Garment Construction: Introduction to Draping | Anya Ayoung Chee | Skillshare

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Garment Construction: Introduction to Draping

teacher avatar Anya Ayoung Chee, Fashion Designer, Project Runway Winner, Mentor

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.



    • 2.

      Materials for Draping


    • 3.

      Choosing a Fabric


    • 4.

      Prepping the Muslin


    • 5.

      Draping the Top (1/2)


    • 6.

      Draping the Top (2/2)


    • 7.

      Draping the Bottom


    • 8.

      Draping the Back


    • 9.

      Cutting the Pattern


    • 10.

      Final Steps


    • 11.

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About This Class

This class teaches aspiring designers or homegrown clothes-makers the basic technique of draping - a core garment construction skill that will allow you to start making your own clothes immediately. 

As Project Runway Season 9 winner, I became known for my flowing dresses and easy-fitting looks, all of which I constructed with the draping technique I'll teach you in this class. 

What You'll Learn

This class will take you through the full draping process so you can start designing and constructing your own garments. We'll cover:

  • Preparation. Understanding the tools and materials you need to begin draping a garment. 
  • Fabrics. How to go about choosing the right fabrics for a draped garment. Where to find them and what to look for.
  • Draping. How to pin and mark a muslin pattern on your dress form to create your initial shape.
  • Cutting & Fitting. How to cut a muslin pattern for your garment. 
  • Final Look. Finally, how to take your look from muslin to fabric for cutting and sewing. 

Video Lessons

  • Materials for Draping [03:59]: I'll introduce the tools I use and their purpose in draping.
  • Choosing a Fabric [05:00]: I'll tell you what I look for when choosing fabrics.
  • Prepping the Muslin [07:47]: Before I apply fabric to the dress form, I start with an outline of adhesive tape.
  • Draping the Top (1/2) [06:51]: I'll demonstrate how to shape fabric around the body's natural form.
  • Draping the Top (2/2) [05:16]: I'll demonstrate how to shape fabric around the body's natural form.
  • Draping the Bottom [06:28]: I'll show you how to create a dress bottom.
  • Draping the Back [09:09]: This is about forming the back of a dress.
  • Cutting the Pattern [08:42]: Finally, pattern meets print. The results are fun.
  • Final Steps [04:34]: I'll show you how to put it all together.

What You'll Do

Follow along with this class by making your own draped dress! Share your progress with fellow classmates from all over the world for feedback. 

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Anya Ayoung Chee

Fashion Designer, Project Runway Winner, Mentor


Anya Ayoung Chee is the winner of Project Runway Season 9 and one of the hottest young fashion designers to emerge from the Caribbean in recent years.

Hailing from Trinidad and Tobago, she launched her women's label, PILAR, in May 2009 and it has been making waves ever since. In June 2010, she launched a lingerie line named Anya de Rogue, the first of its kind in the Caribbean.

A graduate of Parsons School of Design and Central St Martins School of Art and Design, Anya worked as a designer in New York City until 2007, when she returned home after her eighteen-year old brother Pilar died tragically in a car accident. Soon after the move, Anya was selected to represent her country at the Miss Universe pageant. This experience propelled her into a life in front on the ca... See full profile

