Baize And Wool Fabrics

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  • Post published:8th January 2021
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Our brief guide on choosing Fabric for Film, Television and Theatre Productions. Which to choose? What to look for when buying for a backdrop or set design.

Wool Fabrics Offer Many Advantages

Using a woolen fabric offers many advantages for use within film and television studios as well as in theatre productions.

1. Naturally Flame Resistant

Fabrics made purely from wool or a high wool content are naturally flame resistant. Pure wool garments are used as personal protective equipment (PPE) for fire and military personnel. As pure wool has a tendency to smoulder, rather than burst into flame.

How does this apply to a film, television, or theatre production?

With high voltage lighting rigs used on sets, fabrics can get hot. Using a wool-based fabric for a backdrop cloth, or within a set design, or even used for wardrobe, can help mitigate the fire risks, as well as look visually stunning.

2. Wool Fabrics Deaden Sounds

The second advantage of wool fabrics is that they deaden sounds and have been used historically for this purpose in the interior design of country estates. You can read more about this in our article Green Baize Doors – Part of British Heritage.

How does this apply to a film, television, or theatre production?

Designing sets, or even clothing and costumes with acoustics in mind and then using a material that can mitigate or soften ambient sound could shave production budget costs, as well as providing a practical solution to the transmission of sounds on set.

3. Wool Fabrics are Heavier

The heavier weight of wool fabrics, as opposed to cotton, means that when used as a backdrop, the fabric hangs really well. This lack of creases provides for a smooth, uncreased surface, that won’t distract from the foreground element.

4. Wool Fabrics are Naturally Hardwearing

Wool is tough. This comes from the fact that sheep are very hardy creatures that live in inclement environments. This means that wool is naturally warm, breathable and durable.

How does this apply to a film, television, or theatre production?

Choosing an apparel fabric for costume design or wardrobe is a savvy choice. These are often made using pure merino wool, using a twill weave – which is soft against the skin, keeping actors comfortable – but their durability means that they will withstand many costume changes and still look good.

What Are the Best Fabric for Film Productions?

Extra Wide Baize

The ranges of fabrics that we have categorised as Interiors Fabrics are ideally suited for these purposes. The Extra Wide fabrics, offer a usable width of 220 centimetres with lengths up to 50 metres.

Costume and Wardrobe Fabrics

For costume design, we stock an extensive range of wool fabrics designed specifically for clothing and apparel, that are soft on the skin and provide actors and actresses comfort and breathable garments.

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