skien of Papaya, Olive and Buttercup and love the look. I like your suggestion of soft cream and umber. I have a beautiful Black, white and shades of green modern quilt from Crate and Barrel on my bed. It has large flowers. So do you think umber will look OK with the black in the quilt.

        In addition if I bought a 6th color for the trim, would you have any suggestions?

        Thanks so much for you feedback

        Beth

        • Sorry……I didn’t know you were trying to match shades with the colors in the quilt. Therefore, I would use Ivory and Black and not Soft Cream and Umber (although Umber does appear black or what you might call ‘nearly black’). The best color for the trim would probably be the shade that is most dominant in the quilt. Using the trim color for the blocks is a perfect……I am doing the same with mine. Are there any other colors in the quilt besides the ones you mention; look closely as there might be a small amount somewhere?

          • I like your idea for Umber so I will check that color out. It is a Marimekko pattern from 2011 and the colors are white, black and two shades of green. I like the buttercup and papaya as pop of colors. Might try Moonstone as the trim. Perhaps I should knit up the afghan and chose the trim last.

            Thank your for your advice and I might even choose your soft cream and Umber colors as the the Ivory color looked a little harsh!

            I appreciate your assistance in choosing colors

            Beth

          • The Umber will definitely look softer than Black also. You mentioned two shades of green; could you find your 6th color in one of the green shades? Also, I think it is a good idea waiting until you’ve knitted all the blocks before you decide on the trim color……that’s what I’m doing!

      • Wow! Great ideas… I will take the pillow covers in and decide. I will definately look at your suggested colors…Thanks so much

        • Well I decided to knit the afghan in shades of purple for my niece who is off to college in late August. I chose the 4 purple that Rowan recommended, 150, 121, 115 and 114. I did not care for the Moonstone as the trim and chose the Mustard, 131 to give it a pop color. What do you think? Is the mustard too dramatic?

          Thanks

          • Hi Beth, I love the idea of the purple coloured afghan and I also would not choose moonstone for the trim. Mustard is actually a yellow-green shade and would create a near-complimentary color effect. You could also consider using Gold which I think may look better than Mustard and still give that pop of colour you are looking for.

          • Thanks for your advice. I kept the receipt this time and can exchange when I head back to Atlanta!

          • Wow you are correct the mustard is on the green side. I like the idea of gold. What are your thoughts on Buttercup…too yellow?

  9. Bit late to the party! Tried to resist but patterns so lovely. So am looking at Mallard and wondering if goes with coffee bean and if so what a good third colour would be. what you advise?

    • Never too late to join Sarah. Cocoa Bean and Mallard will go together and a third shade which may look good is Hawthorn as it is a heathered shade with a mixture of dark green and brown. These three colours will make a fairly dark blanket/afghan which is great if it’s going to get lots of use and won’t need washing too often. 🙂

  10. Hi, I am late joining, but like the idea of a 5 colour afghan. What do you think of Granite for the trim, and Rich Red, Oxygen, Moonstone and Pretty Pink/ or Splash for the other 4 colours? I am useless when it comes to seeing colours together – I am not trying to match with any particular room, just love the greeny blue hues with the reddish ones.
    thanks for your help.

    • Siobhan, I like your colour choice; it has a complimentary feel to it. I would definitely go with Pretty pink to stay with the complimentary theme as Splash is a light purple shade which would throw the colour scheme off. I think you have a subconscious understanding of colours……not useless at all!

  11. I am thinking about doing this project in less than the 17 colours and have been looking at the suggestions made by the Rowan team for doing this. The only thing is I’m a bit confused. If you work with the suggested 17 colours the patterns tell you which colours to use – if you are working with less how to you know which to use for particular squares to get a good distribution of colour within the completed afghan?

    Any advice would be gratefully received!

