“Oh yeah, and we’ll probably need some drape.” These words have been spoken time and again as clients realize that they have left an important piece of their décor budget out. Drape. Whether it’s the misguided belief that event spaces will carry drape or as simple as seeing the “Décor” line item and not immediately be thinking about drape, it happens. Here are 5 reasons why drape should be top of mind when planning your next event. The gallery page over at Quest Events is our first stop when we’re looking for drape ideas.
This biggest use we see for drape is to hide things. Hide ugly walls, hide backstage areas, stage egress points, or we use Duvetyne to mask a road case so it can be used as a TV stand. The list goes on and on. It can be as simple as putting a line of drape up along the upstage edge and as complex as wrapping an entire ballroom in drape. Often times black velour drape is used, but color, fullness, and fabric selections are growing to give event designers a world of creative choices. The gallery page over at Quest Events is our first stop when we’re looking for drape ideas.
More often seen in trade shows, using drape to delineate space is nothing new. Yet using drape to delineate larger event spaces means you no longer have to work in a giant box. Do you need a hallway where there is none? Create it with drape. Do you need to change the size of the room? Set drape up a few feet off the wall. Need a circular space? You get the idea. Drape and especially thicker drape can be used to move the dimensions of a room to suit your needs.
3. Acoustic Treatment
Here’s a little tip from a former audio engineer the next time you’re on a site survey. Walk to the center of the room and snap your fingers. Do you hear a little echo? Some reverberation? Now imagine that echo and reverberation amplified. Imagine you’re an attendee trying to listen to a presenter. Will the natural acoustics distract from the message? The good news is drape can help. Well placed drape can muffle or disperse a rooms reverberance. It can help to make a “live” room sound better by diffusing sound waves and killing echo. This will make attendees focus on presentations, rather than the slapback echo they’re hearing from the back of the room.
Using drape for decor is more than just dressing a few walls. Imaginatively hung drape can turn a boring room into something amazing within just a few hours. Uplighting silver drape can be used to change the feel or mood of a room. Color options are no longer static but can be changed from time to time to completely reinvent a room. Bunched or side slung drape on a black drop can make presentations more photo-friendly by adding depth and life to the subjects. By experimenting with different styles and hang patterns you can quickly recycle a room set-up from previous years to look fresh and new. Also, don’t forget about star drops. With color change and chases, star drops can add a big punch to an otherwise boring black drop.
5. Theatrical Punch
Travelers are a type of drape setup that allows the drape to be opened and closed from a center point on the stage. They can be used to add a theatric flair to any event. They can also help to mask backstage activities between presentations. Is the president of your company introducing the next speaker? Use a traveler so attendees are not distracted by the next presenter getting his computer plugged into the AV equipment. Are you adding chairs and tables for a large round table discussion? Mask it with a traveler and reveal a brand new set when you open the traveler. Another option would be a kabuki drop. This is when a line of drape is dropped from the ceiling to reveal what’s behind it. While these can get pricey, they are an absolutely unforgettable way of revealing something.
Drape has a multitude of uses and should be thought of at the start of the design process, not at the end of it.