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1. Trailer: My name is Anya Ayoung Chee and I'm a fashion designer. I'm season nine winner of Project Runway. I have a clothing line that's called Anya and essentially it's someone's contemporary. It's kind of in a niche zone of clothes for destination travel and today we're going to talk about draping. Draping is a process of creating a pattern for a garment on a dress form, and then creating the garments based on that pattern. I just think it's a straight direct process especially for somebody who's doing this for the first time, it's a very tangible process to see something come to fruition. What we want, of course, is to show it off, to impress me because whoever wins this contest gets to be the new summer intern for me in 2014, which is going to be fantastic and a lot of fun. But, you need to show me that you got and you grasped all the concepts that we talked about in this class. 2. Materials for Draping: Welcome to our draping class. We are going to go through all the materials that you're going to need to successfully drape a garment. You always need a measuring tape. It is not necessary at all times, but it's just helpful to help figure out when you're transferring to your garments what measurements you want to use. This is called draping tape. One is adhesive and one isn't. I prefer the adhesive. I just think it's easier and quicker to get your shape onto the dress form, which we have right here. Essentially, what you do with it is mark out the shape or the design that you're intending to drape, and it creates a guideline while you put the fabric on to the dress from. The non-adhesive one, sometimes the benefit of it is that it can bend into other shapes that the adhesive one can't. So, if you're doing something a bit more complicated, this is a good option. The way that it works is, instead of having the adhesive, you just pin the tape into the dress form. Of course, you need pins and you can generally use a whole range of pins. I like the ones that have the sort of little plastic ball on top because it's easier on your fingers. You choose the pins based on the fabric that you're draping. In this case, we're using this lightweight muslin which is like a practice fabric. So, there are a whole range of weights of the muslin which you'd choose based on what the garment is going to be and what the fabric is going to be for the garment. So, because we're doing something that's flowing and light, and we'll get to the fabric after this, we're using a lightweight version. But essentially, it's what you use so that you can mark on it, cut it, throw it away. It doesn't matter what happens to it. It just helps you to get through the process and the trial and error of the process. This is your trustee pin cushion. Of course, you need scissors, preferably something that you'd never use with people, that you just use it only for fabric so that it remains as sharp as possible. This is chalk which comes in various different colors. I tend to use red or black or something that you can see when you mark the fabric so that you can see where your markings are. This is what you do once you have the shape on the form, you use the chalk to decide where you're actually going to put the stitching of the garment. I have a range of rulers over here. You can basically have any ruler. These are particularly for when you're drawing curves on a garment. But for the purpose of draping, the rulers aren't as important, but it doesn't hurt to have them when we're going to the actual flat pattern. The most essential tool that you need for draping is the dress form. You can get a dress form at sometimes fabric stores, more often sewing supply stores. They can range on the higher end to about $300, but you can go online and get a much less expensive version. Once you can put pins into it, that's really what matters. There are dress forms that have legs, there are dress forms that have arms, it really depends on what you're draping. In the case of this dress, you really just need a full length form without any arms. You also can choose the size dress form that you want depending on who your client is or who you are and what size you want to make your garments in. These are all the materials you're going to need to drape a garment. Now, we're going to move on to the next lesson which is choosing the fabric for your garments accurately. 3. Choosing a Fabric: So, this lesson is about how to select your fabric for your garments. It might seem like a pretty simple and maybe not important thing but essentially, the fabric makes the garments. I love prints but it's not only about the actual aesthetic of it. It's really about the fall of the garments and particularly because we're doing something that's flowing, the fall is everything. When I talk about fall, I mean essentially this, the way that it flows, the way that it moves, the way that when it's an actual garment, it determines essentially everything about how the garment looks. So this is called silk charmeuse. It's probably my go-to fabric. It's what I always, it's a section in the fabric so I always start at. Sometimes I actually design from that point onwards. If I find something that I like, I like how it falls, I like the pattern of it then I go forth from there with what I'm actually going to make. So, that is how important choosing a fabric can be. Silk charmeuse has a particular flow, as you can tell it's very light. This is called either Georgettes or faux chiffon, it's just slightly lighter version of the charmeus, and it tends to be a little bit more transparent. So, sometimes with a silk chiffon or Georgette, you actually have to do a lining so that you make sure that it's not completely transparent unless that's the look you're going for. I'm just showing you this cotton, 100 percent cotton, as an example of something that doesn't really flow because it's pretty stiff and it works better for a garment that is more structured, maybe a pair of pants, a jacket, a blazer