How to Create Flattering Optical Illusions By Wearing Stripes

Giedre has some white tape because she is going to show you how different placement of lines can shape your body’s appearance differently. In every example, Giedre will be using the same black dress and this wonderful white tape and will show you what you need to consider when wearing stripes.

Müller-Lyer optical illusion

Müller-Lyer optical illusion

Let's start with the Müller-Lyer optical illusion. Here you see different length lines, or so it seems…

How to create optical illusions with lines

… but they are actually exactly the same length. The line with inward-pointing arrows looks the longest. 

Now we’re going to look at optical illusions in fashion and what we can create with different placement of the lines.

One vertical stripe in the middle

Wearing vertical stripes

Here you can see two rectangular shapes that are the same size. However, the one on the right divided into half appears to look slimmer and longer. 

Do vertical stripes flatter?

Let’s look at this on a dress. The one on the right is divided with a vertical line in the middle. The vertical line divides the body into two parts, creating a slimming effect.

Different types of vertical stripes

The closer the lines are spaced together, the slimmer and longer the shape looks. So, therefore, the rectangle on the left looks slimmer and longer. 

How to wear vertical stripes

Now let’s check the result with the dresses. The wider the lines, the more heavy and less slimming the effect.

One horizontal stripe in the middle

Wearing horizontal stripes

The second category of lines is horizontal lines. Let’s see what illusion a single horizontal line creates. Again, we have the same size rectangles.

The one on the right is divided by a horizontal line. The horizontal line makes our eye travel along with width rather than the height that we had with vertical lines. It creates an illusion of a shorter and wider object.

Wearing a dress with one stripe in the middle

Here you can see Giedre in the plain dress where she looks taller and slimmer since the line on the right side divides and shortens the silhouette.

Giedre is not saying that horizontal lines are not good because if you know where to place them, they can make a flattering silhouette as well.

A horizontal stripe in different places

Let’s consider the different placement of horizontal lines. The boxes on the far left and far right look the slimmest, while the box that has been cut in half, right in the middle, looks the widest.

Wearing stripes in different places on a dress

Once again, the same dress and same model, just the placement of the line differs.

The rule is that the longer one’s eye travels up or down the body before it is interrupted by a horizontal line, the lengthier your proportions. Therefore Giedre looks the best on the left and the right sides.

If you want your hips to look smaller, avoid jackets that end directly in the widest part of your hips, and also consider tucking in your blouse to your high-waisted pants.

How to create optical illusions by wearing stripes

What about the width of the horizontal stripes? Here once again, the placement of the stripes is very important.

On this dress, you can see that the wider the lines are, the heavier effect it creates. The bottom part of Giedre’s body looks heavier compared to the upper part of her body.

How to create optical illusions by wearing stripes

There are a bunch of other illusions that you can create using different patterns, colors, and silhouettes, but in this tutorial, Giedre just wanted to show you how you can transform your body shape when it comes to stripes.

Clothes can be a very powerful tool to trick your eye, and if you know how to use this tool, you can create more of a flattering body shape for yourself.

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 1 comment

    Perfect explanation and visuals! I always wondered about the top left being better over or under the breasts. Clearly, I have my answer. Over!