Tips & Tricks

Benzie Basics: Create Your Own Felt Palette



Here at Benzie Design, our Felt Color Palettes are some of our best selling items. From the cool tones of our popular Succulents palette, to the warm and earthy Boho Garden, our palettes help crafters who struggle with color selection feel confident that their projects coordinate. Have you ever wanted to make your own felt color palette but weren't sure where to start? This week, Maker Team member Chloe of @positivepennants walks us through color theory and how she finds inspiration to make her own custom color palettes! 

Benzie felt is SO colorful and there are so many color options that it can be slightly intimidating to pick which colors you want for your project. This blog post has a variety of starting points on how to solidify a beautiful color scheme for your project, because color is such a fun thing to craft with!

My name is Chloe and I’m the owner and designer of Positive Pennants. I graduated from Michigan State University with a Fine Arts degree and have been working in the design field since. Color is one of my favorite parts of creating!

The Basics

The color wheel. You’ve been seeing this wheel since you were in preschool and there is a good reason why - it’s really helpful. The color wheel is the basics of color theory and is used to visualize color relationships to create successful schemes. When deciding your color scheme, this diagram is helpful to reference and use as a guide. The color wheel above has each of Benzie's wool blend felt colors!

Terms to Know

Value: How dark or light a color is. 

Saturation: How vibrant a color is. 

High/Low Contrast: How well the colors, when put side by side, stay visually separate.

Using a Color Wheel

One of the more traditional ways to pick a color scheme for a project is using that trusty color wheel.

There are 6 common quick ways to find a successful color harmony for your project by using the color wheel:

Monochromatic: A singular color with a range of value (light tints or dark shades of singular color)

Complimentary: Very common, two colors that are across from each other on the color wheel. This combination almost always guarantees a contrast between the two colors.

Analogous: Three colors that are next to each other on the color wheel.

Triadic: Three colors that are placed equal distance around the color wheel

Tetradic: Four colors that are placed equal distance around the color wheel. A common use of this scheme is to choose out of the three a dominant color and the other as accents

Warm & Cool: The color wheel can be split in half by warm colors and cool colors. These two halves, according to color psychology, invokes different emotional readings. Warm colors (some purples, reds, oranges, and yellows) invoke passion, energy, and warmth. While cool colors (green, blue, and some purples) invoke calm, and serene feelings. 

Finding Color Inspiration in Your Life

Personally creating color schemes based on the life around me is my favorite way to find inspiration for a color scheme. There is so much natural beauty around us to help us pull color inspiration. The two most common ways I do this is by looking at famous artworks and pulling colors from them, and using my own photos.

Building a Color Palette from a Famous Artwork

These tried and true color palettes have already played a part in creating masterpieces, so using this method is a great way to get an eye catching palette. Plus, there are reasons we are drawn to pieces that we individually like, so a part of your artistic interest will be reflected your choice. Here's an example of a felt palette inspired by a Van Gogh painting!

Almond Blossom
Vincent van Gogh (1853 - 1890), Saint-Rémy-de-Provence, February 1890
Oil on canvas
Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam
Photo Credit: Van Gogh Museum

Building a Color Palette from Personal Photos

The more you create, the more your “style” comes out. For crafting, I noticed I was drawn to the same values - saturation levels of earthy colors. Looking at other aspects of my life (photographs I take, digital designs I created, my clothing, etc.) it became apparent which colors I would use for projects. But this isn’t a hard rule for me. I like to challenge myself and introduce a color that is outside of my normal palettes and find new interesting ways to create palettes around that color. Here are a couple of examples of felt palettes created from my life.

Ferris Wheel Felt Palette


Peach Felt Palette


Getting Color Inspiration from Benzie Design

If all of this is just too much, or you’re just starting crafting and don’t want to get hung up on color, don’t worry. Benzie Design has pre-made felt palettes to help you start your projects! There is also a swatch card that you can use to physically see all 90 wool blend colors and 24 Bellwether felt colors and overlay them to see how they would relate to each other in your final personal felt palette.

Hopefully with all these tools, you are starting to feel confident about building your own felt palette using Benzie felt!

Have fun crafting, my colorful friends!

All 24 colors of Benzie's 100% wool Bellwether collection

Thanks to Chloe for designing and writing this tutorial! You can follow her on Instagram @positivepennants or visit her website. Stay tuned for more Benzie Design Maker Team tutorials from Chloe and the rest of the Team!