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Colinette Sansbury Biography Photograph colinette yarns hand dyed yarn

The Colinette Journey Begins

Imagine a sun drenched white village on the Italian coast. There Colinette created a small

Atelier filled with gathered antique textiles, silks, chenilles, crepe de chine dripping with rich colours that immediately fired her imagination. Beautiful clothes were worked and created and they found their way to amazing shops in Rome, Milan and the USA.

But this was a long time ago. And the possibility to discover old fabric became more difficult. Colinette was twenty two years old and looking for a different way to navigate her love for textiles.

The time was the early 1970s and the world seemed awash with sickly chemical colours in Polyester and Nylon.

So an idea took shape to strip things back to the raw natural fibre. Initially it was a thick and thin merino wool yarn ( later called Point 5) which became the canvas for her colours.

By this time Colinette was living with a artist partner Geoff and they had two children to bring up.

So it was with Colinette’s flair for texture and colour and Geoff’s alchemical ability to mix any colour Imaginable, that the first chapter of the hand dyed yarn story began.

It was decided that only the best pigments in primary colours would be used. And in so doing the colours were kept fresh and vibrant. The only concession to this rule, was to add a black pigment to the colour library.  (Yes, we know from our art classes that all primary colours mixed together should produce black but hey-ho only sludge brown resulted!)

Often inspiration was taken from the great painters. Monet’s gentle pastels; Bonnard’s sultry hues and the deep and moody colours of the Renaissance that Raphael captured so well.

At that time all the dye pots were wonderfully random one offs. This of course suited Colinette free spirit and Geoff’s sensitive painterly skills.

However, it became clear that some sort of consistency in colour was needed,

and that is where the Book of Spells comes in. But that is another story.

There is more to tell and so the plot will unfold.