Frequently Asked Questions of Silk Ribbon Embroidery

e-Mail your questions and comments to Beth

Started: October 31, 2000 - Updated 6/11/09

Written by Beth-Katherine Kaiman, Main Fairy©2010, all rights reserved.

Q. What are the best colors of Green to use with pinks, reds and peachs?

A. Here is a list of which colors of green go with pinks, reds and peaches. I hope that you will look at the reasons why I think that THIS goes with THAT.

The numbers I am talking about are the colors numbers of YLI ribbon that I carry on my silk ribbon supplies web page Silk Ribbon (I have, by the way, added in a color card so you can have a looksee at the colors I am talking about - took a while to get the colors right but I'm still not happy at the resolution but it's close enough so you can see the differences I am going to talk about). Oh and I have just noticed that YLI has grouped the colors which go together onto their color card. I always wondered why they didn't have the colors of ribbons grouped numerically.

First thing that I think about is how natural I want my embroidery to look. If I am going for a completely natural look I will make sure that my greens are harmonious in dark to light tones with the dark and light flowers that I am to be working. The main thing that I hate to see is a green which clashes with the color of the flower, almost as bad as dissonance in music grates on your teeth (like Stravinsky - which if you listen to does after a while does start sounding good). That to my eye looks terrible and gaudy. Of course if you aren't going for the natural look then by all means have a good time but choose your colors well. Balance and harmony are the main things to think about when you are choosing color.

I alway try to keep my dark leaves with dark flowers and light leaves with light flowers. This is not always as it is in nature but I like it, so there. (hahahahahah just teasing mother nature.)

Column A: The first greens that we have to choose from are the Grass Greens of #s 94, 95 96 which, to my eye, go well with the hot pinks, reds and salmon tones of #'s 93 (A), 42, 43 & 136 (C).

YLI Color Card

Column B:  Next group of French Grey Greens are #31, 32, & 33. These go great with the dusty mauve tone pinks of #s 127, 128, 129 and 130 on column C as well as the dusty pinks #111, 112, 113 & 114 (column C - top) & #'s 87, 88 & 89 peachy reds on Column A. I will also use these greens with #'s 24, 25, 48, 49 and 50

Next on Column B we have the dark green #'s 61 which goes well with #50 burgundy red and #49 both of column B. For a Christmas look match this green with #2 red (A) and #28 red on Column E. Then we have the pale green #62 which looks nice with #111 and 112 dusty pinks (B). It also looks good with #166 peach (E) depending on the surrounding floral colors. The next greens are the first of the turquoise greens #'s 63 and 64 which look pretty with peachy tones rather than pink tones, with the exception of #24 (B) pink.

Column C: we have the strange green grouping of #'s 73, 74 and 75 which go well with the dusty pinks about them on C, and the deep dusty pinks of #'s157, 158 and 159 & 163 on Column D. These greens also look nice with lavenders. #75 is a rich dark green that I like to pair with #50 (B) and #49 both dark ruby reds and #130 on Column C.

Next green are the lettuce greens on Column C #'s 71 and 72. #71 is a strange color and I haven't used it very much as a green but have used it to augment my yellows and light browns. #72 is a deep olivey green which goes well with any deep peach or the rubys #49 & 50 (C). It also matches the greens #170, 171, 60, 20 and 21 and in a pinch can be used if you run out of #21 (E).

Column D:  Next we move into the olive greens of #'s 56 and 143. These are funny colors that you won't much see as leaves in nature but rather should be used as fillers in mountains colorings or mosses but they do go well with peach tones. In fact most olive greens go wonderfully with peach tones as a whole. I often find myself using them as branch berries or thorns on the browns of #150 and 151 (D).

Next on column D are the pale greens #'s 154 and 155. These lovely pastel greens are a delightful compliment with the pale pinks, #'s 5,6,7,8 (A) and the pale dusty roses/pinks of #'s 157, 160 & 162 (D). They also go well with the pale ivorys #1 (A) and #156 and peach #105 (B). (I prefer to use color #33 (B) with the dusty pink #163 (D) rather than #154 (D) green.)

Next are your staple greens #'s 18 and 19 (D). These go well with any true pinks and are used a LOT in kits and magazines. In fact for a while there I thought they were the only greens on the silk ribbon palette available but everyone was using them exclusively. They also look nice with the dusty roses and mauves on columns C and D.

Column E: Next batch are the rarely seen colors on , #'s 170, & 171. These olive tone greens go well with the peachs #'s 166,167, 168 (E) as well as some of the brown tones on Column C #'s 51, 42 53, 54 and 55.

Colors #60, 20 and 21 (Column E) again are some of the staple greens that you often see used. These greens go well with the reds #2 (A), 93 (A), & 28 (E). I like to use color 21 with #49 and 50 on Column B.

Ok that's some of my thoughts on colors.

Beth-Katherine Kaiman

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When I read this, it reminded me of a class I took with an Australian teacher and a couple of other women who were here from Australia with their husbands. They commented that until they came to the states they couldn't understand the color choices in American patterns that contained flowers. They thought they were unusually bright because the native plants in their home were of very different shades of greens. When they arrived here they were amazed to see how green the grass was and how intense some of the flowers were and could understand our color choices for embroidery better.


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