I recently purchased a wonderful new book, "Colour Confidence in Embroidery" by Trish Burr. It's one of those must-have books that we run into from time to time. I love playing with colour and have a decent knowledge of colour theory. But the techniques I use for choosing colours, whether it be for designs, or home decor or a flower garden do not start with colour theory. They may refer to it if something doesn't seem to be working, or something is missing. There is a quote by Henri Matisse  in "Colour Confidence" that sums it up nicely :
"My choice of colours does not rest on any scientific theory; it is based on observation, on feeling, on the experience of my sensibility"
I've only begun to use the book but I can see that it will be one that I'll refer to often. Working with basic DMC floss, Trish Burr uses actual stitched samples to take us through over 175 colour combinations, as well as over 120 samples of the use of colour compliments. There are over 20 pages of creative colour schemes with such imaginative names as "Under the Tuscan Sun" or "The Devil Wears Prada".
She gives us lots of wonderfully useful hints, such as :
"Highlight colours are not pure white but rather a very pale shade of the main colour plus a hint of the reflected colour. Sunlight reflected onto an object would give the colour a hint of yellow whereas a bluish light on a cloudy day would result in a grey tint."
Then there are twelve step-by-step projects illustrating different colour usage, ranging from florals such as the "Iris Spartan" to bird portraits such as the "Sacred Kingfisher". The illustrations from cover to cover almost turn this into a coffee-table book. Even non-stitchers will be thrilled to browse through it.
Usually I like to see a book first-hand before I buy it but this one was sight-unseen and I couldn't be happier!



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The Embroiderers' Association of Canada (EAC) is a national non-profit educational organization whose purpose is to have a fellowship of persons who enjoy needlework and wish to learn and share their knowledge; and thereby to work towards maintaining higher standards of design, colour and workmanship.

Our aim is to preserve traditional techniques and promote new challenges in the Art of Embroidery through education and networking.

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