by admin on April 7, 2012

the golden mean

this one has been a bit difficult for esme to get.  here’s what our text says about proportion:  “proportions idealized in europe and north america are based on mathematical formulas (ok you lost esme right there!)………well-known buildings and many of their sculptured figures were based on the proportions of 3:5:8 and 5:8:13….these proportions are sometimes referred to as the golden mean…”

to simplify, what this means in fashion is that the top portion of an outfit is shorter than the bottom portion, or vice versa.  this visual length can be created by structure, fabric texture or color.

esme has noticed that her own outfits tend to have long tops (often coming to hip length) and rather equal-sized bottoms.  this is not an ideal proportion!  it would be improved by a bit of a heel, or a shorter top.  but then, the top would not cover esme’s butt!  and as you know, she can’t wear heels.  sometimes a little knowledge is a dangerous thing!

when esme regards herself in the mirror she tends not to notice her own outfit disproportion.  however, as she catches a glimpse of herself in a shop window, she will be thunderstruck by the problem.  another bit of evidence concerning the difficulty of seeing oneself the way others  see one!

golden mean on the right!

ah but now i’ve got it!!!  perhaps esme’s personal golden mean is a non-western one.  indeed, esme is quite sure it’s non-mathematical.  rules, after all, are meant to be broken!  still, esme will suggest (both to herself and her readers) that it’s important to pay attention to proportion.  you may love the shape, color, fabric and style, but if the proportions are off……woe unto the wearer!

iconoclasticly (or not),




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