    • Hi Stitcher, with each pattern just choose any two of your colors and knit 3 squares with one color and 3 squares with the other color. 🙂

  12. Hi I about to redecorate my bedroom in aubergine, white, light green and light grey The afghan is to go on the bed could you suggest 5 colours and how to decide which colour to knit each square please
    Thanks I am really excited

    • Hi Dawn, This sounds so exciting …..a newly decorated bedroom with an afghan to match! Two of the colours are very easy to choose: Ivory 101 and Moonstone 112. However, there are 5 different shades of light-mid green in Pure Wool Worsted so I could only guess at what type of light green would be the best match. Oxygen 137 and Grasshopper 130 are the lightest greens with Apple 129, Olive 125 and Bottle 140 more of a mid tone green. Aubergine can be be anything from a purply-red to a purply-brown and it is almost impossible for me to match without seeing the actual colour you have in mind. The possible shades might be Crimson 123, Rich Red 124, Damson 150 and maybe even Chestnut 107. If you have already chosen your colours for your bedroom, brush some of the paint colours onto a small piece of paper or card and take this along to a yarn store that sells Rowan and ask if you can look at a shade card. If they sell Rowan they should have a shade card. As this redecorating project sounds so great Dawn, I would definitely try to do this.

      When you do decide on the 5 shades, choose any 2 shades from your 5 and knit 3 squares in one colour and 3 squares in the other colour.

      I do hope this helps?

      • Thanks you have mentioned the colours I was considering and once I have samples of wallpaper and fabric I will take you advice and go to my local rowan outlet
        Thanks again

  13. Hi. Can you please help me with color combinations? I am a new knitter and need as much help as I can get! I have already chosen #144 Mallard and was hoping to do either a 5 shade or 3 shade afghan. My living room is gray and teal. I would like to use several shades of gray and one or two more shades of teal. Can you please provide some color suggestions? Thank you!!

    • Hi Jenny and welcome to this knit-a-long! I think you have a pretty good idea of a great color combination with the teals and grays. All the teal colors are Mallard 144, Azure 138, Oxygen 137 with Peacock 139 being slightly more of a green teal and Electric 143 being a very dark blue teal. The only 2 grays are Moonstone 112 and Granite 111. A 3 color Afghan would look good using just Mallard, Moonstone and Granite. You need to knit 48 squares in total and each ball of Pure Wool Worsted will make 3 squares with a bit of yarn left over. So, for example, you may only need to buy 7 balls each of Mallard and Moonstone and then 2 balls of Granite for the trim. For a 5 shade Afghan you could choose 4 balls each of the following shades: Mallard, Oxygen, Moonstone, Azure and 2 balls of Granite for the trim. You could of course just use 4 colors Mallard, Oxygen, Moonstone and Granite using one of the colors that is used for the squares also as the trim color. What do you think?

  14. i love, love, love your 12 color choice shown above; however, we need 17…i’m not good at choosing colors so could you please suggest the other 5 that would work?
    thank you so much!
    wendy

    • Hi Wendy, thank you so much for your positive comment……so nice to read! I have chosen those colors to go with my living room but if you love them too that’s great! Here are 17 colors that I think would all work well based on the ones I suggested in my post:
      1 ball of each in Ivory, Soft Cream, Almond, Toffee, Cocoa Bean, Clove, Rust, Chestnut, Buttercup, Gold, Seville, Papaya, Garage, Hazel, Rich Red, Hawthorn and 2 balls of Umber for the trim. What do you think?

  15. I am knitting with blues in 5 colors. Does it matter what colors we use in each block? It looked like you picked a light and a dark for the first block.
    Thanks

    est color

    • Rowan’s instructions are for Martin Storey’s Original 17 color Afghan but they gave other options if you did not want to knit something so colorful, so there will be no other instructions for the 9 or 5 color afghans. What you will need to do is knit 16 squares of each of your 8 colours (the 9th color is for the trim). So you could do this several ways. When you download each Pattern:
      1. Choose any one of your 4 colours and knit 12 squares.
      2. Choose any two of your 4 colours and knit 6 squares with one and 6 with the other colour.
      3. Choose any three of your 4 colours and knit 3 squares with each color.
      Whatever way you choose to do it you should have 48 squares at the end. Does this help?

