Ceramic Tile, Sock Yarn are Related in Mind That Seeks Color

A knitter smitten with chromatics finds curious symmetry between hand-painted merino and a Spanish-style roof.

I love color — so when I saw a house with a polychrome tile roof — I had to stop.

We had just left my sister's new apartment in Rye, N.Y., to find a place within walking distance to have lunch. It was my first time in Rye, and I was eager to discover its character. Our stomachs were growling, so my sister was annoyed when I paused in front of the house, my eyes fixed on its colorful roof.

“What are you doing?” she asked as I fumbled for my camera.

“I’m just taking a couple photos,” I said.

"Of, this house? It's a dump,” came her reply. My sister works in fashion where everything is picture-perfect.

To be sure, this place wasn't runway material. The paint was peeling freely on this rundown bungalow. It seemed abandoned. But I was drawn to the colorful roof. I’d never seen anything like it.

The little house reminded me of the old Italian two-story homes in Middletown’s North End — quaint, weathered places on small plots all painted the pastel colors of gelato — pistachio, peach, toasted almond and that chalky pink.

Here in downtown Rye, the tiles were haphazardly interspersed with rusty and brick-red ones, evergreen and charcoal. Somehow it worked to my eye. A roof done with that much care showed someone once cared deeply about this bungalo.

It wasn’t until I arrived back in Middletown a day later and downloaded my photos onto my computer that something clicked.

I was drawn to these colors because I had recently discovered — and admittedly become somewhat obsessed with — hand-painted fine-gauge Koigu Wool Designs Painter's Paletter Premium Merino yarns that expertly combine such a diverse palette so seamlessly that the resulting knitted item — slippers in my case — looked as natural as … well, nature.

First off, I knitted a pair of ballet slippers from a July 2011 Creative Knitting Magazine article in a harvest orange-brown.

Absolutely beautiful.

Once finished, I placed them carefully in a ziplock bag. Too afraid to soil them by … wearing them on my feet.

Next project? Churchmouse Classics Turkish Bed Socks. They are museum-worthy. Really, it’s not just me.

But what color to choose?

I hesitated in buying the green-based yarn you see here. It’s kind of … clownish or tropical fishy, I thought, as I clicked through the Kollage offerings online.

Live a little, I thought. Think of it as … makeup. Then it didn’t seem so harsh.

We all know a lipstick or eye shadow in the tube or pot may very well go on as a translucent wash.

So, back to the Spanish-inspired ceramic tile roof. Which KPPPM yarn do you think would perfectly match it? I’m thinking of knitting a close-fitting cap hat this time — the Smocking Beret pattern from "Luxe Knits: The Accessories" by Laura Zukaite.

She's Lithuanian, much like me — and my sister. Seems fitting, doesn't it?

Show us some love! Follow us on Twitter or like us on Facebook.

lewsil November 28, 2011 at 11:40 PM
Oh, how wonderful - another Koigu Merino lover! Wandering through its many colors and imagining a one-of-kind project result, I believe Koigu Merino encourages the occasional knitter to pick up those #2 dps and go crazy. I'm just finishing a pair of fingerless gloves and have a second pair in a different color combo ready to start. And in the wings awaits a hat pattern with stars and "lice." I can hardly wait.
Cassandra Day (Editor) November 29, 2011 at 01:16 AM
What a small world. I am seeking a fingerless gloves pattern for this sublime yarn! Wonder if you'd send me info at cassandra.day@patch.com?
Alice Straight November 29, 2011 at 05:25 PM
Don't know about KPMM, the colors remind me of Stonechat from Malabrigo.


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »