In this pandemic, you can’t be more careful. So, to make sure that you are following the best safety precautions, it is imperative to have a mask. If you are interested in making a reusable mask, or simply want to design your own mask that has a bit more flair, here are some guidelines for how to create one.
Note: This will require either a sewing machine or hand-sewing materials.
- Take two pieces of rectangular cut fabric, facing the “right sides” of the fabric and sewing them together.
- Sew along around the edges of the fabric. Make sure to leave a small gap open on the long side of the fabric.
- Pull the fabric through the gap, so that it is inside out, with the right side of the fabric on the outside.
- After that, you should have your sewn edges on the inside of a two-sided rectangle.
- Using six sewing pins, make three evenly spaced pleats on both sides of the fabric. Do this by placing one pin, then two pins evenly spaced, then another two pins evenly spaced, and then finally a sixth pin.
- Make sure to face the pins in the same direction when you tuck in the pleats.
- To create the pleats, adjust the first pin so that it meets the second, the third to meet the fourth, and the fifth to meet the sixth, as you tuck. Do this on both sides. You should be left with three pins among three pleats on each side.
- Stitch with your machine all along the edges of the rectangular material, taking out the pins as you stitch along the perimeter. This sews the pleats into place and closes the gap you previously left open.
- If you want to use a strip of fabric for the strap, take a longer piece of fabric and fold it over in half lengthwise, and then iron it.
- Then fold the raw edges in and iron it again.
- Match the centers of your strap to the long sides of the mask.
- Pin the straps down to the long edges of the mask.
- Stitch all the way down each strap, grabbing the edges of the mask as you pass them in the machine. The straps should extend past the fabric rectangle of the mask.
- You have completed your mask!
Caitlin Cosentino studied Film and Digital Media at University of California, Santa Cruz, and is a creative writer. She currently lives in Los Angeles.