Paper dolls

Last weekend I had fun playing paper dolls in Sally Melville’s Knitting to Flatter and Fit class at Madrona Fiber Arts Winter Retreat.

The half day class was packed with lots of information but what stuck with me the most was her emphasis on maintaining or tricking the eye into see a hour glass shape.

Sally illustrated her points by having us dress our 1/8 scale silhouette with various garments.

Here are some of my “paper dolls”.

Shaped long sweater:

She said that longer shaped sweaters look better than shorter ones.  This idea really runs contrary to what I’ve always believed.  I have a tendency to make most of my sweaters (shaped or unshaped) somewhere above the fullest part of my hips in an effort not to accentuate my hips. But Sally says, “the best way to make something look smaller is to cut it in half.”

Unshaped short sweater:
This is the length I normally make. But according to Sally a short unshaped sweater is not flattering with these type of pants. The hour glass shape is lost and the eye is drawn to the hips.
Unshaped short sweater with Palazzo pants:
I’ve never worn these type of pants. Not sure if I’d look good in them. Sally says unshaped short sweaters look much better with these pants because the fullness  of the pants helps the eye see an hour glass shape.
Unshaped short sweater over a long shaped shirt: Sally mentioned that a short top can be worn over a longer one to help maintain an hour glass shape.

So many interesting concepts. Sometimes I think this type of thing is more of an art than a science. Not all of us could see what she was seeing.  One thing I did see was that I really should make my shaped sweaters longer and cut my hips in half.

I look forward to seeing her new book that’s coming out next March.

And here’s what I have on the needles … a boxy Aran sweater.


4 thoughts on “Paper dolls

  1. Aloha! As intimidating the homework was for this class was, it seems like it was full of useful information! I’m agree with Joni, you look great in anything…no need to worry about boxy!
    Your aran looks wonderful. I’ll have to finally tackle it when I get home!


  2. I meant to say hi to you in that class! I was unfortunately VERY disappointed in the class. I wanted to learn how to make knits that fit and flatter. Instead we made paper dolls? I guess I wanted to learn tricks to making patterns fit for our body types and not learn what kind of clothing my body type should wear. *sigh*


  3. Your aran design is fabulous. It’s breathtaking!
    The Melville examples are problematic. I am having deep trouble in credulity, primarily due to the example colors. Colors can be a cheat. I agree that cropped sweaters are best left to pre-teens. Long, warm, quality-knits are my mantras.
    Melville, meh. But I’m a huge fan of your aran design. I’m looking forward to seeing how your latest Nihon sweater turns out.


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