Mystery knit- and crochet-alongs are a lot of fun–you get to meet new people, learn new techniques, and make an afghan–but they can seem daunting when you’re tasked with finding the perfect shades of yarn for a big project you haven’t seen yet. Don’t worry: we’re here to help! Today on the Bernat Blog we’ve asked some very special guests to help you choose the best Waverly for Bernat shades to suit your Waverly for Bernat mystery afghan!
Before we begin, let's look at what you need for your afghan.
Anthony Noberini, Design Director for Home at Waverly, discusses Waverly’s history, “lifestyles” and how to choose the lifestyle that’s right for you. Zoe Nemetz, Home Product Designer at Waverly, will show us photographs of various living rooms and how to choose shades for your afghan so you pick the perfect colors to complement your home!
If you’re new to our Waverly for Bernat Mystery Knit-along and Crochet-along, visit us on the Bernat Forums for information on how to get started!
Bernat Blog (BB): Can you tell us a little about the history of Waverly?
Anthony Noberini (AN): Waverly has always been a premier decorator brand, established in 1923. Close to 89 years later, we continue to produce great designs, fantastic fabrics, and we are still known as one of the most important design houses for innovation and affordable fabrics.
BB: The Waverly for Bernat yarn shades were chosen to perfectly match specific Waverly fabrics. Why did Waverly decide to expand into the yarn world?
AN: Our strength in color palettes is one of the reasons why we decided to move into the yarn market. We wanted to work with a leader in the industry that can offer the consumer the option of color coordination, suitable for any decor. We want to offer knitters and crocheters the option of creating additional decorative products, handcrafted by themselves, in our up-to-date color palettes. Whether it's an afghan, knit throw, accessory pillow, or craft project with the kids, we want the consumer to feel confident and comfortable with their color choices.
BB: Waverly fabrics and Waverly for Bernat yarns are organized into “lifestyles.” What are these, and why does Waverly organize its products this way?
AN: Our lifestyles are a simple way of describing the Waverly home decor styles. We all have very different tastes when it comes to our homes and decorating, so we have captured six 'themes' or 'looks' and most of us fit into a particular category.
BB: Currently Waverly for Bernat offers four lifestyles: Past Perfect, Beautiful Things, Town and Country, and Simplicity. What inspired them, and what sort of person do you envision using each?
AN: The visions behind the individual lifestyles are simple. We are focusing on four key lifestyles for the moment with Waverly for Bernat.
We start with Past Perfect, which represents a vintage chic ideal. Linen, cotton blends, fabrics that have a worn, 'broken in' quality, can be found in the Past Perfect lifestyle. The print quality on the fabrics often has a distressed look to create an aged feel to the design.
This consumer is a bit more casual and laid back, and they want their environment to feel comfortable and familiar. When describing this lifestyle I always say, think of that favorite, comfortable, weekend sweater you like to wear. This lifestyle should give you the same feeling!
Next is Beautiful Things, a lifestyle which leans heavily on the floral theme. Many of these florals can feel classic, but of the late, we have been developing newer looks, such as floral designs in watercolor techniques and more impressionistic florals. We have been pairing these florals with crisp stripes and more graphic prints to create an updated look.
This consumer is more traditional; she tends to be feminine and romantic in her decorating choices.
Town and Country is one of my favorite lifestyles. Here we explore the richness the brand has to offer. The color palette is very rich, deep and jewel in tone; more regal tones come to mind for Town and Country.
The consumer again is classic in their home style, but more opulent in their decor decisions.
Simplicity explores the complete opposite end of the spectrum from Town and Country. This is our pure, zen lifestyle. Cotton blends, linen-like weaves, and nature-inspired prints, such as leaves and branches, call this lifestyle home. Neutrals and calming, soft hues in pale mist blues, soft celadons and neutrals round out the color story for this lifestyle.
This consumer wants a serene abode, where the hectic, chaotic part of their lives is left at the door; they want to enter into a peaceful, calming sanctuary.
BB: What are some of the initial considerations that should go into selecting shades for a room?
AN: There are many considerations that go into selecting colors for your rooms and it can become overwhelming if you allow it to. Ask yourself: do you like a more classic/traditional design, or do you lean more modern? Do you like both styles mentioned and feel your eclectic side suits you best? There is no wrong answer and you must feel comfortable in your home! When selecting shades for a room, choose tones that make you feel good. Modern spaces don't have to be filled with bright colors, and traditional spaces don't need to be all neutral.
BB: How do you create and use 'mood' in a room?
AN: Balance and contrast work well when creating 'mood' in an environment. Dark tones can look great with an accent of a bright color or a soft, pale neutral. Some simple solutions to create 'mood' are using various tones of the same color to create a tranquil environment.
