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Colourful Guest Post :: Scrapping with Atypical colour combos

So happy that Miss Julie Kirk is joining us today for a look into her colourful creativity. Hope you enjoy Julie’s guest post!
-Shimelle

scrapbook page

Hi there, I’m Julie and, as anybody who has ever read my blog Notes on Paper will know, I have several main creative obsessions including: writing, scrapbooking and playing with colours. Anything which combines any of these brings me ridiculous amounts of pleasure … so you should probably imagine me smiling right now.

Whether it’s decorating my layouts, my home or myself through my clothes and accessories, I truly love to co-ordinate, combine, and clash colours trying to find interesting and unexpected combinations. At times I receive comments such as: “I’d never have combined those colours” or “those colours shouldn’t work together … but they do!”. Even when I was one of the Best of British Scrapbooking winners 2008, the judge described my colour choices being “right – but unexpected”. So, with all this in mind I thought I’d share the method I‘ve used when adding colour to my pages, the method which has acquired me comments such as those, which I’m almost 100% sure are meant to be complimentary! [Aren’t they?].

I attribute the success of some of my atypical colour combinations to two things:

always drawing upon the colours which already coexist within the photograph and
the subsequent repetition of these colours across the layout to achieve a varied yet cohesive colour-scheme across the page.

This photo, showing me battling through a crowd of fellow paper fanatics at a paper-craft show earlier this year, was the starting point for the colours I went on to use in the layout which I’ve photographed at various stages of development to show how I gradually built up a wide ranging colour scheme.

photo for a scrapbook page

1. I drew out the colour of the purse I’m clutching by using pink as my base colour and adding the pink vinyl ‘Rootbeer Float’ Thickers to the centre of my page. These matched the purse so utterly perfectly that they made this colour-matching obsessive very happy indeed!

scrapbook page

2. The bird-watching theme of my journaling led me to add the pink bird detail at the bottom of the page along with the snippet of bird / mushroom fabric. Seeing as this introduced several new colours to the page, I repeated the yellow and red in the tiny Adornit’s alpha stickers.

3. I’d now added three main colours to my page pink, red and yellow and while this may seem like plenty of shades for some … I always feel a little naked [or rather, I feel my pages are a little naked!!] until I’ve added at least one more. Which is where the bright teal came in:

scrapbook page

4. The strip of American Crafts ‘Teacher’s Pet’ was an indispensable addition which brought several elements together. Not only did it reflect the shade of teal from my bag strap and the birdcage fabric I’d included, its bright cerise reverse helped lift it from the pale pink backing and its leopard print design mirrored that of my scarf. A touch of animal print is welcomed both my wardrobe and my scrapbooking so it made an ideal paper choice for me!
5. The bird cage fabric had introduced more yellow which I balanced out with the further yellow touches of the button and the Sassafras Lass ‘Paper Whimsies’ duckling card. At this point the scheme was happily cohesive … but I wanted to push it a little bit further!

scrapbook page

6. I drew out yet another colour from the photo and do bear with me because this is an odd one. When I looked at the original photo, one colour that leapt out at me was the royal blue at the top right which, now I’ve had a closer look, appears to be a banner advertising Nestabilities dies! To satisfy my need for royal blue, I cut a cute little character from some Jon Burgerman designed wrapping paper and tucked her behind the fabric at the top then harmonised this with a strip of blue Dymo tape and blue Doodlebug ‘Simply Sweet’ alpha rub-ons in the bottom corner.

scrapbook page

7. Finally I grounded my colour scheme by adding two tiny touches of grey [one beneath the American Crafts paper and the other just above the teal button] to replicate the darker colours in the photo … in particular the grey of my jacket ..and here’s at how it all worked out:

scrapbook page

Yes there’s a bit of everything on there, yes some of the colours are less obvious choices than others …but it works for me. This is mainly due to the way in which many of the colours are drawn from the original photograph which is, after all, the main feature of the page. Then, as all of those colours were then repeated, no single item appears to be stranded or out of place.

Maybe next time you’re trying to find a colour combination for a layout you’ll give this method a try. If you’re already confident using colour, or are as obsessive as me, you could have great fun co-ordinating and clashing using your entire photo as your colour palette. If you’re not as convinced then perhaps select two or three colours initially and focus on repeating them until you achieve a balance across the page.
If you try this, and if your work starts attracting comments like ‘those colours really shouldn’t work …but they kind of, sort of do” then do give me a shout … us colour-crazies really should stick together!

Julie

16 June 2009



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3 Comments for Colourful Guest Post :: Scrapping with Atypical colour combos

  1. Amy Wing Says:

    Julie – another wonderful whimsical win! I, too, get comments about how my color choices shouldn’t work, but they do. I never know if people are just fluffing up my skirts of if they really mean it. I guess there’s no way to know unless I send in a spy. But I can tell you in 100% honesty – your color choices ROCK. :)

  2. Beverly Kim Says:

    Amazing. Thank you. Reinforces that there are no rules!

  3. SarahLP Says:

    Wow! I can really see what you mean.. so many colours, but the way you have placed the different elements make them look balanced. Lovely!!!

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