ncharshaf handmade Adventures of a self taught bookbinder


Using Color Theory to Create a Cohesive Treasury

I only recently started creating treasuries, but I really love doing them. It gives a fantastic excuse to browse through etsy and discover new things, and I have also found that they are a unique way to express my creativity in a whole new way.

As a designer, color is extremely important to me, and I love creating a feeling, mood, or story using color, and treasuries are a great way to play with color.

So, before I show the treasury, I thought I would go over some basic color ideas, if this excites you like it does me, you can dive pretty deep into the rabbit hole...but for now lets keep it on the simpler side.

The color wheel:

Important terms (don't worry, no test!)

Primary colors: These are the colors that all other colors are created with

Red, Yellow, and Blue

Secondary colors: These colors are created by mixing two primary colors together

Orange, Green, and Purple

Tertiary colors: these colors are created by combining a primary, and a secondary color together.

Red-Orange, Yellow-Orange, Yellow-Green, Blue-Green, Blue-Purple, Red-Purple

Warm Colors: Reds, Oranges, and Yellows

Cool Colors: Greens, Blues, Purples

Hue: The color

Tint: Adding white to a color creates a tint

Tone: Color Adding gray to a color creates a tone

Shade: Color Adding black to a color creates a shade

Value: The lightness or darkness of a color.

Color Schemes:

There are some basic groupings of colors that are great guidelines for creating successful color schemes

Monochromatic: Using a variety of tones, shades, and values of the same color.

Complimentary: Using two colors that are opposite of each other on the color wheel

Analogous: Using three colors that sit side by side to each other on the color wheel

Triadic: Using three colors that are equal distance apart on the color wheel.

Split Complementary: A variation on a complementary color scheme, picks the two colors adjacent to the complementary color.

With all of this in mind, I wanted to create a treasury that celebrated both Fall, and winter, which was a unique way to explore both warm, and cool colors with an emphasis on natural colors.

I looked for items to snuggle up in: hats, and scarves, reasons to snuggle up: books, and tea, as well as things to dress up in for upcoming holiday parties: jewelry and accessories.

Here is what I came up with:

I went with a natural base color of rich browns and grays to help unite and ground the selections. Most of the items contain some form of these two colors. (Keep in mind, I do not only look inside the item itself to build my color palette, for me the entire image is extremely important to if I will use the item or not).

I then chose a triadic color scheme of the three primary colors to use for accent colors, this creates an exciting color scheme, but it still feels very unified.

color diagrams from:


New photos: A sneak Peak

Moving this time around has been quite an interesting experience. We moved all of our stuff in, and then slowly started moving my boyfriends parents out. They have given us the pretty cool opportunity to live in their house while they move into a smaller fixer upper and work their renovation magic. My boyfriends mom has a ton of odd old things passed down to her from her father, and not all of it can fit into their new place, so for now I get to keep it!

This got especially exciting today when I decided to start re-photographing my books. I started out with a crazy old typewriter which i was totally excited about. I photographed all of my books in multiple positions,  (254 photos) loaded them up, adjusted one, and then let it be for a bit.

Then I was leaving, and something on the bookcase caught my eye. A bundle of over-sized wooden crayons. Regardless of the time spent photographing the previous set of photos, I knew I needed to rephotograph the books with these crayons.

I am in love with these crayons. They are a wonderful mixture of nature mixed with bold, bright colors. I think that those two things sum up my aesthetic pretty well, and while photographing the colors in the crayons helped bring out the vibrancy in the prints of the book.

I will be cropping and editing these, and then doing a massive shop update! Here is a little sneak peak.


Etsy Holiday Boot Camp

Last Saturday I moved, and every time that I move my goal is to reorganize, and refocus. Life has been pretty crazy the past few months, I have been in a creative flurry trying out all sorts of new things. It has been exciting, frantic, and chaotic...and tons of fun. However, I feel that in the flurry of my first season of local craft shows, connecting with other local artists, helping run a handmade group, and working in collaboration with other business owners to bring fun and creative events to Redding, my etsy shop has taken a back seat.

So, I feel that it is time to start to nurture and expand my etsy shop with some of the ideas that are floating through my head. I am a bit late to the party (I blame the move) but I have decided to participate in the Etsy Holiday Boot Camp.

So, here it goes!

I, Nicole Charshaf, pledge to participate in the Etsy Success Holiday Boot Camp to the best of my abilities. I vow to check in every week, do my homework and support my fellow Holiday Boot Campers. I will read the weekly newsletters and blog posts, check in on the weekly forum thread, read the weekly blog post, check off the checklists and salute the mascot. I promise to share what I've learned with those who need it, support my fellow Etsy indiepreneurs and, most of all, have a positive and persistent attitude. I understand that together we can spread the word about our handmade and vintage goods, making this holiday season a more unique and meaningful one to gift givers and give-ees everywhere!

Tagged as: , No Comments