I’d been asked by my friends at work if I could make facemasks since we are in a shared workspace, our benches have been moved 2 meters apart but there is still a lot of contact whilst we are walking around the workshop and we’d like to try and limit the amount of germs that might be spreading.
I sat down for a few hours this afternoon, played around with some ideas for a face maks pattern and posted a photo of me in my mask on social media (It makes me look a bit like an old western bandit!) and had people ask for a step by step tutorial.
These are in no way supposed to do the job of a medical mask, they are purely to stop you touching your face as much and try to limit the amount of germs we may be transmitting. There has been a study on the efficacy of homemade masks using various materials but these are meant as more of a personal safety precaution.
Easy DIY (non-medical) Face Mask Pattern and Tutorial
You will need:
Cotton fabric – I use two pieces to make a 2-ply mask but you can add another layer or two if you feel it is of benefit
1.5m of bias tape (how to make bias binding with a bias tape tool and without a tool)
- With right sides together, mark out a 6 x 9 inch rectangle on your fabric to make your basic face mask pattern.
- Stitch along the top and bottom (long sides of your rectangle) lines and then trim the excess fabric away from all sides. The short sides can be left raw as they will be caught in our bias tape.
- Flip the rectangle right sides out and press the seams
- To start your pleats, place the mask good side down and measure 1.5 inches down from the top of the mask and press in your first fold with a hot iron, then measure 0.5 inches from the peak of that fold and press the opposite way. Repeat this 1.5 and 0.5 pattern one more time taking your measurement from the peak of the last pleat.
- Once all pleats are in place press firmly to help them hold. I like to use a higher heat and a lot of steam to help ‘set’ them, this makes the next step easier.
- Run a short stay stitch along the edge of the mask and across the pleats to help keep them flat.
- Cut your bias tape into two equal lengths. Take both length and find the middle point and match those up with the middle of the mask so that you’ve got even tails trailing either sie for tieing. Fold the bias tape to enclose raw edge of the mask and pin/clip in place. You can just sew the bias tape to the edge of the mask and be done but I prefer to stitch the entire length of the bias tape as it makes it stronger and easier to tie behind your head when wearing the mask.
- Trim off any loose threads and you’re done!