Various shades of white can create a clean, tranquil feeling. Make sure the white tones aren't too bright or cool, no one likes a too sterile looking environment! Classic colors having the same grayness can create a wonderful, comfortable living space.
These projects should be enjoyable, so have fun with them and don't stress!
Choosing Shades From a Room
BB: Zoe Nemetz gives us some great tips on how to match the shades of yarn to colors in a room. She shows us some living rooms and the shades she would pick for matching afghans, and lets us know what inspired each shade!
If you were to use the recommended shades for each afghan, the shade ratio would look like this:
These are the general "feels" of each shade.
Main Color (MC) 55008 Birch White - Background color
Contrast A (55200 Aqua Frost - Main color story. A, B, and C should work well together.
Contrast B (55630 Butter) - See A.
Contrast C (55010 Colonial Beige) - See A.
Contrast D (55290 Turtle Green) - Accent shade. Should contrast A/B/C and not be too close in value and shade to them.
Contrast A (55500 Porcelain Red) - Highlight shade. It is possibly one of the most prominent shades in the afghan, and will also be used as the border to frame the afghan.
Contrast B (55425 Bitter Rose) - B, C, D, and E are intended to be "mellow blends." They should go well with each other and contrast nicely with A. The effect of all these shades together is the look of a time-worn quilt.
Contrast C (55615 Sundrift) - See B.
Contrast D (55460 Pink Suede) - See B.
Contrast E (55250 Irish Moss) - See B.
With that in mind, we've made images with Zoe's recommended shades so you can see exactly how much of each will be used in the afghans.
Rooms with a 'Waverly' Feel (Knit)
Zoe Nemetz (ZN): The lifestyle most associated with this living room would be Town and Country. The color and mood of the room reflect the Town and Country color palette and create a warm and inviting environment with a classic feel.
To choose shades for this room, use the décor already in the room and draw inspiration from the colors by pulling out key accents.
Contrast A: 55014 Stone Brown. The main color using the wall paint color and the overall colors in the room.
Contrast B: 55135 Classic Navy. B and D are colors that work well with Contrast A.
Contrast C: 55011 Antique.
Contrast D: 55540 Gypsy Gold. A perfect addition as it lightens up the room and is placed in key spots in the room - the couch, floor, and lighting.
Contrast E: 55530 Tibetan Red. An accent shade drawn from the accent pillows.
Rooms With Many Colors (Knit)
ZN: Based on the use of decorative accents throughout the room and the wall color, the lifestyle associated with this living room would be a combination of Beautiful Things and Town and Country.
To choose shades from this room, use the most prominent décor as a starting point. Then pick up smaller accents that add to the atmosphere.
Contrast A: 55640 Gypsy Gold. Featured on the walls, it’s the most prominent color in the room.
Contrast B: 55500 Porcelain Red. Accents throughout the room. Found on the chair cushions and decorative accessories.
Contrast C: 55615 Sundrift. Works well with the room and doesn't overpower, found in the sofa's color.
Contrast D: 55011 Antique. Accents throughout the room, see Contrast B.
Contrast E: 55135 Classic Navy. Accent shade that brings the room together with a dark pop of color.
Rooms With Minimal Color (Crochet)
ZN: The mood of the room is simple and serene and is most associated with Simplicity. Since the palette is simple, look for the colors that pop against the neutrals. The pillows, greenery, and artwork all have decorative elements.
Main Color: 55008 Birch White. The main color of the room is white, a logical choice for the main color of the afghan.
Contrast A: 55200 Aqua Frost. A, B, and C all work nicely together without competing. The shades are drawn from the accent pillows.
Contrast B: 55630 Butter. See above.
Contrast C: 55010 Colonial Beige. See above.
Contrast D: 55290 Turtle Green. A strong accent shade, the greenery in the room adds a pop of color and works well with the room.
BB: Thank you very much, Zoe and Anthony, for taking the time to give us these shade-hunting tips!
Hopefully you (the reader!) will now feel confident enough to choose your own shades. If you need help visualizing the shades together check out My Palette, and if you aren't finding the perfect combination, we have a list of recommended shade combinations for each lifestyle in knit (PDF, 140KB) and crochet (PDF, 150KB)! Come on over to the Bernat Forums, where we'll be talking about our shade choices! Share with us what you chose, and get to know some of the other participants.
1/17/12 Editor's note: The crochet percentage previously posted was incorrect; there is more of the Main Color and less of Contrast D than previously stated. We apologize for this error and the images have been fixed. This image had no influence on the number of balls required, so the afghan yarn requirements remain the same.