Originally Posted by Penlowe
When I was selling wedding gowns we only ever called them "pick ups". It's an entirely modern thing (gasp!) first begun in the formal wear industry.
Here is the thing about that style: if not done in a fairly heavy bodied fabric, and worn over a petticoat or hoop, they look like crap. I've seen dozen of commercially produced dresses using this technique, worn without a petticoat, in cheap fabrics: every one of them just looked like the girl got her dress stuck in her underwear O.o Even over a petticoat, but in thin wimpy fabrics they just look like she just slept in her dress.
To look good, the fabric itself must hold some shape without any stuffing or padding inside the folds. The kind of fabrics prom dresses are typically made from will fall completely flat.
Woo hoo! I've been using the "right" term all these years!
But I agree about the weight of the fabric and a petticoat. We just tired on dresses for my brother's wedding that have the pick-ups and they were made of a nice strong satin and had a built in petticoat that was actually good (I pick apart commercial clothing so bad) and it made all the difference in how that dress draped on each of us that tried it on.