Event design has its own language and event draping is no exception. Sometimes we throw around the terms and we forget that not everyone knows what the heck we are talking about! So, to clear things up, I thought it would be a good idea to provide you with a glossary of event draping terms we use ALL THE TIME. Then, the next time you hear us talking about event draping such as ceiling treatments, backdrops or wall masking, you can join in the conversation!
General Draping Terms
Swag – A piece or pieces of fabric that is fastened to hang in a drooping curve. You will hear us used this term when talking about backdrops, table draping, and ceiling treatments.
Voile – A soft, sheer fabric, usually made of 100% cotton or cotton blended with linen or polyester. The term is French for veil. Most of our voile is IFR, meaning it is fire retardant and safe to hang in event spaces.
Satin – Our favorite event fabric! This fabric is smooth and has a brushed matte finish. It is a heavier fabric than voile and is great for backdrops, wall masking or room dividing.
Upright – we also call this “pipe and drape”. Uprights are adjustable aluminum poles that are used to hold drape support (you will learn what that means next!). Here at ILLUME we have uprights that can go from 7 ft tall to 16 ft tall.
Drape Support – there are also called crossbars. They and expandable, and attach to the uprights and hold the drape up similar to how curtain rods work in your home.
Base – flat pieces of steel that act as the feet for the uprights. They are HEAVY and we try to hide them from you when we set up at your event.
Freestanding Draping Terms
Backdrop – drape hung behind a focal point. In our business, this is most often a ceremony spot or the bridal party table in the reception space.
Ceiling Draping Terms
Starburst – This is fairly self-explanatory. Similar to the bowtie, this ceiling drape pattern will start in the center of the dance floor and then form a starburst pattern outward – we can customize the number of “points” based on what you would like.
Linear – Another ceiling drape term. This means that the drape is hung across the ceiling in a straight line and is a good option if you are looking for maximum coverage of the ceiling.
Bowtie – A popular ceiling drape pattern. We start this one in the center of the dance floor and make it look like a giant bow tie when you look up!
Spiderweb – Another ceiling drape pattern. The best way to define this one is with a photo…here it is!
Table Draping Terms
Cinderella Table Draping – a popular head table draping technique. It is sheer draping the covers the front of the bridal table with brooches holding up various parts of the draping. By adding the brooches, we are able to create a look similar to Cinderella’s dress!
Well, those are the terms you will hear us use most often! If you are still not sure, just ask! Next time you hear us chatting, jump on in you know our language! And we love to talk about what we do. In next week’s post we will go over some common lighting terms, so get ready!
Until next time…