body image, part 1 of zillions17 May 2008
Interweave Knits (a popular knitting magazine) maintains an online column of sorts called Knitting Daily. On this site, they post little articles, tutorials, discussions, and galleries of the garments featured in the magazine. In one of these recent galleries, they featured the editor of IK, Eunny Jang, modeling several garments from the summer issue. After each photograph of Eunny wearing the garment, she and Sandi Wiseheart (the regular writer of Knitting Daily) made comments about the style and fit of each garment. I really enjoyed this gallery; to me, it’s always interesting to hear discussions about how to customize knitting to suit the wearer better, whether this is done by modifying fit or design details.
The discussion I saw on Ravelry really bothered me. Many people made comments about Eunny’s figure, or various figure types in general, that were pretty rude! They were debating whether she was “busty” or not, as she described herself. One comment even suggested that she needed to eat more! Of course, like everything else on the internet (including this post!), these comments were completely public, and Eunny herself ended up reading them. She must have felt awful, even if (as I think and hope is true) she immediately realized that these people were only projecting their own unhappiness with their bodies onto the most convenient target.
I think it was really brave of her to do the gallery at all. She published her body measurements in a public forum; I like my body pretty well, but I don’t think that I would be comfortable with that sort of disclosure. It saddens me that Eunny’s generous contribution to a free website was met with such venom and cruelty. Ugh.