Red • Jan Beaney & Jean Littlejohn

The color Red in its many shades and hues provides the focus for a range of inspirational samples from diverse and unexpected sources.



Reds can be rich or subtle, intense or delicate but in their strongest forms they are undoubtedly dynamic and have had great impact on many cultures.

red → digital edition (download immediately)

Red is one of the three primary colors. Mixed with blue it becomes purple and with yellow it makes orange plus many variations between depending on the proportions of each color mixed together. With the addition of black and white to create shades and tints an enormous choice can be assembled.

The pomegranate oozes juicy voluptuousness and can be an exciting source of inspiration. It has associations with ancient
symbolism and some believe it was the original ‘forbidden fruit’ in The Garden of Eden rather than an apple and in the Middle Ages it was known as pomuni granatum or seeded apple.

A close look will reveal that the tough outer skin is pocked and textured and displays a fantastic assortment of pinks, reds, ochres
and deep maroons with hints of burnt orange.

Keeping a red sketchbook helps to focus observations and discover amazing reds in different objects and locations and the plant world is still one of the most inspiring sources of pattern, form and structure.

The opposite and complementary color to red is green. In many of the sketches and samples shown, green is evident and acts as a foil to highlight and show red to great advantage. Equal amounts of the two colors can result in a pulsating effect as often seen on Christmas wrapping paper.

By focusing on the color RED it is hoped that your awareness of
this color will be sharpened so that new design ideas may be
generated and that some of the facts, thoughts and symbolism
mentioned may stimulate curiosity to research further. 

As well as general observations of this color in everyday life, the
color red can stimulate emotional responses, which could lead to the creation of abstract interpretations.

red → digital edition (download immediately)

BOOK 19 by Jan Beaney & Jean Littlejohn – Digital Edition

The colour Red in its many shades and hues provides the focus for a range of inspirational samples from diverse and unexpected sources. Readers will be helped to record observations and, from these, create their own stunning pieces of work.

28 pages full color illustrations – digital edition
First published by Double Trouble Enterprises 2007 – this edition 2023
ISBN 978-0-9546014-9-2

Jan Beaney & Jean Littlejohn • About the Authors

Jan Beaney Jean Littlejohn Bw

Jan Beaney and Jean Littlejohn are internationally acclaimed textiles artists, authors and educators. For more than forty years the duo know as “Double Trouble Enterprises” has been challenging traditional notions of embroidery and stitch by working with soluble fabrics, mixed media, bonding, printing, embellishing and collage and extensive use of color development and journaling to great success. Founding members of the 62 Group of Textile Artists, featured instructors at Callaway Gardens School of Needle ArtsCity & Guilds (London), Fellows of the Society of Designer Craftsmen (UK)  and Presidents emeritus of the Embroiderers’ Guild (UK), Jan and Jean continue their work in inspiring stitch artists of all ages with print books, digital books, and a wide range of DVDs and streaming workshops.

Learn more about Jan and Jean in their interview with

Visit their Double Trouble Enterprises Website