where the flow isn't as important but the actual structure of the garment is more important. For this particular design and address it looks and flows in the way that we're designing this one that you ideally use a silk charmeus or any version of silk that you feel has this weights and this flow but this kind of fabric can be very expensive particularly if you're buying relatively small amounts. The dress that we made will probably require around five to six yards which is a lot of silk and can become very expensive overall. So, when you're still practicing, you can use another lightweight fabric, perhaps a very light cotton. This is a cotton wall that is much less expensive and therefore while you're figuring it out, you're not going to run it yourself a huge bill or you can even maybe use a lightweight jersey, a polyester even, something that in fact right now they have very many options of synthetic silks that costs a lot less and have the same feeling, so that's a very good option. The other thing when you're buying a fabric is that the fabric center come in two or three standard widths. You're probably accustomed to seeing if you've been to fabric so before that fabric is sold on a ream or a bolt and the width of the fabric can be 45 inches, 58 inches, 60 inches something in that range and that does affect how you're going to construct your garments. Of 45 inch piece of fabric, sometimes for something like what we are going to make can be troublesome because it's narrower and it might make you have to create a seam where you don't want to create a seam. So, for a dress like this, I almost always ask for a piece of fabric that is either 58 inches or 60 inches wide. Now, it's probably impossible to avoid, especially if you live in a small city or in a small town, getting a fabric that somebody else has, in fact it's something that designers, especially young designers and emerging designers deal with a lot because we buy fabric in stores that everybody buys fabric. So, I tend to pay attention to that because sometimes you're making something and then you see it on a runway and you don't want that to happen. I do all sort of things if I come across that, I've oftentimes turn fabric inside out and use it as lining and just be creative about the process because you're always going to find that obstacle and you don't wanna look like anybody else. I buy fabric when I respond to it very instinctively and it just speaks to me and I once I have to make something out of it and I have to have it. So, if you feeling that, then that's what you buy. Don't worry about what anybody else says, don't worry if nobody else likes it, it's your choice, it's your garments, it's what you want to make and it has to resonate with you personally. 4. Prepping the Muslin: So, here we are at the draping part of the lesson, which is the lesson, and this is a dress form. You have to have this for draping because without it, you can't actually create the pattern on the form itself, and it has to be able to take pins because sometimes if you're shopping for one, the forms on mannequins that you can't stick pins into, and then you can't drape on that because it won't be able to shape the fabric effectively that way, and you can't use a friend because it will hurt. So, what we're gonna do is create more or less the design that we want using the draping tape, and this is the adhesive one. Along the way, keep in mind that what I'm doing here, you can translate into whatever design you would like to do. So, I'm going to create a V-neck line, and I'm trying to decide every single aspect of the design that I want while I'm putting this tape on to the form. Of course, what's good about the tape is that you can pick it up and move it if you don't like it. So, it's going to be a V-neck. It's like drawing in 3D which is pretty cool. Then this will be where the arm hole is, and this process of getting the shape onto the form with the tape, it takes a little time, a little practice and eventually will become very natural for you. But there's absolutely no right or wrong to how this works because you don't have to worry about where it starts and finishes, the tip is just a guideline. Draw outside of the lines, it's better that way. What helps about these forms is that they have these seams that help you to decide where on the body this will actually fall. So, this is called a center front, and we're going to do a garment that is perfectly symmetrical, so I'm only going to shape one side of the dress because all you're going to have to do is mirror it. If you're doing something asymmetrical, then you would have to drape the entire form, and this part of the form is the natural waist on the body. So, it's not the hip, and it's not the empire line. It's where you would put your hands on your hips at the smallest part the waist, and that also helps you to guide where you might lay the seam at the center of the dress or where your pants might fit. All of those things, this is sort of your marker on the form. So, I tend to do a lot of deep-plunging V-neck lines. I was always criticized about it on Project Runway, but it's just what I like, and I guess it's a very sort of fine line between what gets to be too vulgar and what is an acceptably deep V. So, sometimes I have to move this around a lot to figure out where is acceptable and where is just too much information. So that's why I have it right below if this is where someone, well, you can't wear a bra with this, and that's always something I always got criticized for too. But it's just enough. It's not too much. This is obviously a stomach. So, when this has two sides, it would be just enough exposure in the front, and then I tend also to do a pretty deep hole. This is not average. Usually, you do something a little bit more like this. See, it's not that easy. Actually, this right here, what I'm doing with this arm hole is when the non-adhesive tape becomes easier because you can get these curves, but this would be more normal, and then this is