Information on Detail lines

These details are only basic information to give you a better overview. Most of the information can and will vary when put together with other style details, lines, designs, patterns and fabrics.

A style line will allow you to create the illusion of balance and proportion with basic knowledge of some important style lines.

  1. Enhance, alter or conceal the actual contour lines of your body.

  2. Created by the basic outline of the garment such as a sheath, A-line, etc.

Detail lines are produced by lengths, hemlines, trims, fabric textures, smaller prints and accessories. They serve to minimize or maximize the impact of your figure and style lines and to enrich the illusion of a well proportioned body.


Fabric and Texture

  1. Selecting the right textures and fabrics is important in creating a desired illusion.

  2. Each fabric has its own characteristics derived from its fibre and construction, is it stiff, textured, soft, fluid?

  3. Stiff textures tend to hang straight down with little movement, persuading the eyes to move up and down rapidly, creating the impression of a slim shape e.g. textures are taffeta, pique, linen and denim.

  4. Clingy fabrics generally persuade the eyes to move slowly, absorbing all contours. They serve one purpose - to reveal. Unless you have a well-proportioned figure, use clingy fabrics in a softly draping style or avoid them altogether e.g. are silk jersey, lycra and rayon jersey.

  5. Transparent fabrics – they leave little for illusion or imagination, like clingy fabrics. Use them as accents unless well-proportioned body parts are being exposed e.g. gauze, organza or chiffon.

  6. Some fabric textures help develop the illusion of a larger size. Material such as corduroy and tweeds, or other fabrics with thick, rough textures will make you appear larger. If you wish to wear these thick, rough fabrics, wear them at a slender point of your body so they won't emphasize broad areas.

  7. Shiny, light-reflecting materials, such as lurex, cracked ice or sequins have the same effect as bulky material as they attract light, defining you as deceptively larger.

  8. Fabrics which absorb light, lessen the illusion of size e.g. velvet is an excellent.

  9. Thinner fabrics, smoother textures and dull finishes tend to reinforce this image, lessening the illusion of size.

Fabric Pattern

  1. When choosing a fabric, pay careful attention to the fabric pattern.

  2. Small prints and fine textures neither add to nor detract from any part of the figure they cover.

  3. On the other hand, larger prints tend to emphasize and enhance the figure lines they overlay, thus creating an illusion of larger size.

  4. Keep in mind that vertical lines lengthen and slim; horizontal lines broaden your figure.

Hemlines and Lengths

  1. The hemlines and lengths of a garment are detail lines you can use to your advantage in order to balance your shape, proportion and height.

  2. Horizontal lines of hemlines and lengths draw attention; but placed improperly, they can serve to broaden an undesirable feature.

  3. Your individual height, arm and leg length must be strong considerations in selecting the location of your hemlines and lengths.

  4. Long, mid-calf hemline lengths give the illusion of height to most style lines; however, shorter figures may want to avoid this hemline.

  5. The long, mid-calf hemline makes a short figure and someone with a short body/long legs unbalanced, creating an unflattering short-waisted or bottom-heavy, unbalanced appearance.

  6. Above-the-knee hemline lengths are most flattering on tall and/or slender figures.

  7. Above-the-knee hemline lengths are generally reserved for those who have attractive knees and legs and wish to draw attention to their legs. It tends to shorten the figure and create a broader illusion.

  8. Camouflage heavier thighs or bony knees by wearing a below-the-knee or mid-calf length.

  9. Below-the-knee and mid-calf lengths also benefit those women with broad hips by moving the line farther away from them.


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