In the last posts I described how you can make some alterations in the vertical coupe line of the cups with the Merckwaerdigh master pattern. This time we’ll talk about how you can shitft this into a horizontal coupe line. This type of coupe line pushes the breast up a bit from below which makes it appropriate for a small cup to seem fuller or create more volume above in a sagging breast.
What are the CHARACTERISTICS of a horizontal coupe line?
The horizontal coupe line always :
starts on the underwire line at the front and
ends on the underwire line at the side.
This means the coupe line does not always have to be literally horizontal! But it does change the way the cup is defined, instead of a front cup and a side cup the horizontal coupe line creates a lower cup and an upper cup.
Balance is important
How the coupe line is placed defines the balance between lower and upper cup. Try here as well to keep both cup parts about equal in size.
In general :
• The lower you start the coupe line at the front the higher you end at the side.
• The higher you start the coupe line at the front the lower you end at the side.
• If you can easily draft the coupe line curve in the lower cup it will be
more difficult to draft a good curve in the upper cup.
• If you can easily draft the coupe line curve in the upper cup it will be
more difficult to draft a good curve in the lower cup.
The general rule is as always : practice makes perfect!
WHAT EFFECT DO THE CUP PARTS CREATE?
• The upper cup defines shape and appearance :
the more curve the more pointy the cup seems.
• The lower cup determines the proportions :
the coupe line must always touch the nipple point.
And now the actual drafting! In the Merckwaerdigh e-course (I’m still working on the translation from Dutch and will soon be finished) we start with the lower up. You draw the new coupe line in several phases, 4 of them to be precise. It would go to far to describe every detail of every step here but basically what you do first is connecting the master pattern cup parts at the underwire line and the nipple point. This creates an overlap.
In this setup you can deceide on the starting and ending points of the new coupe line. This gives 3 points the new coupe line must touch :
• nipple point (N in the picture)
For some guiding you first connect these points in straight lines and then add some curving to compensate for the loss of space the overlap created. Sounds easier than it really is but in the new e-course I’ll explane every detail step-by-step to guide the buyer through this process. Which also involves an extra option to split the lower cup and pointing out some possible pitfalls. A possible result is shown in the next picture:
It all depends though where you place points F and S, at any different spot it will change the shape of the lower cup completely!
As you might suspect, to draft the upper cup you need a different setup of the master pattern front and side cup. This time the coupe lines come together from the nipple point up to the straps.
The coupe line is in the upper cup always less curvy than in the lower cup. But a flatter coupe line usually will have a shorter length. It will be useful to add some extra length on forehand right at the start.
Next step is to trace starting point F and ending point S from the lower cup and draw a curved coupe line between them. In the upper cup though, the coupe line does not need to touch nipple point N from the master pattern. The function of the upper cup is not so much to secure the proportions but mainly to define the shape and look of the cup.
• The more curve in the upper cup coupe line, the more pointy the cup will seem.
• The more flat the upper cup coupe line, the more natural the cup will seem.
Of course the cup will look completely different again when you place starting point F and/or ending point S on another spot. It’s great fun to try out some different options. The more you practice the more you will start to understand the effect on the breast. Specially when you sew a 3D quick test from interlining fleece, that will give you even more insight than just a flat paper drawing!
And a different look for the cups is not just coming from the way the coupe line is drawn. In these examples the midfront an straps are still the way they are in the very basic master pattern. But in the new Merckwaerdigh e-course you’ll also learn to alter midfront (STEP 1) and the straps (STEP 2). Imagine what a shipload of options you will have to draft a bra in almost any way you’d like!
Next time we’ll get into drafting the diagonal coupe line for the cup master pattern, giving even more options!
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 www.merckwaerdigh.nl