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Line designers bring sexy back to knitwear

Models show creations by Line during Toronto Fashion Week in Toronto Tuesday, October 19, 2010.

Darren Calabrese/Darren Calabrese/THE CANADIAN PRESS

Think knitwear is stodgy?

Then think twice.

Line's latest collection of contemporary knitted looks for the female form are as fresh as anything you're likely ever going to see purling off a knitting needle.

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And dead sexy, too.

The spring/summer 2011 runway presentation that Line designers Jennifer Wells and John Muscat presented last night in Toronto as part of LG Fashion Week beauty by L'Oreal Paris was awash in slinky -- and at times skimpy -- numbers that definitely went beyond traditional concepts of knitwear as a tea cosy for the body.

Far from concealing, Line's knitted and stitched creations were gloriously revealing of hips, legs, breasts and waists thanks to the drape and weight of yarns so gossamer thin they looked more like a second layer of skin than actual clothing.

This was especially true of one shoulder tops knitted so fine as to be transparent.

Wells and Muscat paired them with peach leather gaucho pants as dramatic as the tops were subtly sensual.

Elsewhere, knitted dresses sporting intricate stitch patterns were more stealthily sexy, playing peek-a-boo with the nakedness of the body instead of showing all at a single glance.

The brisk and beautifully edited collection which debuted in September at New York Fashion Week also featured perforated suede Bermuda shorts and straight leg pants with ruching at the ankles made from Jackson Pollockesque patterned silk.

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There were also origami-like wraparound minis and flowing mixed stitch sweaters with handerchief hems, macramé patterned cocktail dresses with ripped silk ribbons cascading down from the knees and knit jersey tunics with cutaway necklines that looked light as liquid as they glided and rolled with the natural curves and momentum of the body.

Colours ranged from wheat to barely there pink with jolts of copper, orange and loden green appearing periodically down the runway as a reminder of the earthiness behind some of the line's more ethereal looks.

This was, after all, sheep's wool. But such a different kind of animal, you can't imagine.

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About the Author

Deirdre Kelly is a features writer for The Globe and Mail. She is the author of the best-selling Paris Times Eight and Ballerina: Sex, Scandal and Suffering Behind the Symbol of Perfection (Greystone Books). More

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