Reader's Gallery - Color Glorious Color!

Looking to end 2020 on the upswing, I decided to choose this group of scarves and shawls based on joyful colors!

Susan E. Horton Dec 30, 2020 - 6 min read

Reader's Gallery - Color Glorious Color! Primary Image

From the left, Glyn Ruppe Melnyk's Sisters Scarves, Gabi van Tassell's Celebration shawl, and Greta Holmstrom's Color Celebration shawl. All photos by the designers.

As I was thinking about this edition of the Reader's Gallery, I decided I wanted to do something joyful for the last one of the year, and that meant bold, bright colors. I started wondering if any of the entries were colorful, no not really... there was no need to wonder because the one thing I know about weavers, is that they love color! Here are 9 examples of weavers using color to great effect. Weave well and Happy New Year! - Susan

Designer Statements:

Glyn Ruppe Melnyk: As 3 sisters growing up in the 1950s, our mom made most of our dresses based on our favorite colors, and most often in plaids. These holiday Ruppe Sister's Scarves are based on those memories, especially of how we all adored the brightly colored lights on the Christmas tree. I planned the design and color placement as a demonstration of the way that our decidedly different personalities could blend together in a harmonious whole. The draft is an 8-shaft undulating twill by Lora Burgess and may be found at, draft #61537.

Gabi van Tassell: The shawl's message is celebrating happy times, and making them memorable. I designed it to commemorate two special anniversaries: Our first anniversary selling hexagon pin looms, and PieceWork magazine celebrating its 25th anniversary. Fellow crafters have made this shawl for special celebrations like family gatherings, weddings, and also to celebrate a special person or a special birthday.

Greta Holmstrom: Celebrating all the beautiful colors around us.

gorham, mongomery, applegate (1)

From the left: Debbie Gorham's Mix it Up!, Katherine Montgomery's Waste not, Want not, and Bob Applegate's Winter Warmth. Photos on the left and right by Bob Applegate, middle photo by the designer

Designer Statements:

Debbie Gorham: I challenged myself to weave scarves using very different fibers. I chose chunky mohair in red and black with variegated 8/2 "Big Red Combo" Tencel. The result I call my "stained glass scarves" because of the way the Tencel sparkles in the mohair. I used a 6-dent reed, sleying the Tencel at 4/dent and the mohair 1/dent. I wove plain weave with a light beat.

Katherine Montgomery: A few years ago a friend gave me a coat sweater she'd found at a thrift store. It was made from that thick sari yarn that was popular 10 to 15 years ago and it weighed a ton! I had recently taken a class with Judith Mackenzie on recycled fibers, so I unraveled the sweater and then unspun the yarn. I then carded the loose silk fibers and spun a finer yarn. I knit a scarf for my friend and wove this shawl as well as fabric for a long vest. I added some handspun wool yarn to the weaving for an accent. It was a lot of work, but nice to keep a bit out of the landfill.

Bob Applegate: I am a new weaver, under my wife's guidance. We come up with designs and colorways together with her excellent eye and my use of design software. This scarf came together out of my interest in doing something using a tartan design, and making use of some red and green wool/silk/cashmere blend yarn we found at a garage sale. Combined with our own white alpaca, I was very pleased with its festive seasonal look and I can tell you firsthand, it is very warm!

varrone, hoover, werrin

From the left, Faith Varrone's Joyous Color!, Debra Hoover's Happy Scarf, and Susan B. Werrin's Pure Optimism. Photos on left and right by the designers, the middle photo by Reneka Watkins of Resilient Design & Photograph

Designer Statements:

Faith Varrone: I handpainted the warp, a cotton-rayon blend, last spring when the realities of an existence with Covid shut things down, we were stuck inside, and life was looking rather bleak. I refused to give into the threatening depression, something I have battled throughout my life, and instead, chose to look at this time as an opportunity to create. Weaving this brilliantly colored warp left little room for dark thoughts and created hours of joy!

Debra Hoover: I love colorful, shiny things. I wove this scarf with 24 different colors of 10/2 pearl cotton. It was such a fun and easy weave. I based it on a class on iridescence that I took with Bobbi Irwin. The draft is a plaited twill and can found in A Weaver's Book of 8-Shaft Patterns edited by Carol Strickler, page 106, draft 381-4.

Susan B. Werrin: By using bright primary colors in this painted warp, the resulting woven pattern conveys pure optimism for a brighter new future.