Thursday, November 10, 2011

Classic Color Wheels

It's no secret that I'm not a big shopper.  I used to be a retail designer in my previous life pre-kids, and as such, I spent so much of my life in stores, that they are not my place of choice for unwinding... even now I get distracted by the details; "why did they put that light there?" and so on.

Regardless, I was in my local mega-mall for some emergency supplies, and as I was heading up an escalator towards the exit a Vintage Books "21st birthday" display caught my attention.  The poster (a sort-of copy is on the Australian distributor's link above), was of a beautiful colour wheel of 21 contemporary fiction novels.  I went back down the escalator (the down one; I'm not totally crazy!) and popped in for a closer look.  I had actually read about half of the chosen 21 books over my lifetime, which was wildly reassuring, but there were so many on my one-day list, that for the bargain price of roughly $12 each I decided to buy a couple.

McEwan's "Atonement" was in the prettiest shade of aqua, but I've read that one, so I settled on a lovely sky-blue version of Faulk's "A Week in December" and a jade-green copy of "Star of the Sea" by O'Connor.  Perhaps selecting books by the colour of their cover is a strange approach... or perhaps not; I'll let you know when I get around to reading the books!

Enough of books - craft time.  Inspired by the book colour-wheel and my recent post on the "scrappy-craft" project my kids made me, here's a tutorial on the colour wheel I made for Mimi's bedroom wall when she was a baby;


  • Trace a large circle with a plate onto cardboard.
  • Trace a smaller circle into the middle (use a ruler to mark it out to get it as close as possible to the middle - but if it's off centre that's ok too.)
  • Fold the shape in half to cut the circle out, or use a pin to poke a hole in the middle and then push your scissors through and cut the inner-circle out.
  • Divide the shape into 8 roughly equal sections with a pencil, and write the names of the colours down (I know there's only 7 colours in the rainbow, but I always give aqua it's own space between blue and green.)
  • Using snippets of old magazines, wrapping paper, or construction paper, start to paste a collage of the colours into place.
  • With a pair of scissors, trim the inner and outer edges.
  • Done; your rainbow-circle is ready to hang!


I did this project for my kids, but there's no reason you can't get them to make this colour-wheel on their own.  You could also make it a party craft project (perhaps without worrying about taking out the inner circle.)  Why not make two the same size and stick them onto each other and then suspend the double-sided spectacular from the ceiling, or follow the same approach outlined above but use all green papers and turn it into a Christmas wreath... choices, choices!

If you have any colour wheel art you love; email me!

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

cant wait to start making one of these cool looking wheels

Partycraft Secrets said...

great - feel free to send me a photo of the finished product! best wishes, Linda.

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