where I am right now. So this kind of shows there are no rules, just whatever feels natural to you, and whatever you want to make. Experiment with it. That's how I figured this out. Where is it too low? Where is it just enough for what I want? I've even done some that are even more all the way down to the waist which is a lot of skin, but it's very sexy, and that's what a lot of my clothes are like that, especially because where I live is hot, so I can get away with it. Okay. So, then we're going to grab the fabric, and what we're going to do is cut a piece off. So, you probably see people do this in fabric stores all the time. You can just snip a piece and then tear it, and it will tear in a straight line if you don't drop it. I'm only taking a piece because I'm only doing the top part of this dress, and it's easier for me to work with something slightly smaller. If you've already chosen the fabric for your garments and it is a certain width, then you want to get a piece of muslin that is the same or very similar width because if you use a narrow piece of muslin, and you have a larger piece of fabric, then it's going to confuse your pattern, and you're not going to be able to do it exactly the way that you drape it on the form. So, this piece of muslin is actually 50 inches, and therefore you want to make sure that the fabric that you're doing the garment in is also around the same if not the same width. Fabric is sewn in two direction, the threads go in two directions, and what happens is that if you hold it up like this, you can see that it just goes straight up and down, but if you turn it diagonally, which is called the bias, you, all of a sudden, get the opportunity to see it fold and move, and therefore give you that flowing feeling that we want for this garments. Obviously, you can do it any way you want, and the best way to go about it is try all the different versions, but I can tell you for sure that if you want that flowing skirts and that flowing feel on the body, then you want to turn it diagonally, this way, and give it the opportunity to move in that light and an easy way. When you lay it over on the dress form like this, you see the lines through the fabric. That's the other great thing about muslin is that it allows you to essentially use the draping tape as a stencil. This up here represents the shoulder seam. So when you're stitching the garment, you're going to need something called allowance. Allowance is, if you look inside of any garment that you own, it is that little extra piece of fabric that creates the seam on the inside. So, I'm giving myself a little bit of extra on top of the shoulder seam and then making sure that I have excess fabric on all sides. Then I can grab my pins, get it into the form, and make sure that it's securely into the form. Here, we begin the process of shaping the actual garment. 5. Draping the Top (1/2): When you realize that the garment needs to lie flat onto the body if that's the look that she wants and that's more or less where we're going with the top of this of the dress. The dot basically accounts for all that excess fabric that is inevitably going to be there because you're trying to shape to a human form and it's not flat so, therefore, there's a lot of excess. So, usually in conventional garments, the dot is on the inside and so you don't see it. But I've sort of taken this because I was learning by myself, I made design elements out of it. So, instead of it being hidden and clean on the inside, I might sometimes make it very obvious on the outside and that becomes part of the design. I'm going to pin along where we have the stencil made first and then we can see how much excess fabric we have and therefore, where we might need to place a dot. So, you kind of have to use your fingers and sort of work the fabric into position so that it becomes flat and exactly where you'd want it to be. At this point, we're beginning to see the shape onto the foam but here is all this excess fabric and we want to be able to show off the shape of the person. So, I've just gathered it into kind of a triangle shape and then I'm going to fold it over where it seems like it's lying flat and I'm going to pin it right there. Now, you can see how it allows for a flat shape all the way down to the waist. Again, you're just this constant shaping the fabric into the form that you wanted. This part is where you need the chalk and what we're going to do is draw along the lines that we see the stencil through the bust line but even if that's no longer the shape you want, you can now start to change your mind and create something else but we're going to stick to the original plan so we don't get too confused. What this line represents is where you're going to actually stitch the garments. So, I'm drawing along here to create the neckline, this is center, and this is the waist. Up here is the shoulder seam and this is the arm hole and right down here, which I'm using the actual seam of the dress form defined is the side seam. So, what you can see right now is the outline of the top of your dress and I'll also mark along the dot because this is how you're going to be able to sew the dot into the top and whether you decide to leave it on the outside or put it on the inside, this is the actual pattern. Now, obviously, take your time and try to get it as neat as possible. I'm notoriously not neat and I never take my time, but it does make the process harder when you go to actually sew the garment. So, the good thing about the chalk is that you can kind of keep going over it and make adjustments. We're going to know, when we actually take this off of the form, is that we're going to add an additional inch on the outside of the whole pattern which you don't have to draw on at this point but just so that you remember. You're not going to cut the pattern on the line where you're stitching. You're going to cut it on the outside of that which is again called allowance. So, in the event that you're doing a garment that has a lot of