Cloth Simulation question

I have a cloth simulation where a character wearing a dress spins around fairly fast. The cloth simulation isn’t able to keep up with the collision and clips through it even though I have the collision settings set up for both objects. Is there some setting I should change? I also notice the cloth stretches, so I’m not sure which slider controls that either. Finally, There’s a moment where the character is lifted up higher and the skirt sort of overturns itself, showing more of the body mesh than it’s supposed to. I’m not sure if there’s a way to keyframe or at least influence the shape of cloth as it’s being simulated. But that would be great!

I think it’s possible if you use the video method.
If you want a simulation similar to reality, you need a simulation specializing in clothing.

As with most Blender Simulation you probably need to scale everything up 10 - 50 times bigger.

Weight painting is used to control the cloth - so you need to learn to Weight paint to add extra stiffness along the cloth seams and edges. That is to imitate the double or triple folded material that gives extra stiffness.
And use either Dynamic Paint or GeoNodes to change the weight painting real time during the animation.
It may also help to have a low poly mesh doing the simulation (or part of it) and adding a mesh deform or surface deform modifier to the dress and setting the low poly mesh as the target in that modifier. Then you keep more stiffness in the low poly helper mesh, but the dress can still jiggle where needed. The surface / mesh deform modifiers have influence sliders so you can raise the effect strength only when needed - like when the cloth ‘overturns itself’. Do several modifiers with each one having their own vertex group to control the different parts of the dress. Again - adjust the vertex groups location real time with GeoNodes if needed…

Cloth Settings. Read them to work out what will stop the stretching. Or click through the cloth presets and take note of what changes.


I covered a number of tips and tricks for cloth simulation, but at the end of the day, it takes a fair bit of testing and messing around with.

@oo_1942 These are great tutorials! I’ve actually seen them both before. I do have an armature that the cloth is attached to, but it’s the simulation itself that makes it fold over itself (It’s an animation where a character wearing a dress is lifted. but then the skirt flings too far upwards. It behaves correctly physics wise, it’s just that I don’t want it to animate that way.)

@Matakani This sounds pretty advanced! Would you recommend any tutorials for learning about dynamic painting or GeoNodes?

@thetony20 Thank you so much again for introducing me to this method! I am using it for my current project. I think I’ve found a good cloth setting that somewhat fixes the problem, but regarding the last test where you use an empty and a hook modifier, how do you get the empty to correctly follow the bone or armature without the location getting offset?

Sorry - no precise suggestions. Have not had to watch a dynamic paint tutorial for years & I keep finding new people doing useful geonodes every couple of days.
Read the Manual about dynamic paint. Learn what the different settings do. Then go find tutorials on the specifics.
I am still confused about half of what Geonodes can do… I am far from offering advice :man_shrugging:t4:

If you want to do something complex, you will need to do a lot of study. I spent probably 3/4 of a year studying classic art and photography to help understand how to do materials / lighting. Its the same with all the parts of blender - months of study are needed. Animation studios have programmers customizing software just to do things like a person in a dress spinning.

Simple, I don’t. The only movement that the empty has, is from the manual animation I apply to it. It is already positioned where the bone ends up and then just moves to lift the cloth.

I messed around in the past with pre-setting up a bunch of empties that one could use to tweak the simulation and make all of them follow the cloth mesh as it moved from frame to frame. But it got very messy and half the time would just ‘wig’ out and not work at all.

Short of a total redesign of the simulation system (GeoNodes at some point), I decided that the best option was to manually add and place the empties and hooks as and when needed after all the simulation was done. Then just tweak any last bits that needed it.

At which point the whole thing is then exported out as an Alembic file and added back on to the main mesh/character for final rendering.

It’s a lot of messing about, but currently the best that Blender can do as far as I’m aware. This is why most with a budget don’t bother and just use Marvelous Designer.