Fashion draping is the oldest method used since the 18th century. Currently, it is considered to be an important part in fashion designing. Fashion Draping is the process of positioning and pinning fabric on a standard size dress form to develop the structure of a garment design. Many types and sizes of dress forms for women, men and children are made to fulfill the requirement.
A dress can be draped using a design sketch as a basis, or a fashion designer can play with the way fabric falls to create new designs at the start of the dress design process. After draping, the toile fabric is removed from the dress form which was used to create the sewing draped pattern for making fashionable dress to suit an individual. In U.S.A. designers use very light weight fabrics, which is called as 'toile', and U.K. designers call it as 'muslin' cloth.
The techniques for draping fabric require the knowledge of the fabric's characteristics. Designers/drapers must have the knowledge to distinguish among different fabrics which will enable them to select the most appropriate fabric for flow and line of each design. Designers must devote time to collect swatches while shopping and catalogue them by width content. In this way a personal reference library can also be created and developed.
Fabrics used for draping:
Fabrics and clothes must relate to our lifestyles and our active lifestyles are made of many different fabrics such as stretchy knitted fabrics, chiffon, georgette, organza, sheer cottons, voile, and light weight silk fabrics are most suitable for fashion draping purpose. Drape ability plays an important role in making sophisticated draped garments. Mostly, very light weight to medium weight fabric is suitable for draped garments.
Garments made of woven goods are usually draped in muslin or an inexpensive fabric where the grain and cross grain are quite visible .The quality and hand of the muslin should represent the texture and characteristics of the actual fabric used for the garment design. Soft muslin will simulate the draping quality of natural or synthetic silk, and knitted cloth.
Medium-weight muslin will simulate the draping quality of wool and medium-weight cottons. Coarse muslin will simulate the draping quality of heavy weight wool and cottons. Also, canvas muslin will simulate the draping qualities of heavy weight fabrics such as denim or imitation fur.
Consider the large collection of fabrics available before beginning any draping steps. The fabric selected for a garment drape greatly influences the finished look. Analyze and understand the structure and characteristics of the fabric to create the proper ease, hand feel and balance of the garment or pattern drape. Approach each design with a positive attitude and a clear fashion sense.
Garments made of knitted fabrics should be draped in less expensive knit fabric. However, the sample knit should have the same stretch value as in the fabric selected for the finished garment. The right side of the front dress form is used to drape the front basic pattern or garment. This procedure may vary, however, this is the standard rule when fitting and draping any type of garment. In simple words, draping technique means the way a fabric hangs in a dress form as well as on the human body.