  16. I think I am going bold and use “Mondriaan” colors. Black for the border. white and primaries for the blocks. Would that work?

    • I think that is a fantastic idea…… it worked for Mondrian so will definitely work on your afghan! I’m looking forward to seeing it when finished!

  17. I am going to make my afghan in blue’s for my son. Would you suggest 5 blue’s for me? Thanks I am excited to see the first block.

    • I absolutely love blue! I would choose Ocean, Periwinkle, Breton, Oxford and Navy which also gives you the full range of light blue to very dark blue. For the trim, use the color that you want to be the overall dominant color of the blanket. What do you think?

  18. Hi, have finally opted for the one colour-moonstone and granite trim. However behind Martin Storey in the video there was a gorgeous throw in grey with three visible colours-looked very dark, then granite, then moonstone-couldn’t see the rest. Are there 5 greys to play with-but then which trim? Don’t really want creams or other colour group.
    Much thanks for the adventure, Rhoda

    • Hi Rhoda, those colours behind Martin in the video are possibly black or Umber, Granite and Moonstone. Granite and Moonstone are the only two grey shades in Pure Wool Worsted. Umber is a very dark grey-brown and it looks to me like the only shade that would work well with the two greys you have chosen; the black just seems too strong against Granite and Moonstone. Sorry that there are not more greys for you to choose from. If you did change your mind about adding a colour to go along with Umber and the two greys, Ocean and Breton would look good? For the trim I would choose the shade that you want to be the overall dominant color of the blanket.

  19. Very interesting article on colours, thank you. I had thought of knitting this afghan in cream – a neutral colour to show the textures. However I’m now thinking that may be boring! But I would like a neutral blanket. Do you think I could put the greys -umber, granite and moonstone together with the cream? Which 5th colour would you suggest? And which for the trim?
    Thanks for your help.
    B.

    • Hi Barbara, Umber is actually a very dark grey-brown but looks like a dark grey on a computer screen. I think the Soft Cream would work well with Umber, Granite and Moonstone but I think Ivory would work well also. You could also use Toffee or Cocoa Bean as the 5th shade. Cocoa Bean will also work well if you want to keep the finished afghan a darker neutral.

    • Hi Faith, I would probably knit 24 squares in Splash (the lavender shade) and 24 in Soft Cream and then knit the border in Splash. However, it may be different if I was trying to match the decor of a room which was mainly cream with small accents of lavender shades. In that case I might knit 36 squares in Soft Cream and 12 in Splash with a Soft Cream border. What do you think?

  20. Thanks for the info on colour theory. I’ve tried to understand it before, but this is the best explanation I’ve seen.

    • Thank you so much for your positive feedback Eleanor. It is difficult to keep it fairly simple when just explaining the basics; there is so much more to colour theory but it is so fascinating!

  21. I’m in!!! Can’t wait!!! Did you tell us how many squares? I think I’ll do each one in a different color…as I love color and I need something cheery!!!

    • Welcome aboard the Rowan KAL Kelly! The details of the KAL is still a secret but the shopping list is due to be released in the next 7-10 days. You will be able to use all the 50 shades of Rowan Pure Wool Worsted but you will have a lot of yarn left over and that will be quite expensive also! More details soon about making a colorful afghan but also using up most of the yarn……choose from 18 different colors….oops!……I’ve given it away now!

  22. I am so excited about the KAL project. The Colour Theory is interesting, but complex. I hope you can help me select. I have posted a picture and sent it via email to you. Looking forward in anticipation. Thanks.

  23. It was interesting to see your color wheell the moment I opened the post. I honestly had not thought about using my own color wheel for the same purpose; I only think watercolors and oils. Thank your for showing me a new way to use it.

