In honor of the (very) few spaces left in my class at Purlescence Yarns in lovely Sunnyvale, CA this coming weekend, I thought I’d share with those of you who haven’t been what we cover in my Fit to Flatter Classes.
First things first: These classes don’t provide a strict set of “rules”, and I’m not the what-not-to-wear lady. My goal is to help students understand how to go about knitting a sweater they’ll love. And there are really two components to loving a sweater. It has to fit properly, of course. And we cover that in spades. For many of us, it also means that the sweater highlights the things we love about ourselves while minimizing the things we don’t like so much. In turn, for lots of people that means making our bodies appear more like some mythical “norm” drilled into us on a daily basis.
So the first part of each class is going through some in-person, open-to-questions instruction on some basic principles: Different body shapes and various kinds of curves, and how our clothing changes the way our shape looks to other people.
The second part of the class involves a personalized application of this knowledge to each student: I take a (sans-head) picture of each person’s shape on a digital camera, and print them on a portable printer. While the pictures are printing, I lead everyone through taking a variety of body measurements aimed at allowing the knitter to (1) choose the right “base” size for a pattern and (2) use the measurement list to determine what modifications they’ll need to make.
Once the pictures are printed, we draw lines on them in this way:
And then once everyone is “binned”, we re-visit the set of things different sweaters will do to each “bin”‘s shape. The final portion of class is basically a huge dress-up party. Each student who wants to brings some sweaters to share, and I have my collection of hand-knit sweaters (there are a lot of them) to share as well. Everyone tries on different sweaters, and we talk about what the samples do to the wearer’s shape and how she might modify them when knitting for herself.
At the end of the class, each student walks away with a better grasp on the kinds of patterns she’ll like the result from, what size to start with, and what modifications to make to ensure a perfect fit. We have a TON of fun, and the classes are easily one of my favorite ways to spend my knitting time.
With the demands the book is imposing, my teaching schedule is pretty light for the next 6 months. But nevertheless, I do have a few classes scheduled and I hope to see you at a workshop some time soon!
(To sign up for this weekend’s 6 hour workshop, please contact Purlescence at (408) 735-YARN (9276).)