How to shift the bra COUPE LINE in the Merckwaerdigh e-course

In the last posts I described how the new Merckwaerdigh e-course I’m working on will teach you to relocate the bra straps. And now it’s time to talk about what you can do to alter the coupe line of a bra. For starters it’s important to know there are 3 major types of coupe lines :
• The vertical coupe line
• The horizontal coupe line
• The diagonal coupe line
Almost every bra design is based on one of these 3 main types coupe line.

Place and curve of the coupe line defines how the cup will shape the breast and therefore the most important part of the cup. You can change the direction of the coupe line by placing the ends on different spots; this will create a variety of cups with different effects on the breast. Let’s get into the vertical coupe line first since this is the coupe line of the master pattern.

The vertical coupe line shows a more pronounced cup, maybe even a bit pointy. The coupe line starts at midunder the cup and runs vertically upwards to the nipple point.
The master pattern already has a vertical coupe line but don’t take this too literally! Some changes are still possible :
• On the underwire line you can shift the starting point at most 1cm towards midfront or towards the side.
• Above the nipple point you can shift the line for the straps towards midfront or sidewards or even leave it out completely.

It is possible to shift the coupe line above the nipple. This is mainly done after relocating the straps because the original coupe line can sometimes end up at an odd spot on the top edge. In such circumstances shifting the coupe line could give more balance between both cup parts. With every change in the coupe line curve the effect will be :
• One of the cup parts flattens a bit which makes it easier to draw
• At the same time the other cup part gets more pointed and more difficult to draw.

You can shift the coupe line from the nipple point upwards to end at relocated straps. Often the front cup will then be larger in size but : the fabric design might become more evident (for instance in scalloped lace).
• Draw a straight line from the nipple point to the new straps connection.
• Correct the curves if these are a bit dented or angular (the circled area in the picture).
• To achieve this you will need a lot of patience because the coupe lines need to match up perfectly in length as well so :
try – erase – try again – and so on.

It gets a bit more tricky if you prefer the coupe line to end on the top edge. To get a good balance between the top edges of front cup and side cup they should end halfway the top edge. In general this should be the new ideal end of the coupe line. Correct it if the front cup curve is a bit dented or angular (the circled area in the picture).

In this example the side cup is not much larger than the front cup, this shouldn’t be a problem.
The front cup curve seems a bit angular around the nipple point (the circled area in the picture), you can correct this by shifting the coupe line slightly more sideward on the top edge.

Next time we’ll get into shifting the vertical coupe of the cup master pattern to a horizontal coupe line!

In the meantime ; since 8th of June 2020 the e-course is READY and available in the Merckwaerdigh shop on the Etsy platform!

For an overview of all the Merckwaerdigh internet activities and the button to subcribe to the Merckwaerdigh Newsletter take a look at


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