excess fabric or for whatever design reason you might want to put more than one dot, that's totally fine. So, I'm just going to show you how that scenario might come up. If you're doing a different kind of arm hole and it's slightly higher, so you can do a dot both here below the bust and alongside the bust. You do it the same way as we did the first one. Pin it into place. Pin the side seam into place, and then pin the other dot into place. This is going to take time so don't get frustrated. It took me forever to get to this point where it sort of seems to look so easy but just keep working with it and keep smoothing it out and keep finding that perfect point where everything is lying flat. In the case of having two dots, you then take the chalk again and find where you're going to stitch that dot in and you want to get to an actual point. Forgive my terrible drawing skills. But yes, an actual point is what you're aiming for. As much as you want it to be flat, try not to pull the fabric because that warps the actual fabric and it is not an accurate representation of what it's going to be like when you actually cut the garment. Because most fabrics have, if not all, a little bit of give and when you pull it, you're changing the shape of the fabric itself. So, you want to sort of gently move with your fingers the fabric into the shape that you want without affecting the fabric itself. 6. Draping the Top (2/2): What we're going to do is cut this piece out and when it's cut out, what you have is a pattern. What you learn as you go along with creating a garment is like a puzzle piece. They're all different elements to this one eventual garments that fit together perfectly. In the case of the dress that we're making right now, there is a top portion and a script portion and they're joined at the seam at the waist,. Why I'm doing it this way particularly, is because it will help you to translate this particular lesson into other designs. Because if you make one long garment out of one long piece of fabric, you may not necessarily understand that every garment is made up of several different units that you can then work with and create a whole range of designs out of. So, this pattern for instance, could potentially if you did an arm hole that was higher up, turn into a dress with sleeves or you could change the design so that it actually comes a bit more this way, and all of a sudden, you're creating a hole to the dress. So, this actual shape that we've created here is just a guideline and you can start with this, but then gradually create more and more shapes out of the same lesson. First, I'm going to cut the excess fabric because that helps me a lot. Now, you don't want to do this too much because sometimes it can be a bit of a waste, but that's why I use Muslin. Because it's not that expensive and you don't have to worry about how much you might have to throw away. So, I'm cutting from the top down but you can cut from the bottom up it doesn't matter. I'm just going to cut very loosely and easily, because this has no bearing on the actual pattern at the end. So, I'm going to cut off the excess here. So now, we have a slightly easier piece of fabric to work with. What we're going to do now is cut even closer to that seam allowance line which is one inch away from the actual outline of your pattern. One time I was on Project Runway and I cut where I wasn't supposed to cut and it somehow then had to turn into the part of the design. I remember always the back of the top being somehow the design elements that the judges loved that was an accident. So, all sorts of things can happen that work in your favor. It's very important in this process to not be afraid and just take risks and see what happens. Then I'm going to cut the arm hole now. This is something that you do have to pay a little bit of attention to. So, this is the seam allowance that side of the side seam. Imagine this part of the dress form is exactly where the arm is going to come out of the body. And so, you have to imagine this line extends into imaginary infinity in the direction of this angle. So, you want to align your scissors away from that line but in the same general direction. So, don't cut from down here. Because then you're going to start to cut into the arm hole and then you no longer have the shape that you want. So, this is the general direction that I imagined this line goes in. I go up a little bit and then I cut in a round shape mimicking this red marking that we made here. Then on top where we have the shoulder seam, similarly, I imagine that this shoulder seam line extends along into thin air and I go away from it slightly and try to mirror the angle of that line. What we want to end up with is something that looks pretty flat. So, I'm going to cut away this excess here, similarly following the line of the pattern. So, to maintain where the dot is, this is where you want to make sure that you pin into the fabric, lift the pin out of the form, and then hold the dots between your fingers and pin it into place. So that you remember exactly where that dot goes. So, we're taking this off of the form so that we can create the pattern on the table and then take it to the fabric. But before we do that with the top, we're going to also drape the skirt. 