How to Make Colorwork Knitting Patterns Using GIMP

How to Make Colorwork Knitting Patterns Using GIMP - cozyrebekah.wordpress.com

I love doing colorwork knitting. When I was younger, I learned how to do pixel art and grew quite fond of it, and colorwork knitting is like pixel art that’s made out of yarn.

Because of the similarities between pixel art and colorwork knitting, I find it really easy to create colorwork patterns using a computer.

The program that I use to create pixel art and knitting patterns is called GIMP, which stands for Gnu Image Manipulation Program. It is completely free to use and works on multiple platforms such as Linux based platforms, OS X, and Microsoft Windows.

You can download GIMP here: https://www.gimp.org/downloads/

Once you have it downloaded, open it up. You should see this, or something quite similar:

How to Make Colorwork Knitting Patterns Using GIMP - cozyrebekah.wordpress.com
GIMP when first opened

Go to the left hand corner of the window and click on file, then go new. This will create a new empty image for you to work on. For a small project, an 800 x 600 px image will work well. If you find you need a larger canvas, try 1600 x 1200 px or 2400 x 1800 px.

When creating the new image, underneath the section where you can set the width and height, there are two buttons. Those toggle between portrait and landscape mode.

How to Make Colorwork Knitting Patterns Using GIMP - cozyrebekah.wordpress.com
Creating a new image in GIMP

Once you have made your new image, click on Filters at the top of the window, go down to Render, and from there go to Pattern and choose Grid. A window will pop up, asking you to choose the settings for the grid.

The only settings you’ll need to change are the spacing settings. Underneath the spacing settings there is a little chain. Click it to break the chain and then set the spacing to 20 x 24 px. After you’ve done that, click OK.

How to Make Colorwork Knitting Patterns Using GIMP - cozyrebekah.wordpress.com
Creating a grid in GIMP

Now you have a grid to make your pattern on!

How to Make Colorwork Knitting Patterns Using GIMP - cozyrebekah.wordpress.com
A created grid in GIMP

The next thing you can do is choose the colors that your pattern will be made out of. Go to your toolbox window and click on the colors.

How to Make Colorwork Knitting Patterns Using GIMP - cozyrebekah.wordpress.com
Choosing colors in GIMP

A window will pop up which will let you choose the color you want to use. You can use the sliders to adjust the hue, saturation, and value of the colors.

How to Make Colorwork Knitting Patterns Using GIMP - cozyrebekah.wordpress.com
Changing colors in GIMP

For the first color, I’ll go with a soft green.

How to Make Colorwork Knitting Patterns Using GIMP - cozyrebekah.wordpress.com
A green color

For the next color, I’ll go with a pretty lavender.

How to Make Colorwork Knitting Patterns Using GIMP - cozyrebekah.wordpress.com
A lavender color

To toggle between the colors you’re using, click the arrows beside the colors on the toolbox.

How to Make Colorwork Knitting Patterns Using GIMP - cozyrebekah.wordpress.com
Switching colors in GIMP

Next, select the Fill Bucket in your toolbox window. This will allow you to fill in the sections of your grid by clicking on them. If you ever make a mistake while working you can hit Ctrl and Z on your keyboard to undo what you did.

GIMP 11
Selecting the fill bucket

As you can see, I’ve made a border using the lavender color:

How to Make Colorwork Knitting Patterns Using GIMP - cozyrebekah.wordpress.com
A lavender border

Now I’m going to fill the inside with green:

GIMP 13
Filling in with green

Now that I’ve done the green, I’m going to make a flower pattern using the lavender again:

How to Make Colorwork Knitting Patterns Using GIMP - cozyrebekah.wordpress.com
Flower pattern

If you want to use more than two colors, you can choose a new color, and then switch between your recently used colors by clicking on the palette here:

How to Make Colorwork Knitting Patterns Using GIMP - cozyrebekah.wordpress.com
Recently used colors

Don’t forget to save your work frequently by clicking Ctrl and S!

If you ever find that your canvas is too small after you start working, you can go to Image and then Canvas Size to set a new size for your canvas.

After you’ve done that, reset your foreground color to black and your background color to white, and then go to Layer and click Layer to Image Size.

Then you can redo the grid by putting the grid filter on again. Make sure that the spacing is 20 x 24 px and then click OK.

Now you have a larger image that you can work with.

If you ever need to adjust the magnification levels of the image, you can use Ctrl and the scroll wheel of your mouse to do so.

If you found this post helpful, consider leaving a like or comment, or sharing it on social media.

I blog every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, so check back soon for a new post.

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