One element of the Emily skirt that can completely change the final look of the skirt is the fabric. The shape and silhouette of the skirt will be completely different based on the weight and body of the fabric. Today, I’ll be talking about the types of fabric, the effect of that fabric, as well as showing some fashion inspiration for your choices.
First, let’s talk about body and what it means in regard to fabric. Body is the aspect of fabric that affects the drape of the fabric. Let’s break that down a bit further. Body is how much the fabric stands out on it’s own vs. falls straight down. It doesn’t necessarily have to be heavy, although heavier fabrics tend to have more body. An example of lightweight fabric with body is organza. A heavier fabric with more drape might be a crepe type fabric, especially a wool crepe.
Let’s look at some examples. For me, I prefer to wear versions of this skirt with more body, because it gives the skirt more of an A-line shape. So, here’s a picture of me in a medium-weight woven fabrics with a decent amount of body.
As you can see, there are clearly defined fabric “cones” that give the skirt fullness and shape.
Fabrics with more drape loose the A-line shape, but gain a fullness and have a flow when you walk. Woven fabrics like lawn and crepe would be in this category. These fabrics are often made with rayon, silk, or even blended with polyester.
Colette has a great article on this, for those that want to have a little more information and a great infographic. Please note, the fabrics on her graphic are a sampling of fabrics, there are many more types that you’ll encounter in the fabric store. Just test the fabric you find by feeling the weight and looking at the drape. Read more here.
What to Choose
My personal recommendation is this: if you have a low hip-to-waist ratio (apple and column shapes), then consider a fabric with more body. The A-line shape will flatter and give you more of a waist. If you have a high hip-to-waist ration (pear shapes), than consider a fabric with less body. The more drape to the fabric, the slimmer the profile.
Don’t take this as the final answer though; experiment and find your personal prefernce in fullness versus drape. Ultimately, it’s about finding a fabric that matches your preference of fit and that you love to think about wearing. There’s no wrong answer to the fabric you make your skirt out of as long as you love the result!