7. Draping the Bottom: Okay. So, we're going to drape a skirt on a flair. Don't ask me exactly what that means, except for the fact that we again, go with the fabric in the bias direction, for the same reason, letting it fall the way that we want it. In this case, not necessarily need the draping tape or a stencil the way we did with the top because we already have the seam of the dress form that creates the center-front, and the seam on the side that creates the side seam. In the case of this skirt, that's really all the direction that we need, as well as the waist. If your dress form doesn't have that, then take your draping tape, and create those lines yourself. Starting from the natural waist, taking just enough that again will create your seam allowance. You have to hug your mannequin lots of times just to get it in place, and pin on one side. This process takes a little bit of time because what you want to do is get the fabric to fold along the waistline in a way that gives you that fall in the script. It's really something that you just do with your eye. This is where your eye becomes very important because it's not science, and it's really just, the beauty of draping is that you get to just make it look exactly the way you want it to look in the end. So, I want it to look like a flowing skirt, I'm going to use my fingers right here to create each one of these folds. We're pinning along the waistline until we get to the side seam. Something that's important with this kind of a skirt, is to make sure that you leave enough fabric on this side, coming around to the back of the dress because you're going to have to cut down to create the side seam of the skirt. You don't want to get to this part of it, and you've run out of fabric. So, now that we have a shape, we're going to mark it off. I'm going to draw where I know the center is. Then I'm going to draw in between the pins where I know the waistline is, then similarly, where the side is. So, very much like the top, you're creating the pattern onto the muslin. With the flair skirt you want to make sure that the fabric layer is completely flat at the waist because we're not doing gathers, and we're not doing pleats, which are two other ways that you can make this skirt. Similar to the top, you are going to cut, leaving about an inch of seam allowance on all sides. So, side, waist and front. In the same way that we cut the top, we cut the skirt. First, we're going to do a rough cut, so that we get rid of the excess. If it helps to just pin this back up, so you can see. Then, once you've done that rough cut, then we go a little bit closer, mimicking the angle of the pattern itself. Let it form the shape that you want before you start to cut. Then, because the line that you're actually cutting in the fabric is a triangle, of sorts, and not a rectangle, and so, when you're cutting down you want to make sure that it remains in a straight line all the way down. Many a time I've cut into the skirt itself which can spoil your whole day. Okay. Then you're going to cut the hemline into a sort of circle. I'm cutting it extra long because then, I can have room to fix it if need be. So that you can understand how these puzzle pieces fit together, I am putting the pattern for the top back onto the form. You'll see that when it's sewn, you're lining up, side seam, matching the side seam of the skirt, the dull backward went, using your draping tape as your guide, and you find again your center front-line matching the center front-line of your skirt. You can begin to see how when it's pieced together, this dress becomes one entire shape. All of this excess fabric is going to be on the inside of your garment. So, this is a good point to look at all of your lines, and make sure that you, I'm the one that's off. So, what's good about the chalk is that you can go back now, and make sure that all of your lines actually match up. This might be a good reason to have maybe two or three different color chalks because then, you can know what's your first round, then your second, and then your final round. 8. Draping the Back : So, we're going to go through the motions for the back of the dress, which follow the same steps as what we did in the front. But of course the back doesn't have any curves or need necessarily four dots like the front. So, in the same way as the front we are going to draw a back outline and it helps if it matches exactly with the dripping tip line that you created for the front. Just work work it until it's the way you want it to be. The side seam is where the front piece and the back piece meet and the same natural waist seam that we created in the front, where the top meets the skirt is the same seam that continues all the way around to the back. In the same process as we did for the front panel, we're going to lay the fabric down onto the form. So, I'm going to pin along the fabric, again creating the shape, finding the dripping tip and because again, there no curves, this panel can be one flat panel with no dots, no folds. There's no need for hiding or getting rid of excess fabric. But if you want for whatever reason to put a dot, you can you. Just, instead of flattening the fabric, you create the dots, just like we did on the front and mark it in the same way. But I prefer it to be flat. Then we mark out the shoulder seam, the arm hole in a straight line. The side seam and the waist, and this is your back panel. Again, with your seam allowance of about an inch all the way around, and cut the excess out. This is how we see now that the front panel can meet the back. Line them up and you'll see how the side seam outline for the back should meet the side seam outline for the front. If we pinned it together, this is exactly where it's going to be stitched. We can also cut this so that they match perfectly. Folding the front and back together, we're just cutting down where the side seam seam allowance will be. So, what it starts to look like is, if you turned the garment inside out, this is what it would be on the inside. You can do the same for the shoulders. Okay, the back of the skirt, we're going to do actually in one continuous panel versus two halves, the way that we did the front. This is completely up to you, depending on the width of your fabric and depending on whether you want more of a flare or slightly narrow of a flare. More of a flare, you might want to do two separate panels. In this case, I wanted to just curve around the back. So, I'm just going to do one. When you don't have a seam, it can let the dress flow even more easily and organically than if you put a seam there. So, either way, it's really up to you. So, again the fabric is on the bias, and we're going to leave the seam allowance along the top. This is the