  24. Hi Looking forward to the blanket but would also appreciate colour suggestions – variations of the monochromatic idea with a touch of something please. (to go with taupe)
    Thanks, Rhoda

    • So pleased you’re looking forward to the KAL. I am assuming the colour Taupe you mention is like the Pure Wool Worsted Shade Almond? You could mix this with Ivory or Soft Cream or even both, for a light coloured blanket. If you would prefer a dark blanket you could use Almond, Cocoa Bean and Clove. If you would prefer something with a bit of colour rather than these two neutral combinations you will need to get back to me with a colour that is in the room where you will be using the blanket.

  25. One thing confuses me: complimentary colors are opposite on the color wheel, and your example is red and blue-green. However, it looks on the wheel as though red and green are opposite/complimentary, just as violet and yellow, orange and blue. Can you elaborate for clarification, please?

    Thank you so much for this wonderful article.

    • Hi Venice, You are right to be confused. The colour wheel I have drawn up is very much ‘standardized’ and then for the description for the complimentary colours I have not. To be more accurate, the red that we all understand as being a primary colour actually has yellow in it and therefore can not actually be a primary colour. A red similar to magenta (a pinkish-red) is actually more a true primary red. This would make it’s complimentary a more of a blue-green (probably somewhere in between the green and the blue-green of my ‘standardized’ colour wheel). Now I’ve probably confused you even more! I think I will edit my blog post so it reads ‘green’ as I think I would need to delve deeper into colour theory which will be too much just for this post. Thanks so much for reading so carefully!

  26. Useful ideas. Thanks. I have made some initial choices but not sure how many colours to choose. And am eagerly awaiting amounts so I can decide finally. By instinct I seem to have followed most of your guidelines!

    • Thank you Deb…..you are a natural! In terms of colour choices, Rowan will be giving a few combination suggestions, but …….not to give to much away……you can choose from 1 colour for the whole Afghan, 2 colours, 3 colours, 5 colours, 9 colours or 17 colours. Ooooops…I’ve said too much already!

  27. I thought that the article was great, however some of it I could grasp and some not so much so I will print off and re read. I recently bought a color wheel because I love color but haven’t always been happy with my combinations so wanted to learn more. thanks. Just to be clear it will be using 5 colors on the afghan!!!

    • Thank you Karen. I did try to keep it fairly simple but colour theory is so very complicated and it is difficult to explain a small amount without getting into too much detail. If you printed off the blog post make sure you did it after 3:15pm UK time Monday 31st March as I made an edit to the post just before that time. Also, if you haven’t been happy with your colour choices in the past it may be because you have an instinct that something is not quite right but not sure what; learning more about colour will definitely help. In terms of colour choices, Rowan will be giving a few combination suggestions, but you will be able to choose from 1 colour for the whole Afghan, 2 colours, 3 colours, 5 colours, 9 colours or 17 colours. Ooooops….now I’ve nearly given half the mystery away!

  28. Hi, for those of us that are not well versed in color theory and might not have the time to give to come up with a scheme ourselves, do you know if Rowan and its crew of color experts are going to make some suggestions in terms of yarn colors based on some basic color groups? I think its a bit daunting to choose between 9-12/5 colors for this project and I’m now having major second thoughts about this project. I know many people will be excited by the prospect of choosing from amongst the many wonderful yarn colors, but I’m not one of them unfortunately as I’m just interested in the experience of learning new stitches. I suppose I could just pick a single color…..Any guidance would be appreciated. Your explanation of color theory was well done, but I think choosing more than 1 color is beyond me!

    • How do I join this knit along? Also, I’m with Jo above when it comes to picking colors. I definitely need help with that. Thanks

      • Hi Paula, to join this KAL just make sure you subscribe to my blog and then you will receive a notification email as soon as I publish the posts containing all the KAL information……shopping list, patterns, etc. Also, Rowan will be giving several colour combination suggestions if you are worried about choosing colour. Or, as I said to Jo, you can knit the afghan in one colour. If you need any help….just let me know 🙂

    • Jo, no need to worry about choosing colour combinations as Rowan will be giving several suggestions. However, you can knit the Afghan in just one colour if you would like to. If you need any help choosing this colour please let me know……I’m am happy to help 🙂

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