Boylston Bra with Elastic Upper Cup and no Fabric Strap Tutorial

I am back with the second part of the Boylston Bra modification tutorial! Boylston Bra is one of my favorite patterns. It is such a pretty demi bra that gives me a nice rounded shape. It is also super versatile! I have made it into a foam cup bra, lace bra, fabric bra, and you can even make a bikini top out of it. If a pattern fits so well why not utilize it to it’s full potential, right?

In the first part of the tutorial I showed you how I modified the bra pattern for a lace upper cup to create a bra similar to the one below.


As much as I love lace, sometimes I prefer a simple no lace bra. Just as I am writing this, I am realizing there are a couple of ways to do it… Unfortunately  I did not take good pictures for the first option (because I just remembered about it lol) but I will try to explain it anyways.

Option 1

The first way would be to really do nothing to the pattern! Sorry for a blurry picture. I did not think to snap a new one for some reason.


I am using the picture from the first tutorial, so please ignore the red dots.


You can simply finish the top of the cup with the lingerie elastic like you would the sides of your bra (zig-zag from the right side, trim seam allowance, fold over, triple zig-zag). Then proceed to assemble the cup and bra like you normally would. When you get to point where you are finishing the side seams, just make sure you leave a little extra elastic on top of the cup as you would in Step 6 of the first tutorial. Then follow through in attaching the ring and strap as you would for the lace cup version.


Option 2

In this option, we will be modifying the upper cup to have a built in strap extension that looks like this when finished:

strap 1

The upper cup is finished with lingerie elastic and is thin enough to be fed through the ring, then folded over to hold the ring and strap at the top.

Step 1

2-1   2-2

I started off by double checking the width of the elastic I would be using. The pink one is the regular lingerie elastic and the purple is my strap elastic. The pink one is 3/8″ and the strap is 1/2″.

Step 2


Working on the actual pattern line, ignoring the seam allowances, I measured in form the top outside corner on the upper cup two increments of 1/4″ which together make up the width of my strap elastoc. The small dot in between the measurements is where the center of my strap should be.

Step 3


Draw a straight line through the center mark. I drew my line perpendicular to the direction of stretch. I am not a pattern drafter and I don’t know what is exactly right here, but I think that even if your line is not perpendicular to the direction of stretch, you will be okay. Just draw a line straight up in the direction of where you think your strap should go. I measured up and marked my line at 1 1/2″. I wanted to make sure I have enough fabric to fold over when I attach the ring. I can always cut the excess off in the end.

Step 4


Measure 1/4″ on each side of you 1 1/2 ” mark. It doesn’t have to be perfect, it is even okay if your width at the top is 3/8″ instead of 1/2″. We want a slightly pointy shape that gets thinner towards the end.

I drew my new side cup line in red by hand. You just want to make sure it has a nice even curve and is not jagged. You can use French curve if you are not comfortable with drawing the line free hand.

Step 5


Draw the new upper cup line on the other side blending it into the previous line. You can do it using pencil so that you can erase it if you don’t like your line. Just make sure it has a nice even curve, rather than a sharp turn.

Step 6


Lastly, we will add seam allowances. Since we are finishing the cup with elastic, we need to add 3/8″ seam allowance on each side. Add it in and smooth out your curves. Looking at my new pattern I think I could have made it a little thinner on the end, but this is a good place to start.

There you go! Finish the top of your cup with an elastic after you assemble both cups. Put the rest of your bra together, and in the end you will have a cute little strap extension that you can fold over onto the strap ring and attach to the cup. Here are some close ups of what the finished bra looks like.

strap 2

Ha! I did not realize that the photo was a bit more blurry than I would have liked. But you can still see the part where the strap extension is fed through the ring and folded over.

strap 3

And here is the inside. Pardon the extra thread that I should have cut off. But you can see that the strap extension is attached to the cup and the excess is cut off. I used this method to create the bra below:


There are so many options for modifying this pattern! I hope this helped you get started. Happy bra making!





#, #, #, #, #


  1. This is beautiful! I’ve been thinking about bra making lately, and I really love the Boylston, but didn’t love the fabric straps. I’ll remember this if/when I give it a try!

    1. Thank you, Lisa! Bra making is so much fun, I definitely recommend it 🙂 I am the same, I love the pattern and I do like the fabric straps, but I do prefer regular straps. I love the way fabric straps look when someone else makes them though!

  2. Your bras are beautiful! I think that one of the best parts of bra making is all the cool things you can do with small changes to completely change the look. I am currently working on the PUG Classic bra pattern, but I have been wondering about the Orange Lingerie patterns, and how they compare. I think I’m going to try the Marlborough next.

    1. Thank you Heather! I agree, small changes like fabric and even different kind of topstitching (or no top stitching!) can really change the look.
      PUG is a good pattern! I read a lot of good reviews about it. I am still figuring out ways to modify it myself. Very solid basic pattern 🙂 I was hesitant to try Orange Lingerie at first, but I really like her patterns. They are well drafted and fit me with minimal changes 🙂


Leave a Reply