We were asked by Illusion Design to manufacture drapes fit for a King to be installed in Madame Tussauds for their Coronation display. As you can imagine these weren’t any ordinary black wool serge theatre drapes, these were sumptuously adorned, elaborately embroidered, heavily pleated drapes.
Manufacturing such elaborate drapes takes a lot of planning and processing. Take a little look at the steps we take to create high quality drapes.
Working together with the events team at our parent company Presentation Design Services we manufactured a large variety of different drapes at our workroom in Derby. The drapes consisted of a gold velvet window drape, damson velvet throne room drapes, and a floral union flag backed with a scarlet red drape. Each area consisted of a variety of drape styles to create that luxurious and elegant feel you would expect within a royal palace. The perfect set up for the Coronation of the King!
IT'S ALL ABOUT THE LAYERING
Manufactured from a glorious gold velvet, the window drapes were made up of several elements. Working forward from the window were the 100% gold pleated dress curtains complete with embellished tiebacks. Directly in front of these sat a flat secondary pelmet with scalloped fringing to the base and four vertical bands of braiding across the front. Proudly sitting at the very front was the main pelmet, complete with a profile cut edge with added fringing and box-style jabots. An exceptionally elegant way to dress a window if we do say so ourselves!
THE MAIN EVENT
For the throne room, we manufactured four heavily embellished drapes; including a pleated backdrop, a wraparound drape and a decorative pelmet. Made from damson velvet, the backdrop was a double-sided drape with two large, embroidered designs which sat on either side of the centrally placed thrones. In front of the backdrop was the double-sided surround drape; that appeared pleated on the exterior and flat on the interior. This was then wrapped around the thrones allowing you to see both the interior and exterior of the drape simultaneously. The drape was embroidered with a replica royal crest and heavily embellished with fringing and large tassels on the edges. To really give a sense of grandeur in the throne room a heavily embellished pelmet sat above the surround drape. This was profile cut with fringing, tassels and embroidery to give it that look of royal elegance.
THOUSANDS OF FLOWERS
Working closely with our parent company Presentation Design Services we created a 2.4m x 3.8m floral union flag. We did this by individually attaching close to five thousand red, white and blue flowers to the British flag to create an eye-catching feature within the display. The flag was printed in two halves, with cut lines added to the artwork. This was so the printers could cut holes at the exact spacing the flowers needed to be placed. The print determined what colour flower you put in, to ensure it was an accurate representation of the flag. We hung the print on the drapes track and put a flower in each hole. Someone at the front posted the stem through, whilst someone at the rear put a custom CNC cut acrylic ‘washer’ on the back to hold the flower tightly up to the fabric. We then secured it with a wire hook through the stem. The floral flag was then backed by a scarlet red drape that was double-backed on itself and sewn on either side of the flag to hide the reverse side of the floral drape. A lengthy process, but the outcome was well worth the effort we collectively put in.
LONDON HERE WE COME
If you would love to see the Coronation display in real life then why not head over to Madame Tussauds, London to visit. We hear the drapes are the main attraction!