drape. drape. drape-drape-drape-drape….

in saying “drape drape” over and over loads of times to myself i have become completely fixated on the sesame street aliens.

WHATEVER. like you didn’t already know i was weird.

but this may be more apt than i give myself credit for, because in the year i have had these books only recently have they become…not foreign. for some reason, it just took me that long to appreciate what i was looking at and learn to think about how i might use the patterns for my own looks and goals. this has become so true that i could not wait the extra few weeks to get drape drape 3 in english and actually bought it, in japanese, at Kinokuniya in Bryant Park in order to get my hands on it early.

obsession #1

now, of course, i am completely obsessed. i am swimming in knits and am scheming on how all of them will be drape drape (or pattern magic stretch fabrics) garments.



yes, i already have fabric for this one.

actually, here is what i think is the most interesting about the drape drape patterns. firstly, they are actually really well-drafted. as the fashion incubator says,

I have to say, these are nice patterns quality wise or at least this one was. To be sure #4 is one of the simpler styles but all the seam lines and notches matched. Jumping ahead (I didn’t take a picture of this), the patterns were also well balanced, impressively so. Even with such a wide variety of possible body shapes, the side seam was exact as were the shoulder seams. As I said, impressive.


what i, in my non-drafting-expert personhood, noticed, is that the patterns are huge, clear, and easy to trace. on the pages of the book, they are odd and confusing and there is no clear way to make pattern alterations.

my big epiphany this weekend, though, is that the patterns are very sophisticated conceptually, but make an uncommon amount of sense once you actually see them in fabric and begin manipulating the pieces to create garments. that said, i actually needed my dress form to help me figure out how the pieces were meant to fit together. even in the english translations the patterns might as well be in japanese – i’m thinking they are a step above a burda pattern, instruction-wise, but not much father than that.  but, the instant i had the fabric partially draped over my form, i immediately understood how the bits and bobs were meant to go together and create something unusual and beautiful.


i love the styles, though.  the tunics have gorgeous batwing sleeves and seaming details; the knit tops and dresses look like silky bits of knit awesomesauce.  i look forward to experimenting with loads of colors and patterns to create some truly unusual pieces.

drape drape around the web:

LLADYBIRD, by a total coincidence, has pretty much the same reaction to the book that i do!  🙂

fun fact:  i was in Kinokuniya with some friends, including another designer/sewer/craftsperson.  leafing through the book, after he had gently coaxed it from my hands while i was squealing with delight, he remarked that nearly any set of patterns chosen from the book would make a fairly eye-catching collection.

obviously he is not as obsessed with project runway as i am, because andy south has already been there and done that.  with pattern magic AND drape drape.

This entry was posted in Reviews. Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to drape. drape. drape-drape-drape-drape….

  1. Clio says:

    Wow, there is some serious Drape Drape love in the interwebs today. Sunni is also doing a giveaway.

    I’m loving that lace insert top! Or should I say yip yip yip yip yip? (I miss the days when Sesame Street had a slightly subversive sense of humor.) Is it the same basic pattern as the cat tunic?

    • puu says:

      yeah, i hadn’t realized that it was totally exploding! it’s not the same basic pattern, although they do sort of resemble each other. you’ll see when i get a chance to post on the cat top that the pattern shapes are really, really different. they are, however, two of the few patterns designed for wovens, so that is probably why i went for them first 🙂

  2. Kimbersew says:

    I had forgotten how much I love the sesame aliens! And I would love to see a little video on how these pieces move once they’re on a body/ where does all the excess hang really? nice work!

  3. gingermakes says:

    Ahhh, those aliens were my favorite! Sesame Street was such a great show. I’m glad you’re loving the Drape Drape books– they’re so cool! I prefer to wear clothes with more structure, but I love seeing other people make these styles.

  4. meggipeg says:

    You have teased us with those little pictures of your tunics – I want to see more!! I have been Drape Draping quite a bit lately too, but haven’t tried the tunics yet. Looking forward to see what else you make 🙂

  5. smittenness says:

    Haven’t tried the tunic you’ve made. Looks lovely. I’m a bit in love with these books too but I know where you’re coming from regarding the instructions. It took a lot of puzzling over and eventually using my dress form to get it right – don’t get me started on the cape top! I think I unpicked it about four times until i got it right!

  6. It’s unofficial Drape Drape week on teh interwebs! Haha I love how it just so happened that all these bloggers I read are posting about it. And yes, I can totally see how saying it enough times would turn into those aliens…they were actually my favorite characters on Sesame Street when I was growing up.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s