Are You a Rectangular Body Shape?Marianne Henio
You Are What You Knit
A Guide to Knitting for your Shape and Style
Are you a Rectangular Body Shape?
We spend hours with our knitting machines and needles, using all our experience, knowledge and skills to knit up our latest garment; whether it is a complicated structure and pattern or our hundredth scarf! Often we are knitting for others: family or clients; but when we are knitting for ourselves, wouldn’t it be great if we knew exactly what to knit for our body shape? This blog is about the Rectangular Body Shape.
In the last blog I looked at the Apple Shape. Now let’s have a look at the Rectangular Body Shape; also referred to as the Banana or the Ruler. It is probably the easiest to dress, hence it being the most common shape in catwalk models. But there are some tips I can give here.
The rectangular body shape has hips, waist and shoulders similar in width, the bust tends to be small or average, the bottom tends to be flat, and you have no defined waist. Your legs and arms will be your best assets. You will want to create curves with your clothes shapes and patterns and show off those great arms and legs. Highlight the smallest part of your waist to accentuate your hips and bust giving more of a curvy appearance.
If you have checked out your body and you are a rectangle then here are some tips and some suggested patterns.
- The biggest tip perhaps to start off with is to avoid having anything which is finished or cut off in direct line with the waistline. This is because we are attempting to emphasise hips and bust, not the waist.
- Need I say? As for the other shapes: wear a good bra.
- The area just under the bust is part of the body that DOES curve in, so emphasise it. The Empire line is great for this. The Sagittarius Top flares from this area emphasizing it and, at the same time, flares out to the hips giving the appearance of curves and a smaller waist.
- Add width to the shoulder creating curves to the upper body. This can be done with sleeves, shoulder details, maybe a bit of shoulder padding, and details to the upper half.
- Scoop necks and sweetheart tops create curves. Medium to high necklines work well, especially with a smaller bust.
- A halter neck top works well with a smaller bust and shows off your back – if you want to show it off!
- Tops with collars, ruffles, breast pockets, and other details will flatter your chest, making your waist look thinner in proportion. The Raggedy Ann Sweater has a scooped neck, sleeves, detail to the upper body, it plays with asymmetry, and flows out to the hips, all creating the illusion of a curvy figure.
Add interest to hipline:
- We don’t want clingy! Especially with knitwear. The A-line shape gives the illusion of hips.
- Drop waisted shapes are ideal. And asymmetry accentuates hip level.
- Flared out garments below the waist length give illusion of curvy hips.
- Tapered trousers create the illusion of fuller hips. Any shaped bottoms will work with the rectangle, although a slightly fuller pair will add shape to your body.
- Mini skirts, or knee length tapered skirts, and coloured tights add more shape to a straight body and show off your great legs, also highlighting any curves that you do have. Go for low to mid waisted, again avoiding the cut off at the waist.
- With both tops, dresses and bottoms, asymmetry, either in the cut or the pattern, is a miracle worker for the rectangle. It breaks the impression of a long, straight rectangle and I can’t stress this enough!
- The Aquarius Dress and Jacket and the Raggedy Ann Sweater are great examples.
Use colour and pattern to create illusion of curves:
- Strong blocks of colours can be used with great effect to create illusion and define your body shape. Stripes can be used too to give illusion of curves where they are needed.
- Use diagonals which cut through the waist such as cross-over tops, rather than lines which cut across the waist.
- Side cut outs in dresses are a great illusionary tactic. This can also be done with colour if you don’t want to bare flesh! – Dark on the outer edge, light down the middle creating curves.
- Use colours to exaggerate the top half and the bottom half.
- Patterns can also be played with – colour patterns or stitch patterns
- Long jackets slightly fitted at the waist, such as the Retro Jacket, will give the illusion of a more curvy body shape.
- If you do have a slight waist then you could accentuate it with a belted coat or dress, but this isn’t for the ‘no waist’ shapes.
- Layers work well adding more dimensions.
Lots to go on. I’ve listed some patterns below which would work without any adjustments. If this has been a useful blog then I’d love to hear your comments. Also, any suggestions for future blogs would be great! I’d love to hear from you. Please use the Comment space below.
- Vintage Red Jacket
- Vancouver Twin Set
- Georgie Skirt
- Boo Too Twinset
- Pretty & Plain Smock Top
- Cool Mint Smock Top
AND if you haven’t already requested my FREE GUIDE on ‘How to Design, Write & Convert your own Knitting Patterns’, as well as our free newsletter, then subscribe below. If you HAVE previously subscribed but want another copy of the FREE GUIDE, then use the Contact Us page and I will email one to you.