Photo of Steve Plummer

Marilyn Monroe Illusion

from Woolly Thoughts Illusion Knitting
(6) Name: 'Knitting : Marilyn Monroe Illusion
Marilyn Monroe Illusion
Marilyn Monroe Illusion
Marilyn Monroe Illusion
Marilyn Monroe Illusion
Marilyn Monroe Illusion

Basic Skills Necessary:

  • Knit
  • Purl

Pattern Description:

This illusion was inspired by Andy Warhol's screen prints of Marilyn Monroe. It uses similar unusual colour combinations but cannot precisely recreate Warhol's style as only two colours are used in each of the 'prints'.

The pattern includes a cushion version, which is approximately 40 cm (16") square when worked in DK yarn, and a wall-hanging which measures approximately 80 cm (32") square.

The cushion uses two colours and only one colour is used on each ridge of knitting. The wall-hanging uses four colours and sometimes has one colour on a ridge and sometimes two. One of the photos shows the four colours that were used. These might seem surprising when you look at the four resulting squares when you look at the wall-hanging from directly in front.

If you look very closely you may be able to see that yellow is in continuous stripes going down the right-hand side but it forms the background in the top quadrant and the face at the bottom. A similar thing happens with the green on the left.

This illusion is slightly more difficult to make than some of our others but still only requires fairly basic knitting skills.

All of our illusion patterns come with charts in various sizes, including one specially for tablet use, so you can use whichever you find most convenient.

Photographs cannot convey the full effect of illusion knits. Follow the link to our web site for a video to get a slightly better impression - but it is nowhere near as good as the real thing.

**The original Marilyn Illusion is now in Ripley's Believe It Or Not! in Hollywood**

One of the photos sows the original and its replacement which used slightly different colours.

Sizing / Finished Measurements:

  • Cushion : Approximately 40 cm x 40 cm (16" x 16")
  • Wall-hanging : Approximately 80 cm x 80 cm (32" x 32")


  • DK yarn (Other yarns can be used)
  • Cushion : 125 metres (140 yards) in each of two colours (Extra required for back)
  • Wall-hanging : 250 metres (275 yards) in each of four colours (Extra required for borders)
  • Needles, slightly smaller than recommended for your chosen yarn, long enough for 160 stitches

You Will Also Need:

  • Stitch markers

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