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Mar 15, 2017

How to Create a 3-Stage Gradient

Light, soft and warm, Plumberry is one of my all-time favorite scarves. For years, this yarn languished in the stash, because it was so luscious I was terrified whatever I made wouldn't do it justice. I tested countless stitches and design ideas, and nothing seemed quite right.




After years of experimentation and false starts, I decided a basic three-stage gradient might be the solution and couldn't be more pleased with the result. The cashmere-silk blend is luscious, the colors suit my tastes, and as simple as it is, this scarf garners compliments every time I wear it.

The second example in the overview post, Ombres & Gradients: 5 Ways to Create Your Own, Plumberry features a strategy that's so straightforward, I almost skipped this post. But many knitters tell me they struggle with color and prefer step-by-step directions, so today we'll explore one way to create a custom three-color gradient.

2. Three-stage gradient: Plumberry Scarf



Yarn. Richesse et Soie (Knit One Crochet Too). Sadly, this yarn has been discontinued.

Stitch. The easy, fluted rib stitch produces a reversible fabric with fluted columns on the front and fluted ribs on the back.

Strategy. The cranberry and purple sections are worked solid, while the center plum section was created by working alternating two-row stripes. To achieve a similar look:

  • Choose two colors.
  • Work the first section with CC1 only.
  • Work the second section with CC1 and CC2.
  • Work the third section with CC2 only.
The strategy couldn't be easier, but with the right stitch, it produces very attractive results. For those who like specifics:
  • Section 1: Cranberry 9249
  • Section 2: Cranberry 9249, Purple 9713
  • Section 3: Purple 9713
The finished scarf is 4 inches wide and 60 inches long, so it offers lots of wearing options.

Because a basic three-color gradient works with any fiber or color combination, it's the perfect way to transform orphans, singletons and yes, shrine of precious yarns into something pretty and useful. 


The possibilities are endless. To create your own unique gradient or ombre, try pairing turquoise with soft blue for a summery look, turquoise and navy for a sophisticated one, or turquoise and teal for a vibrant one.

If you haven't done so already, take time now to rummage through your stash to see what interesting combinations you discover, then have fun and experiment with this easy but effective gradient strategy.



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2 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. How kind, Helen, thank you. The colors are a bit richer and deeper than they appear here, but I'm a big fan of red and purple combos of all sorts.

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