February 16, 2019

Project a Month: Color Theory with Karen Barbé

Project a Month 2 - Color Theory Class with Karen Barbe on Domestika as featured by floresita on Feeling Stitchy

A year and a half ago, I had the pleasure of reviewing Colour Confident Stitching by Karen Barbé, and I was immediately taken in by her gorgeous book.

Last month, I was very pleased to discover that Karen was teaching an online Color Theory class on a Spanish-language site called Domestika.

I knew nothing about Domestika, but the intro video Karen posted on her blog really piqued my interest. Spanish was my first language, but my speaking ability is clumsy at best. But I took the plunge and purchased the class, which was on sale for half price, and decided I would use this chance to improve my Spanish AND my color skills.

Follow along with her book!

Don't speak Spanish? The good news is all of the concepts in Karen's online class can be found in her book Colour Confident Stitching, so if you want to try what I'm doing, I'll give you the corresponding page number in her book!

I am often pressed for time when I do book reviews and I find it difficult to do a thorough review. So there were many wonderful concepts in Colour Confident Stitching that I didn't have time to explore - this online class gave me all the inspiration I needed to take it all further!

Floss Color Cards - "Color Compasses"

My favorite thing about Karen's color theory class so far has to be her floss color cards:
(p.28 in her book)

Color Theory class with  Karen Barbé

With the color cards in the center, I sorted paint chips (the kind you find in hardware stores). Karen calls her color cards in Spanish, brújulas cromáticas - color compasses. They help you understand where a color sits on the color wheel, if the color is lighter, brighter, more muted, or dark, and by extension, whether the color is warmer or cooler.

I LOVED sorting colors, and it opened my eyes to color relationships I had never seen before!

Color Theory class with  Karen Barbé

Here I am, repeating this exercise with a bundle of fat quarters... I chose this fabric bundle randomly, but I love how closely they match the paint chips I brought home from the hardware store! It looks like I have certain colors I gravitate towards, and others I clearly do not (hello orange and medium green!)

Holding Karen's color cards against fabrics is a tactile way to measure color temperature:

Color Theory with Karen Barbé

These 2 fabrics are options for my final piece - pale blue and pale pink. I couldn't decide if the pink was warmer or cooler, so I included 2 color cards - red-violet and red - what would your guess be?

These cards have helped me understand color in a way I never have before - and I've been stitching for over 10 years now!

Stitch along!

If you are a Spanish speaker, I fully recommend Karen's class - Teoría del color para proyectos textiles. I was not paid to review this class, I found it on my own, I have already purchased 2 more embroidery classes on Domestika and they are gorgeous. I am very impressed by Domestika - the quality of the videos, the talent of the artists, and their site and forums are wonderful.

If you are not a Spanish speaker, as I mentioned earlier, and color theory interests you, I highly recommend Karen's book, Colour Confident Stitching, you will have all the materials you need to follow along!

Next week, I'll show you the 5 color palettes I chose, based on color wheel harmonies - here's a preview!

Color Theory with Karen Barbé

I stitched 5 small examples so I could decide on a favorite palette - do you have a favorite? For my final post, I'll show you my rendition of the final class design!

Hi, I'm floresita, editor of Feeling Stitchy. I'm an avid stitcher, knitter, and crafter. You can see more of my stitching on Instagram and my blog. My vintage transfer collection is on Vintage Transfer Finds.

Feel free to email me with any ideas for the blog!

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