C&T Publishing, http://www.ctpub.com, $16.95
Do you find yourself struggling with the question of whether these colors go together? Do you wish you could change the colors in a design and know they will go together?
Then this tool, created for quilters, is for you. Unlike color wheels, the tool doesn’t demand that you know something about color but works on a principle of matching.
The tool spreads out like a painter’s fan of colors which makes it easy to carry around and hold up to threads. It starts with a introduction to the color wheel and to the five basic plans for creating a color scheme.
Then comes the heart of the tool, the 24 cards devoted to the colors on their color wheel. Each card covers a single color. At the top of the card is the pure hue and its name. This is the biggest swatch on the card. Along one side of the card are smaller swatches showing the shading range from the lightest tint to the darkest shade. The pure hue is in the middle. Along the other side are three sets of tones (color + gray). One uses a tine with gray, the second uses the pure hue with gray and the third combines shades with gray.
One way to use this side of the tool is to find the match of a color of thread. On my desk at the moment is a shade of Watercolours, Bittersweet, which looks red-orange to me. And indeed, I find its closest match is pure orange-red.
Now comes the cool part — the backside of the card. For each color in the tool, five color schemes are developed. Monochromatic, complementary, analogous, split complementary and triadic color schemes are found for this color. Each color in the scheme is identified by its card number, so it’s easy for you to find the other colors in the scheme and then match those cards to your thread.
If I decide I want a complementary scheme, I find the complement to be aqua blue. If I turn to that card I find anther whole range of colors to go with my orange-red thread, ranging from just a hint of blue to a wonderful deep teal. I can already see, just by looking at the swatches, some great possibilities for needlepoint, and I was picking a thread at random.
Imagine how great this will be when planning a project.
That’s two of the three tools. The third is a value finder. Knowing the value of a particular thread can be difficult, especially when comparing colors. The tool has two sheets of colored plastic, one red, one green. Using these filters you can put them over a series of threads, of different colors and you will see how the value of each compares. This will liven your needlepoint by preventing monotone color schemes where the values of two different colors are too close and the needlepoint becomes flat and uninteresting.
This is an outstanding tool, one you’ll turn to again and again.