Colour curation: Armadillo
Starting out with all the colours in the rainbow, refining the Armadillo palette to 12 select shades wasn’t an easy task - but the final colourways are a truly perfect reflection of mid-century made modern. We spoke with Ruth Greenup, Senior Designer at Camira, to learn about her colour curation process; how she decided which shades made the cut, which didn’t, and why.
How many shades were on the table when you first began?
We started out with 240 options! There were so many possibilities that we wanted to explore with Armadillo that it was really important to the curation process that we realised them before deciding which colours we’d pursue and take through to the final palette.
How did you end up with so many?
Well, we’d start out with a core shade that we were keen to include– for instance a red – and use this as the warp (the fine yarn running down the fabric). We’d then introduce different coloured wefts (the fine and chunky yarns running across) to create the lovely tri-colour composition present in Armadillo, and see which combination resulted in the perfect shade, so just developing one colourway involved dozens of trials and swatches!
What are your key considerations when choosing colour?
Well, the Risom collection was different to usual because, for Armadillo in particular, we were primarily focused on remaining true to Jens’ palette of just 9 select shades. After all, through this collaboration we are paying homage to his textiles, reimagining them and bringing them to life for a new era, so we never wanted to stray too far away from the originals (it also helps that he had a great eye for colour!).
So, you might notice that there aren’t any pastels or pales in Armadillo, and that was a very deliberate choice – we certainly experimented with them, but the overwhelming desire was to echo the characteristics and personality of its mid-century predecessor with its rich, deep, often earthy, tones, and it’s these colours that you’ll see in the final 12. In fact, if you hold the original sample material against our own, you can see just how closely we have emulated Jens’ own Armadillo.
Having said that, we were very aware that we were designing a fabric for now, so we always wanted to make sure that we developed the tonality of the shades to be perfect for today’s commercial interiors and, influenced but not dictated by current trends, the final palette is a timeless blend of mid-century made modern.
Does the texture of the fabric come into play when creating colourways?
Absolutely. Particularly with a fabric like Armadillo which is so rich in texture, we have to be mindful of which yarns will create the greatest relief (essentially the extent to which the warp and weft is raised from the fabric, so the greater the relief the more textured it will feel) and this then feeds into our colour options and choices.
Finally, what’s your favourite Armadillo shade?
If I had to pick, I’d have to say Guard AM009, because the beautiful blend of bright, teally blue and the natural, earthy, grassy greens creates a gorgeous shot effect when the fabric is draped.