How to Determine Drapery Fullness For Your Pipe and Drape Display

pipe and drape event setup

Pipe and drape is an easy, convenient and simple way to dress a space for events, exhibits, weddings, and more. A typical pipe and drape setup is comprised of bases, uprights, crossbars and drapery panels. In this post, we’ll focus on how to determine how much and what kind of drape you’ll need to create a beautiful and memorable pipe and drape setup for your event.

When deciding on how many drapery panels to purchase, you’ll need to consider the desired fullness for your drapes. “Fullness” is essentially the gathering or bunching of fabric to create a luxurious ripple effect in the drape. Before we determine how much fullness you’ll need, it’s important to consider some other key factors:

What is the purpose of your drapery?

Are your event drapes meant to create walls or barriers in your space? Perhaps you’d like to hide unwanted operations like catering, the sound booth, or undesirable features that are permanent to a room. Maybe a sheer fabric is necessary so attendees can still see through the partition. Drapes can also help absorb sound in a room when a thicker fabric with fullness is used. Most of the time, drapes are used to simply provide a beautiful backdrop or frame a space.

What fabric will work best for your pipe and drape setup?

Depending on your event’s aesthetic, drapery panels for pipe and drape can be sewn from a variety of fabrics. For example, if you’re looking for something light and airy for a wedding or bridal shower, Voile is a great choice. For added elegance, you might spring for a luxurious velour like Valdosta®. Georgia Stage offers fabrics in a variety of weights and colors to give life to your event drapery dreams. Looking for more color or fabric options? All of our drape panels for pipe and drape displays are custom sewn so just ask!

If you still have questions, check out our complete guide to choosing fabric for your pipe and drape backdrop.

What is the budget for your drapery?

The final factor to consider for event drapery is budget. Economical fabric choices include Banjo, the trade show standard, and EventTex®, a slightly richer looking, but affordable fabric. Additionally, our convenient, all-inclusive Pipe & Drape Backdrop Kits make creating a drapery wall a cinch. To get a quote on a custom pipe and drape set up, contact one of our Stageperts. Whichever route you choose, we’re happy to make suggestions to help you stay within budget for your pipe and drape project!

Drapery Fullness Explained

pipe and drape display with flat drapery
This pipe and drape display shows two Banjo drape panels and is “flat” or has 0% Fullness.

0% Fullness aka “Flat”

A drape that hangs with no bunching or ripples is “flat” or has 0% fullness. A flat drape backdrop can be used to create a more modern or minimalistic aesthetic. You can also use a flat drape display to create a photo backdrop at your event like you might see in a photo studio. It can also be a solution to create a simple barrier or drapery wall in your space. To determine the width of fabric needed to create a “flat” drape backdrop or one with 0% fullness, measure the distance between your two uprights.

pipe and drape display with 50% fullness
Adding a third Banjo drape panel to the display above creates a display with 50% Fullness.

50% Fullness

To achieve some bunching in your drapery panels, 50% fullness is a great place to start. Your pipe and drape display will still appear to have some movement and dimension without looking too intricate. To determine the width of fabric needed to create 50% fullness, measure the distance between your two uprights and multiply by 1.5.

pipe and drape display with 100% fullness
Adding a fourth Banjo drape panel creates a display with 100% Fullness.

100% Fullness

To achieve the fullest look for your event drapery, opt for 100% fullness. This provides a level of fullness which achieves a rich, luxurious, and voluminous feel. Drapery with 100% fullness can also help decrease fabric opacity and absorb sound (both dependent on choice of fabric). If your event requires an extra flowy backdrop or drape wall for a truly memorable look, this may be the choice for you. To determine the width of fabric needed to create 100% fullness, measure the distance between your uprights and multiply by 2.

Greater than 100% Fullness

For some events, drapery with greater than 100% fullness may be desired to help create an air of opulence or extravagance. This level of fullness looks incredible with lighter fabrics like Voile that look better gathered.

Georgia Stage is your one stop shop for pipe and drape panels, hardware and accessories. Shop pre-sewn drapery panels here and easy to set up pipe and drape backdrop kits here.

Shop our complete line of pipe and drape products here.

Or contact us for a quote on your custom pipe and drape project.