Princess seam and the panel seam viennese style are both seams for tops. The princess seam runs from the shoulder down, the Viennese seam from the armhole in a bow down. These two seams are used on the front and back of dresses and jackets in women’s and men’s fashion, save a bust dart and lead to a close-fitting silhouette. A variation of the princess seam is the so-called pyramid seam with the seam lines running from the neckline into the side seam.
This article is an excerpt from the book Metric Patternmaking for Dresses and Blouses. Further instructions for the basic pattern blocks and variations for the most important shapes of dresses and blouses can be found in this book.
Princess Seam – Panel seam from the shoulder
This very common design is especially suitable for figures with larger bust and close-fitting garments that need shaping seams. Even a large bust dart intake can be hidden discretely in the front panel seam. Use the basic dress block for Plus sizes as a template for the pattern development. The dart intake of the side back dart remains as ease in the back pattern.
Princessdress – Draft 1
Relocate the bust dart 2 – 3 cm at the shoulder seam. Measure 2 cm for a styleline that runs directly over the bust point and 3 cm if the styleline is placed around 1 cm away from the bust point. Plot the front styleline. First, draw a guideline Which ends 1.5 cm above the bust point for the tight seam line. Then draw the front styleline contoured to the body shape as shown in the illustration. Draw the front stylelines as straight lines from the dart intake at the waist to the hem line. The front stylelines overlap thereby at the hem line. How much they overlap depends on the amount of intake at the waist and hip. A small amount of intake at the hip line can remain in the pattern and the overlap can be placed higher for more overlap and a Wider hem. The centre back can be designed as seam line or fabric fold and has to be adjusted accordingly as shown in the figure 1. Transfer the position of the styleline from the front to the back shoulder and distribute the necessary Width for the back shoulder ease accordingly (0.3 – 0.5 cm).
Measure 1 cm to the right from this point and draw a guideline to the waist. Mark the intake at the waist (approx. 3 cm) and mark the halfway point. Square down from the centre of the intake to the hem line or draw the dart middle line parallel to the centre back depending on and the shape of the centre back either tapered or straight; Overlap the back stylelines so that the back hem Width is equal to the front hem. Draw the back styleline from the shoulder slightly curved towards the 1- cm guideline and further to the waist. Lengthen the intake at the armhole to the styleline and mark the intake as a closing amount. Extend the hem 2 cm at each side seam.
Princessdress – Draft 2
Copy all pattern pieces and complete the overlapping sections. Join the pattern pieces and the seam lines and blend the hem line and the seam transitions. Close the intake at the back armhole and blend the armhole curve and the styleline.
Viennese seam from the Armhole
The classic viennese styleline comes from the armhole and runs in a nicely shaped curve over the bust to the waist and flares out at the hem. The princess seam line is perfect for close-fitting garments with a nicely shaped silhouette and a flared hem.
Dress with panel seam viennese style – Draft 1
Mark the position of the Princess styleline at the armhole anywhere between the armhole notch and the shoulder line, as shown in the illustration or according to the desired design. Draw the stylelines as already described for the shoulder Princess seam. Mark the intake at the waist and the overlap at the hem. Shape the seam lines according to the figure. The back seam line can be placed on the waist dart or more to the left and ends in the armhole at the same height than the front seam line or slightly higher. Mark the intake at the waist and square down from the centre of the intake to the hem line. Overlap the back stylelines so that the back hem is equal to the front hem.
Dress with panel seam viennese style – Draft 2
The illustration shows the finished pattern pieces with additional hem extension. The hem can be more or less flared, depending on the desired design. For more flare at the hem add 2 — 10 cm at each seam line. For equal seam lengths, draw circular arcs using a pencil, a pin and a measuring tape. Mark the pivot point at the beginning of the seam extensions, which can be either at the waist, or below the waist.
Production Pattern Pieces
Production Pattern Pieces for the Industry Develop the production pattern pieces after the fit has been verified:
- Blend, true and equalize all seam lengths and seam transitions.Add seam allowances and hem allowances.
- Add seam allowances and hem allowances.
- Create all small pattern pieces such as facing and pocket pieces and all interfacing pieces.
- Develop an efficient lining pattern.
- Label all pattern p1eces (size, style, piece name and number).
The pattern sheet contains a dress for the civil wedding and a one-piece suit in sizes 36-46.
You will find pattern constructions and patterns for dresses, jackets and coats with panel seam in our online shop.