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how to make a senior drape for pictures

A senior drape, often used in high school senior portraits, is a formal piece of clothing that resembles a graduation gown. It’s typically a black or dark-colored garment that covers the shoulders and upper body, creating a classic and timeless look for senior photos. Here’s how you can make a senior drape for pictures:

Materials You’ll Need:

  1. Fabric: You’ll need a piece of fabric in a dark color like black, navy blue, or dark gray. The fabric should be wide enough to drape over the shoulders and upper body comfortably. A standard width is around 45 inches (114 cm).
  2. Scissors: To cut the fabric to the desired size.
  3. Sewing Machine (Optional): If you have sewing skills and want to create a finished edge, a sewing machine can be useful.


  1. Measure and Cut the Fabric:
    • Measure the length you want for the drape. A common length is from the shoulders down to just below the waist or hips. The exact length will depend on your preferences and body size.
    • Use scissors to cut the fabric to the desired length. Ensure that the cut edge is straight and even.
  2. Create a Finished Edge (Optional):
    • If you have a sewing machine and want a finished edge, fold over the raw edge of the fabric by about 14 inch (0.6 cm) and sew a straight stitch along the edge. This will prevent fraying.
  3. Try On and Adjust:
    • Put on the fabric drape and adjust it to fit comfortably over your shoulders and upper body. It should hang down smoothly without wrinkles or bunching.
  4. Style and Position:
    • Adjust the drape so that it covers your shoulders and upper arms. It should resemble a classic gown or drape for the photos.
  5. Prepare for the Photoshoot:
    • Coordinate the drape with the rest of your outfit for the photoshoot. It’s common to wear a simple, solid-colored top or dress underneath to complement the drape.
  6. Posing and Photography:
    • Work with your photographer to find flattering poses and angles that highlight the drape’s classic and formal appearance. Senior drape photos often have a timeless and elegant feel.
  7. Accessorize (Optional):
    • If you want to add a finishing touch, consider accessorizing with a strand of pearls or a simple necklace. These can enhance the formal look of the senior drape.
  8. Enjoy the Photoshoot:
    • Relax, have fun, and enjoy the senior photoshoot. It’s a memorable experience, and the senior drape adds a touch of sophistication to your portraits.

Remember that the style and design of senior drape photos can vary, so feel free to customize the look to suit your preferences and the overall theme of your senior portraits. If you prefer not to make your own senior drape, you can also consider renting or borrowing one from your school or a photography studio.