natural waist, and create the shape the way you did the front. Similarly to the front, we're going to find where the skirt lies flat on the waist, but still creates the falls and the skirt that you want. Then pin along, mark off where the natural waist is, the waist which is the seam in this case. This will also join with the front, and mark on either side where this side seam is going down in a straight line, making sure that you still have the flow of the skirt that you want. You might have to keep pulling it out to make sure you don't lose the shape. Then mark the side scene, and do what we did with the top, matching it to the front. The front is exactly where the side seam of the back is. Ct it out, leaving the seam lines, and following the line of the pattern. So, when I'm doing the front left panel because it is an exact mirror image of the front right panel. So, imagining that you have both pieces and if everything is accurate, then you wouldn't have to create a muslin piece for that side. Then we cut the skirt out, mirroring the pattern for the front right panel. So, it helps at this point to march up the front to the back, so that you know that you're getting the flare in the skirt that you want, and this helps you to cut it out, following the line of the front. If you want, you can pin the front or the back all the way down, making sure that it's lying flat. Okay. Then, we can cut again in a half circle all the way around the hemline where you want it to fall. To do that, you can lay your fabric out so that you can see. If it helps you to draw the line so that you can cut along something, that is also fine but I'm just going to eye it. But you can see here why the width of the fabric is so important. Because, if it was a narrow piece of fabric you wouldn't be able to get this one continuous panel in the back. So here again, we cut the seam, the side seam paying attention to where exactly follows a straight line down to the ground. The way that it looks now because it's still muslin, even though it's a lightweight muslin, is still not even going to reflect really how much is going to flow and how light it's going to be. But you got a pretty good sense of what the dress is going to look like when this side is mirrored and it meets the back. What you can do too, you can either stitch the front two panels and the skirt panels together all the way down, or this is where you can decide, do you instead leave the dress open at a certain point so that you create a dramatic slit in the front. Do you maybe do a line of buttons as the opening, or do you do a zip? This is where you can also start to play around a lot with your design decisions. You can decide if you put the entrance of the dress anywhere where there's a seam, essentially. 9. Cutting the Pattern: So, now that you have your panels assembled, marked and cut on a dress form, we're going to take them off of the dress form and lay them into a 2D version. Before you do it, again take a quick look and make sure you have every single line that you're going to need for sewing marked off, which would be every single seem, every single dot and where all of the different panels meet each other. Don't take for granted that you're going to remember because, I promise you, you're not going to remember. Now that we've done that, I'm going to remove the pattern from the form. Don't remove the dots as yet. Because this is the right top, I'm just going to call it RT, and then I'm also going to mark the center, C, and the side, S. I know it seems elementary but believe me, you're going to want to remember that. The next step is to make a notch on the lines, and notch being a very very small little cut like that, and you're going to make one on each end of the dot as well as where the dot folds. So the dot folds right here, you're going to make a little notch there and on the other side of it, as well as rights where the fold happens in the center. Now, the reason for doing this is because when you're sewing, you're going to want to remember how exactly that dot forms. So, when I remove this pin, I have these markers that help me to remember exactly where this fold happens, and I do the same on either side of the dot fold where the dots actually land and the center of the dot so that I can safely remove the pin, and now the pattern is completely flat. I'm going to go and press this with the iron because you really want the 2-D pattern to be exactly flat, so that you don't make any mistakes when you're cutting the silk fabric. I'll be back. So, I've pressed my pattern so that it's flat and it's important also to press the fabric, because you want to make sure that when you go to sew, it's exactly lined up the way you wanted. So, because we draped the pattern on the bias, we're going to make sure that when we cut, the fabric is also on the bias. That affects how the garment folds and how it lays on the body because you want to make sure that it looks exactly the way it did on dress form. The way you're going to figure this out is by trial and error again. If you do it wrong and it's falling in a strange way, you're going to notice, is going to be very evidence to you. So, don't be afraid to just experiment again and figure it out as you go along. Because we did the front panels of the dress in a mirror image symmetrical to the other side, we're going to fold the fabric in half and lay the pattern down like this. Make sure that you have fabric on both sides. Because we're cutting silk, silk moves a lot and it can get very frustrating why we're cutting it because if it's not perfectly flat, then you're going to end up with more fabric in the pattern than you actually want. So, it helps to use something to weigh down the fabric, it doesn't matter what it is. If you go to clothing, fabric stores and fabric supplies stores, they have all sorts of weights that you can buy that are specifically for when you're cutting, but if you don't want to go to all that expense, you can just really use anything that works. So, another