Many people are making their own cloth face masks and learning how to sew in the process. It’s a practical beginner’s sewing project and a great way to be of service to others by making masks to give to family and friends or to donate to places that need them such as hospitals.
I’ve made a few masks for my family. The first ones I made were in early April for my household. I had a limited amount of elastic, only enough to make three masks. I ordered some elastic and was informed that it wouldn’t arrive until July! (It ended up arriving in May).
I could only make 3 masks so I made one for my daughter, my son and myself. I made the type of masks with pleats. I had some leftover scraps of quilting cotton that were 100% cotton and tightly woven so I felt that it would be safe to use for masks. I cut 2 pieces of cloth which were 6 inches by 9 inches and made 3 pleats on the mask. I had a hard time with the pleats on the first mask that I made, especially sewing through all those layers of fabric. But as I went onto the 2nd and 3rd masks, the pleats and sewing went smoothly. The tutorial I chose to make these masks was a YouTube video by Thoughtful Creativity on “How to batch sew masks for hospitals”: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FW1TCQDN4do
When I made face masks for my parents, my mom wanted face masks that weren’t pleated. I found a website that contained videos and written instructions on how to make a shaped face mask. What I liked best about this website is that it included a PDF pattern for the shaped face mask. The face mask is lined on the inside with fusible interfacing. It basically has 3 layers which are two pieces of fabric and interfacing in the middle. Here is the link to that website: https://blog.treasurie.com/diy-mask/
I made more masks for my sister, her family and also my brother using this shaped face mask pattern. For the elastic that goes around the ears, I cut 6 1/2 inches of elastic for women and 7 inches for men or bigger faces.