With Fall here and Winter approaching its time for warm weather clothing and other items such as comforters, pillows, blanket, and bedspreads. It's also the time of year questions start rolling in about creating these items. What software to use? How to keep polycount down and so forth.
All these questions can be answered simply with one application… at least in my workflow… Marvelous Designer.
Using INTERNAL LINES and the LAYER CLONE OVER/UNDER options this can be done simply with no sewing in most cases as the cloning takes care of that tedious little aspect.
Once you grasp the basic concept you can create and simulate these nice little touches that help to sell an audience on a scene. Having a blanket draped over a character or couch is much more effective in relaying the feel of a cold season than without.
You don't even need an avatar or object in the scene unless you are going to specifically drape these items over the object. Throw in the lack of sewing and you are down to drawing out primitive shapes and where to place them.
Complex sewing patterns can be as easy as a few right-click menu choices in Marvelous Designer so let's get started with a basic comforter.
- Start off with a basic rectangle shape for the comforter in a size and shape you are comfortable with. Contrary to popular opinion size IS important in Marvelous Designer (MD) to a certain degree, but we're only doing soft props not characters so these items can be easily resized in MD's 2D window by selecting and manipulating the overall scale of the 2D cloth then re-simulating. Your cloth size will depend on what prop you are covering or what you are using it for.
- We'll be creating padding, so we'll need internal lines both horizontally and vertically to form the padding. MD will do it for us. Select the line you wish to duplicate and right-click selecting OFFSET AS INTERNAL LINE. Make your choices from the pop-up menu. Experiment with different spacing and number of lines. Do this for both horizontal and vertical lines.
- Select the entire cloth, right-click then select LAYER CLONE (OVER). This duplicated the cloth AND SEWS IT FOR US… including all those internal lines!
- Select the TOP (over) cloth and set the PRESSURE to 20 or so. Select the LOWER cloth and set it's PRESSURE to -20. This pushes the cloth in opposite directions and creates the padded pockets between internal lines.
- Run the simulation.
That's it... other than experiment with settings.
You are now ready to create your own pillows, comforters, and bedspreads without the need to sew unless you want to make something like a sleeping bag. In that case, duplicate, sew one side and add a zipper to the other side and one end which can then open or close however you wish. Pillows are a snap with this method.
There is one thing to note. If you offset internal lines then clone and go back later to add more offset lines you have to clone again but fear not… there is no sewing so just delete the original “clones” and clone a new set then run the cloth simulation.
You can crisscross and angle internal lines too. Experiment to see what padded shapes you can get when combined with pressure.
Oh, yeah… one more thing… we didn't even go into different cloth! This was using the default cloth so experiment with different cloth presets and settings too.
No excuse for your characters going cold now. Import a bed, couch or chair OBJ and use the simulation to warm your characters and scenes by draping the cloth around and/or on them.
M.D. McCallum, aka WarLord, is an international award-winning commercial graphics artist, 3D animator, published author, project director, and webmaster with a freelance career that spans over 20 years. Now retired, M.D. is currently working part-time on writing and select character development projects. You can learn more about MD on his website.