Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Color Inventory: Running Hot & Cold

The cell phone rang when I was on my way to the grocery store around 7:30 yesterday evening.  I was desperately hungry and looking for something fast to make.  I had planned to make pasta with a red lentil sauce, but it takes almost an hour to cook and there was no way I was going to last that long.  Hungry and in a hurry, I plugged in my little hands-free earbud.  It was a prerecorded message from my boss telling me that I had just one more week of vacation left...a 7:30 AM meeting...check my school e-mail for a detailed attachment.  Buzzkill is the expression that comes to mind.  Not that I haven't already been to school for a meeting (two of my six person department are brand spanking new teachers this year so we are being proactive in our support) and spent countless hours thinking about what I want to do the first weeks of school (I have a new course load this year - six classes of Spanish 2 - ¡yeah, one prep! But how do I keep it fresh all day).
Color inventory 2: Running hot & cold

In honor of that phone call, my subconscious woke me at school day time: 5 AM.  Boy, the little dogs were surprised that they didn't need to whine to get me up this morning.  While waiting for the coffee to brew, I walked around the house and took pics for my color & pattern inspiration of the day.  Actually, I'm not trying to inspire myself so much as understand how to put together colors.  I'm a little all over the place - I like brights, hots, cools, earthtones, just about everything.  I look around at many sites and see so many great combos in beads and stringing, but my difficulty results in something like excitement, then frustration, then disappointment when I start rifling through the bead stash.  So I'm working on this. Either that or I have discovered and justified a fantastic new procrastination tool.  One of my friends calls this method the paralysis of analysis.  I am greatly inspired by La Bella Joya's exploration of Margie Deeb's The Beader's Color Palette.  But I'm not ready (in my mind) to put the beads together yet.  I guess I'm taking a color inventory.

One of the things that got me started thinking about this was a quick glance through my Etsy favorites.  I noticed that there were little clusters of colors within all those fab pieces I was hearting.  Then I looked at the sacred bead stash.  It didn't really match.  Just as I have been battling with clothing and making outfits, I need to learn how to use neutrals (and what defines a neutral seems to be situation dependent) to show off splashes of color.

Russian leaf color inspiration

Yesterday I posted this Russian leaf earring.  I had in my mind a more reddish brown - this one goes green (sort of baby poop green)  and I actually have a much better brown in Delicas, but I was on a kick to see what the pattern would look like with round 11/0 and didn't follow what I knew I should be doing.  I wonder what better pairings there might be for color.  I'm going to use my color inspiration from a few days ago to get to the bottom of this.
Dog shot of the day.  From a FLA corgi party.  Not my photo.


  1. You may not thing your ready, but you'd be surprised what you learn from Margie's book. There are a lot of color patterns for color newbies, and also some more advanced...I would suggest giving it a try! I will say this, you look like you've got some amazing color inspiration right in your own living room!

  2. Yes, I'm surrounded. I think that leads to not knowing where to start. I am putting Margie Deeb's book on my wish list and have a crazy idea: she is near Atlanta and has a whole variety of workshops and classes on her site...I wonder if I could find people interested in attending something with her & how many people it would take to make it reasonably affordable. I'm about 4 hrs. from ATL.

  3. i love love love neutral with a splash of color - it's pretty much my color palette and it came about quite by accident. i say just jump in and start putting colors together that you like and see what happens. also, when i've been running low on beads and had to make due with what i had in stock, was when i discovered some really cool color combos! just play!!!

  4. Thank you for participating in my giveaway! You have a lovely blog!
    And that's some nice dog soup. :))

  5. Lois, I don't think we ever stop learning how to put colours is something that can always be improved and worked on.

    I tend to only use a couple of colours in any one piece...however, I add different tones of each colour to add visual interest. Or different bead finishes ie. opaque, luster, etc and different size beads in similar tones. You can't go wrong with complementary colours...they will always go together! Jump right in and have a go, you have nothing to lose and everything to gain ;-)