As you may know, I am a great admirer of Kaffe Fassett. There is really only one reason to admire him, as it overtakes all other possible reasons: his extraordinary use of color.
Now. I know a lot of people out there that would say, "Change the colors in a Kaffe Fassett pattern? Are you nuts?" Guilty as charged.
|Peanut pattern by Yuki Ueda|
When I (and honestly, everyone else) saw the cover of Rowan Magazine 42 back in 2007, I knew I had to have that wrap.
But I also knew that I did not possibly have the $$$$ for that wrap. (Or, god forbid, the dress!!)
Kidsilk Haze is $15 a ball now, but it wasn't much cheaper back then. The wrap takes 15 balls (in 10 different shades)... so, yeah. Do the math, I'll cover my eyes.
But guess what? Just at this time, a gorgeous sparkly sister yarn of Kidsilk Haze, Kidsilk Night, had just been discontinued. The reasons for this still elude me. It was simply divine -- the same weight and feel of the Haze, but with a subtle tastefully matched sparkle. The hues were fabulous.
I preyed over 3 internet stores and my local yarn store, Mouliné, mopping up whatever stock was leftover. I didn't know what colors would go together, I didn't even know whether there was enough available when I started ordering, but I managed to get 15 balls together of 10 of the 12 possible Night shades.
|Shade Card, 2007 (another shade, Dazzle, is from previous cards)|
Now, as expected, Kaffe wasn't going to make it easy for me. This wrap isn't just striped with one color, but rather with two different colors held together at all times. Accordingly, the shades can't be understood by looking at a shade card, I had to wait until the skeins were in my hand.
Even then, it proved tough!
I set up an Excel sheet with his original colors. Then, I made a list of the yarn combinations I liked the least. I realized that there were color combos he never used either, possibly for the same reasons...
Somehow, it worked! And it cost half as much to make!!
|My exact color replacements can be found on Ravelry|
Oddly, the color I thought I liked the least, I ended up liking the best, and it ends up only showing up occasionally in the wrap. It's like a vein of gold amid layers of shale and sandstone.
Out of 252 projects on Ravelry, a small number have also played with color changing, to beautiful effects.
|Necesik's Earth Stripe Wrap|
|PaulinaP's Earth Stripe Wrap|
The punchline is, DON'T BE AFRAID TO CHANGE COLORS! A designer is not privy to every color combination, and even if they are in their own brilliant way, they can only choose one of many possibilities to show you. No, no, a lighting bolt will not strike you down if you try a different color combination. In fact, you may be pleasantly surprised to find that you (and your friends) greatly prefer your version.
Some other examples of my drastically different color changes:
One of the reasons I am showing you this 'vintage' finished object is because Rowan has just released a lovely replacement for Kidsilk Night: Kidsilk Haze Eclipse. This yarn has more natural fiber content, but still keeps oodles of sparkle. In fact, I think it sparkles more.
Kidsilk Haze: 25g, 229yd, 70% kid mohair, 27% silk
Kidsilk Night: 25g, 219yd, 67% kid mohair, 18% silk, 15% nylon
Kidsilk Eclipse: 25g, 227yd, 66% kid mohair, 27% silk, 7% nylon
There are currently 8 shades.
I know that these would be fabulous in the Earth Stripe Wrap. If you are shy, you can always use most of the original wrap colors, just replacing a few with some sparkle. Go ahead, step on the wild side! ;)
My Blood Stripe Wrap on Ravelry