We’re now into March, and although it was snowing here yesterday, signs of spring are everywhere.
The bulbs I planted in the autumn have sprouted, and in my garden there are crocuses, some early daffodils and grape hyacinths. While I’ve been out roaming the village, I’ve spotted snowdrops, buds on trees and blossom.
I quite like winter, but when it gets to this stage, I’m ready for a change. I’m looking forward to more daylight and warmer weather, being able to go outside without a coat, and I’m usually bored of my winter clothes as well!
With the smell of spring in the air, I’m also ready to make things that feel more spring like. It’s still cold enough for woolly crafts and warm things, but the kind of colours I want to use are different. I want to use the spring colours that I can see emerging!
This can be a little bit tricky though. Choosing colours that work well together is harder than it seems!
Finding a Colour Scheme
One way round it to is to buy packs of yarn, or fabric, that have already been sorted out into a colour scheme. In the past, I’ve bought yarn packs for that very reason. All I’ve had to do is choose the colour combination I like the most, and I can be sure of getting colours that all go together.
This is fine, really it is, and it does make things a lot easier.
But sometimes, taking that kind of approach feels too much like painting by numbers. Sometimes I want to paint my own picture, and choose the colours myself!
Staring at piles of yarn or fabric can feel overwhelming though. Having a lot of choice can be too much of a good thing!
Having somewhere to start from to choose some spring colours from makes it easier, and one such place is with a photo.
Using a Photo
As a child of the 80s, I remember the days of using a camera with a film, having a limited number of exposures and then having to wait for 2 weeks to get the photos back, and finding that most of them were rubbish! Now we can take pictures all the time with our phones.
You might have some photos of spring pictures that you can use for spring colours already. They don’r necessarily have to be colourful, just pictures of things that make you think of spring will do.
If you don’t have anything, grab your phone and get outside!
Nature is always a good place for ideas. If you live in the country, there are probably lanes and patches of woodland. Round here, lots of the countryside is fields of crops, but there are also muddy footpaths and wild bits. And some of the crops are daffodils! If you live in a town, there will probably be trees, parks, botanical gardens, hedges and patches of waste ground.
Although having a photo narrows the options down, it can still feel like too much. There are often still a lot of colours and shades, and it can be difficult narrowing spring colours down to just a few.
So one thing I do, which I’ve talked about before, is to use photo editing software to pixelate the photos. That reduces the number of colours and the subtlety between the different shades, and turns the colours into blocks instead.
Using Photo Editing Software to Pixelate Your Photos
Pixelate Image Online is a free online program that I’ve used recently. It’s very easy to use. You select the image you want to use and it appears in the box. Then you click the button that says pixelate image. The pixelated version appears next to the original. The number of pixels can be adjusted by sliding the button along the bar where it says block size. when you are happy with the pixelated version, you click that button that says download and it will be downloaded to your computer.
Once you have a pixelated version of your photo, you can choose a few of the squares and use that as a starting point for colours for your project.
Here’s another photo I took while I was out wandering…
…and here’s the same photo with the image pixelated. Using Canva, I chose some of the colours to make a colour scheme.
I actually found that one wasn’t nearly enough, as it proved to be quite fun. In the end, I did this same thing to 15 different spring photos. I have them for sale as a PDF on Etsy. I have a little free version, of 4 of the photos, which you can have in exchange for an email address by filling in the form below.
Ideas For What to Do With Your Spring Colour Scheme
Plan an outfit
Make granny squares. There’s a pattern here. 4 is enough to make wrist warmers. A few more could become a bag or a cushion cover. Another idea if you tend to get bored of things quite quickly is to make different granny squares in the same colours. There are some ideas here.
Try an abstract embroidery project. You could try different stitches or patterns, or sew blocks in different colours.
Make quilt blocks. If a quilt is too daunting a project, the blocks can be used in other ways. Little ones can become purses and pincushions, and larger ones could be made into bags, cushions and hot water bottle covers.