Hey Everyone, welcome back to Colourful Friday. Last week was all about monochromatic colour schemes which uses only one colour with many values of that one colour.  This week we are going to mix it up a bit and look at three colours.

Triadic Colour Scheme

A triad means three hence the triadic colour scheme is made up of three different colours.  These colours are spaced evenly around the colour wheel.  If lines were to be drawn between the three colours an equilateral triangle shape would appear.

Use the large triangle to create the triadic colour scheme

Use the large triangle to create the triadic colour scheme

On the centre of the colour wheel is an equilateral triangle to depict the triad scheme with each point of the triangle pointing to the colour that makes up that triadic colour scheme.

A close up of the triangle.

A close up of the triangle.

To use this triangle pick the first colour you want in the scheme and place the corner of the triangle with the arrow facing it.  Follow the lines down to the other two corners and there you have the other two colours for the scheme.

This colour scheme can make for a very powerful and eye-catching quilt even when the subdued values of the colours are used.  The key is to use many different values of each colour to create contrast as well as to keep it all balanced by having one of the colours take the lead role and the others supporting it.

Colour Star

If using the colour star as your colour tool then make sure to use the die with the spaces evenly spaced creating a triangle.

A triadic colour scheme using the appropriate die.

A triadic colour scheme using the appropriate die.

What is the most well known triad of colours?

That’s right, the primary colours – red, blue and yellow.

How many different triad schemes are there on the colour wheel?

All together the colour wheel and colour star are made up of  4 different triadic colour schemes.  Along with the primary colours, the secondary colours complete a scheme and the tertiary colours make up the other two schemes.

Secondary Colours – green, purple & orange


Tertiary Colours – orange/yellow, blue/green & red/violet

Tertiary Colours – yellow/green, blue/violet & red/orange

One set of tertiary colours.

I don’t believe that I have consciously made a triadic colour scheme quilt but now that I aware of these 4 triad schemes it just might have to happen one day when I have some spare time.

Happy Quilting!

Jen Transparent Signature