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What I learned in draping class at FIT

Posted by Regine Tessone- founder of the Original Modest Swimwear line for ladies and girls on


Draping class at FIT taught me how important precision is. Draping gives three dimensional form to an idea of a garment. In Draping one uses a fabric called Muslin (a very low priced somewhat stiff fabric). It would be too costly to use any other material for practice. However; once you have the correct version draped then you must use the actual fabric with which you intend on creating that particular garment. Ideally, if you are designing a garment like jeans then you must use denim fabric. If you are off by even a 1/8 of an inch, then the entire garment is out of sync in measurement and will result in a poor garment design. To tear a fabric or muslin one must do so within the grain lines of the fabric. It is preferred to cut the material this way then to use scissors. One must be careful not to create stress on the fabric as it will give the potential garment a “poor look”. Proper amounts of seam allowances must always be taken into account. This will allow for better flexibility in wearing the garment. Darts are a great way of adding extra movement into a garment design. Another way of adding extra movement in a garment is by cutting the fabric on a bias ( briefly put, a bias is created by folding the fabric that is square shaped in half and working along the long part of triangle thereby created).

The great thing about working with swimwear is you do not have to worry about darts and perfect seam allowances. The best swimwear fabrics, stretch in four directions. It is the perfect fabric to use for excessive body movement. It is not cheap using this fabric but the results are fabulous all the time. At Aqua Modesta only four way stretch swimwear fabrics are used. As the designer of this line, I am asked by some of our accounts, if we can use lower priced fabrics for swimwear. However the lower priced fabrics stretch in two directions only. That would compromise the concept of swimwear. A garment that is well designed must take into account its functionality as well as its fashionable appearance. B”H, Aqua Modesta stands behind a garment that does both really well.