What Is Fabric Drape?
The drape of the fabric refers to the way the fabric hangs. Drape is important when selecting a fabric for a project as it affects your garment's fit and style. Fabric can range from soft and fluid to rigid and stiff.
Generally, heavier fabrics are stiff, while lighter fabrics lean towards flowy and fluid. You may come across some exceptions to this rule, so it's always best to look at both the drape and weight to determine what's right for your project.
Is The Drape High, Mid or Low?
This type of drape is soft and fluid with many small folds in the fabric as it hangs. A garment made from this type of fabric will stay close to the body, hugging your curves. High drape holds gathers very well. These fabrics work well for less structured garments where the wearer gives the garment shape (wrap dresses, flowy dresses).
Types of Fabric: Rayon, silk, bamboo knit, tencel
Project Recommendations: Wrap dresses, maxi skirts, flowy dresses, sweater dresses, and blouses. Try the Rae Skirt, Nikko Top & Dress, or Hughes Dress.
A high-mid drape fabric is one that is slightly less fluid and flowy than a high drape fabric. It will still hang close to your body in folds, and will make gathers well, but often is slightly crisp.
Types of Fabrics: Cotton voile, viscose blends, rayon blends
Project Recommendations: Blouses, flowy dresses and skirts. Try the Shirt No. 1, Mave Skirt or the Lichen Duster.
Mid drape is in between flowy and crisp, making it versatile and suitable for many projects. This type of fabric will hang straight down, falling neither towards or away from the body. Mid drape fabric will hold it's shape making it ideal for structured garments.
Types of Fabrics: Cotton jersey knits, cotton lawn, fleece, wool blends, linen, cotton
Project Recommendations: Pajamas, A-line skirts, dresses and coats, t-shirts, dresses/skirts with pleats. Try the Scout Tee, Willow Tank & Dress, or Gallery Tunic.
Mid-Low drape fabrics hang away from the body in small folds. This type of fabric will hold it's shape well making it ideal for structured garments.
Types of Fabric: Linen, twill
This type of drape falls away from the body, hanging out wide with big folds. A great drape to use when you want to hide the contours of the body. For low drape fabrics, gathers will not hold very well.
Types of Fabrics: Canvas, denim, twill
Project Recommendations: Winter coats and jackets, circle skirts, blazers, jeans, pillow covers, bags. Try the Toaster Sweater, Lander Pant and Short, or Cordova Jacket.
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