thing that I do to make sure that the pattern lays exactly on the fabric, is I take the pins and I will lift the fabric with the pin, making sure to not move the fabric underneath too much, and that will secure the pattern to the fabric. All of this is an effort to make sure that what you're cutting out is exactly the same as what your drape's on the dress form, and you just pin it around the pattern key points. Then we're going to cut along the fabric. Take your time and make sure that you're cutting exactly the way the patent is made. Feel free to be much neater than I am. You remember that this red line, the final red line is way a stitch is going to be and then away from it, is where we're cutting because that's actually the seam allowance for the garment. See how it's moved already. Then that needs to be fixed. Okay, let me cutting, this is a center front, and the last thing I'm going to do is mimic the notches that we made for the dots. So, let you know exactly where to fold it. The how you know where to sew without marking the fabric itself is that, especially if this was slightly neater, you will know exactly that one inch in from the edge of this fabric that shift cuts is where you're going to sew, and on your sewing machine, there are markings that show you an inch away from the needle, and then you line it up exactly when you're sewing. So, now we can leave this piece altogether so that you remember that this is the front rights and front lefts panels. You want to keep that aside until you finish cutting the skirts panels. The next step is to cut the skirt panels out, front in the same way as we did the top, the front right panel will mirror exactly the front left panel, whereas the back is as we drips it one continuous piece. You follow exactly the same method that we did for the top, except it's easier because there aren't any dots and the same for the two bath panels. If you don't have a huge cutting table in your home studio or wherever you're working, just lay the fabric and the panel out on your living room flow, wherever you have space, remembering to weigh down the fabric and keep the silk in place the whole time while you're cutting. Once you have all the pieces together, then we take it to the sewing machine and begin constructing the garment. 10. Final Steps: So, now that we have cut the fabric, the actual fabric from the pattern for both the top two panels, the bottom two panels and the back of the skirt, as well as the back panels. We would construct it by putting each of those pieces together. Now, since this is not a sewing class and especially since sewing is not my forte, we are focusing on how these pieces now would come together to form an actual dress. This right here, with the panel over the finished garment, shows you how it would start to come together, when you actually sew it and in the same way, when the skirt is attached it forms exactly the shape of the final piece. In this case I did the back two panels in a share saxophone, instead of in the patent silk shamoz, which is how you can start to begin, to play with the same pattern and create a whole new design. Similarly, if as I mentioned you cut the arm hole slightly differently, not quite as wide as long as this, then you can set a sleeve into the garments, or you can change the way that the front is either closed, open, high slits, no slits at all where these folds fall or exactly the way that we drape the muslin. Similarly, the way that we made sure to keep smoothing the fabric out so that it lies flat on the form, look at how it translates into the dress itself, which will then I'll visit translate into when someone's wearing it. The fit of the top panels, the fits of the top of the skirts and how smooth and straight all the seams are along the lines that we actually drew onto the pattern when we were doing the muslin. That particular kind of drape is what allows for, as well as the choice of fabric, is what allows for this flow in the skirt. You can then take those same techniques and decide whether you change your style lines and therefore change the actual design of the garment, but all of the same concepts and methods and steps apply, no matter what actual design you're going to make. So, that's it for an introduction to draping. I just want you to remember that this is a process that takes time. When I first draped a flare skirt, I only did half a skirt and I got so frustrated that I never had the other half of the skirt. So, it just takes a little while and just be patient with yourself and let it flow and eventually you're going to get it just perfectly right. So, because this class is a very process-based class, the student project is essentially going to be a bit pieced together. So I need to see the steps along the way, so that I can see what you're doing, as best as I can. So, what you can send me is a sketch if you have one, if you've started that way, you can send me a picture of your dress form with the style lines showing me what you're intending to create and you can then show me the actual cut outs muslin pattern. Ideally, some form of rendering of the final products, whether it's a photoshop drawing or it is a color pencil drawing, anything that I can really grasp way your vision is, and of course the best best best best is if you can have the dress made or make it yourself. But that's not a requirement and what we want of course, is to show it off to impress me because whoever wins this contest gets to be the new summer intern for me in 2014, which is going to be fantastic and a lot of fun, but you need to show me that you got on your grasp all the concepts that we talked about in this class. So, I hope that you've enjoyed the class and that you've taken away some usable actually valuable lessons and knowledge so that you can start draping your own designs and make sure to share your work with the rest of your class so that we can all get feedback and share my knowledge as we go along this process. 11. More Creative Classes on Skillshare: