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Drafting fabric (2010)

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hi, i am a student at Elon university with a problem. Im currently designing a show and i would like to create realistic looking fabric in vectorworks. the actual texturing of the object isn't the problem, i cannot figure out how to make the object.

if anyone can help me i would very much appreciate it.

Thank you,

Ben S.

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i think more information would be useful, like a sketch of what you are trying to achieve. Curtains are easy, there are tools that will do that for you, some in Vectorworks and some you can buy http://www.landrudesign.com/DefaultFrameSet.htm?index.htm~LandruMnFrm

of this isn't what you had in mind, then you might find the drape surface does what you want,

Go to the Menu Bar.

Choose Model > 3D Power Pack > Create Drape Surface

for those of you in my user short sharp training (monthly) group, we covered drape surface in epodcast031, march 2007.

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Click My Stuff tab at top of this forum window and create a profile with a signature showing your VW version, OS and a bit about your hardware. That all helps with troubleshooting.

You probably want to read VW help about creating and working with NURBS surfaces: NURBS tools, lofts, drape surface, or conversions of other 2d & 3d objects, etc.

Example to make a bulging surface (assuming you have a recent version of VW):

1. Draw a 2d rectangle, give it a fill color and leave it selected.

2. Convert it to a NURBS surface: Menu>Model>3d Power Pack>Create Surface from Curves

3. Activate the 3d reshape tool in the 3d Modeling palette

4. In the OIP (Object Info Palette) click the Move pulldown & select Vertex Only, and check the Show Vertices box near bottom of OIP. You should see a blue handle at each corner.

5. Change the U & V degree fields from 1 to 2. Now your NURBS surface has blue handles at midpoints of each edge, and in the very center. (Degree is number of control point divisions on each edge)

6. Click the arrows in the Edit U &V fields until the center vertex flashes.

7. Increase the Z dimension field - this moves the center vertex up from the plane.

8. Render in Open GL & move your view around with the flyover tool to see the bulging shape.

9. Experiment with the value of the Weight field for each vertex - This controls shape of the bulge. Or you can drag the vertices with the 3d reshape tool.


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Have you tried the loft command?

Create a 2d polyline representing a cross section of the fabric.

Convert to nurbs

repeat for different cross sections.

Move the nurbs to the correct positions.

View in 3d - Loft With no rail (Shift-K)

Create Solid

Select each of the nurbs in turn


Apply texture & render

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  • 11 months later...
  • 8 years later...

@ford519 Please post again with items you are trying to model.  The techniques described above all work.  There are many other approaches. Different techniques apply to different cloth contexts - flat expanses, swags, pleated banners, hanging draped expanses, curtains, etc, etc.  Also, a cloth texture can make any 3d surface have a cloth appearance.  Assigning an image as the fill attribute can make any 2d shape have a cloth appearance.



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@ford519 Hi, again. 


I think for the comforter use 3d PowerPack> Drape Surface over a bed shape.

Apply a texture.


For the pillow, sort of depends on what you want.


Search of this forum reveals several threads about pillows, but they are pretty old and the demo files have been removed.

Here is one with description for a pillow:


There may be a few in this forum Resource Share - Symbols.  


Also, you can search the 3dWarehouse.  Those will be sketchup files, but your vwx2018 can import if they are older files.


OK Post back if you things are not working for you.





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thanks. the pillow works, but the comforter produces jagged results around the perimeter. also, i'd like to be able to have realistic messiness - folds in the fabric, pulled back sheets, etc.


edit: also i don't want to use 3dwarehouse, as it makes my files enormous if i use the beds from there. the 2d plan looks bad too

Edited by ford519
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