WOW! 2020 just got even crazier!
I don’t know how life is where you are, but in my state in Australia, we have been put back into lockdown and it is now mandatory to wear face masks, lest you wish to receive a hefty fine.
So because of this, coupled with my desperate urge to add a creative touch to just about everything, a strong desire to make everything pink and the fact that I am stuck at home isolating until my Wisdom Teeth removal surgery next Friday; I have taken it upon myself to make face masks!
So in this post, I will be showing you how to make a face mask. There are images detailing every step to guide you along the journey. Please note that I used a sewing machine throughout the entire process, although it is entirely possible to do this by hand as the steps are exactly the same just with a needle and thread. If you have any questions or concerns please leave them in the comments below!
How to make a reversible fitted face mask without a nose wire.
(you can add a nose wire if you’d like, although these masks sit well without one)
What exactly do you need?
- A sewing machine OR needle and thread
- Thread, preferably white, black or a neutral colour that won’t stand out against the fabric
- Fabric that is 100% Cotton and not stretchy
- Elastic of any size (choose what is comfortable and/or convenient)
- Scissors that can actually cut fabric (I used large craft scissors but fabric scissors are preferred)
- Pencil/ Fabric Chalk (I lost my chalk and had to use a grey lead)
- Music/ YouTube/ Netflix/ etc. (for entertainment)
- A little bin for all your scraps and broken threads
- Patience. And lots of it.
Putting It All Together!
- Print off the Cotton Face Mask Pattern from Sweet Red Poppy‘s website! The template is sized from extra-large to child and is the exact stencil I used to make these. I used the TEEN size for my masks, measuring it against a single-use mask that fits me to determine the correct size.
- Choose your fabric. I am using two fabrics – one for each side – plain light pink and a white with flowers.
- Set up your sewing machine! I use a Brother LS-2150 sewing machine. I am not an expert at using a sewing machine and just set my machine to do a straight stitch. Use a test piece of material to test your machine before starting!
Make sure you know how to properly thread your machine. I couldn’t figure out what I was doing wrong when the thread kept knotting up on my test material, until I’d realised that I hadn’t threaded it properly!If you are hand sewing, thread your needle as usual with a neutral colour and complete the same stitching as I do on the machine.
- Creating your first layer:
1. Trace the template onto the back of your chosen material & cut this out.
2. Trace the template again, but this time on the front of your chosen material & cut this out
Creating your second layer:
Repeat the above steps with your other piece of your chosen fabric.
Things to note about this step:
* If you are using a non-patterned fabric, just cut two pieces in the same side as there is no distinct back/ front to the fabric
* If you are using the same fabric for both layers, just do step 1 and 2 twice.
- This step is optional. I prefer to hem the straight edge before continuing. This is the edge that the elastic will be adhered to and is the open edge which is used to turn the entire mask inside-out, so I wanted the edge to be neat.
To do this, I folded the raw edge, pinned it and then sewed over it, making sure to fold the same amount on all the other pieces so no piece was shorter than another.
- Now that you have all four pieces of your mask cut out and in front of you, place the pieces on top of one another so that the bottom of the fabric is facing outwards, like so:
As you can see, the pink material doesn’t have a top/bottom but the patterned fabric has the pattern on the inside of the two pieces.
Now you just have to pin the curved edge to hold the two pieces together. I found that 3 pins worked perfectly fine.
- SEWING TIME! Sew your stitch about half a centimetre into the material. I just eyeballed the entire thing, although I found that if I had my needle situated in the centre of the foot, with the edge of the foot on the edge of the fabric, I could sew a neat curve about .5 of a centimetre in.
Once you are done, your pieces should look something like this:
You can turn them inside you and have a looksie on how they would feel/ look on your face.
- Cut little v-shapes in the fabric along the curve. Be sure to cut close to, but not through the stitching.
This helps the material curve nicely so it doesn’t bunch up inside the mask.
- Place your pieces together with the jagged seams facing out, then pin the straight edges together. See the image below for a visual guide.
I didn’t pin the rest of the fabric as I found that once I lined up and pinned the straight edges, I could shuffle the rest of the fabric so the seams lined up before sewing.
The edges won’t perfectly line up and that’s okay, just don’t cut anything because any excess will just be folded inside the mask once you flip it inside-out.
- SEW TIME! Sew everything except the straight edge!
** Please do not sew up the straight edges or you will not be able to add your elastic or turn the mask the right way out.
- Turn your mask inside-out! Use one of the two open holes to turn the fabric so the patterns are facing outward.
You can use the end of a pencil to push the corners out and make them all pointy. Smooth out the mask, even iron it if you wish to do so (I didn’t).
Make sure all the stitching is complete and there are no holes or tears in the seams. This happened to me and all I did was turn the mask back inside-out and stitched back over the problem area.
- Measuring & Cutting the elastic. Place the mask against your face and test how much elastic you will need. This will require trial & error.
FYI, you won’t get it right the first time and will need to make adjustments once the elastic is stitched down.
- Pin the ends of the elastic down into the open ends of the mask, like so:
You will be sewing the holes closed with the ends of the elastic inside. Make sure you go over the elastics with a couple of back & forward stitches to cement them in place!
- YOU’RE ALMOST DONE!!!! Put on your mask to check that the elastics are the right length. If they aren’t, you can adjust them by pinching the elastic, pinning and then making a little stitch along the pinched area.
Don’t cut this off! Or you can, I’m not the boss of you. It’s your mask now!
- YOU’VE FINISHED YOUR MASK!! How does it feel?? I put mine on immediately and ran down to show my entire family!!
Since the mask is reversible, I made one side patterned (above) and the other plain (below).
I made four masks total today! One was a trial, two were for my Mum and this one. This one is for me and it is my favourite, mostly because it sits well but also the fabrics are adorable.
I hope you enjoyed this tutorial and that your mask/s have turned out as cute as my ones have!
How can people refuse to wear masks when there are fabrics as cute as these out there in the world?!
As I say at the end of every YouTube video, please stay safe, happy and healthy and even if your state has not made it mandatory to wear face masks, please do. Be considerate of those around you, especially the elderly as they are most at risk, and wear a face mask or face covering if you must leave the house.
Have you made or are planning to make a face mask? Or are you going to purchase a hand made face mask?
See you back here on Monday’s (book reviews), Wednesday’s (storytime/ writing updates) and Saturday’s (other bookish content).