How to Donate Hand-Sewn Face Masks

Many individuals, groups and businesses from around the world have generously offered to help assist in our preparedness efforts by sewing cloth masks. While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention does not suggest cloth material as a first-line defense against the coronavirus causing COVID-19, cloth masks work well for other conditions and can help conserve precious reserves of N-95 respirator masks.

This is a great example of communities sticking together in hard times and coming up with creative and effective ways to help with the crisis.

Healthcaremask.com approves :)

If you would like to help your community by sewing masks reach out to a mask-sewer organization near you and get started.
You can usually find these on Facebook or with a quick google search.

INSTRUCTIONS FOR HOMEMADE FACE MASK (WITH ELASTIC)

Make your own masks to donate hand-sewn face masks

Materials needed (with elastic)

  • Tight-weave cotton fabric (i.e. quilting cotton)
    • Fabric must be newly purchased within approximately the past year and never used.
    • Wash and dry fabric without fragrance or dyes prior to sewing.
  • Rope Elastic, beading cord elastic will work (you may also use 1/8” flat elastic if ¼” is unavailable. Some have used wider flat elastic and cut it in half with some success).

One adult mask requires two (2) 9”x6” pieces tight-weave cotton and two 7” pieces of 1/4 inch elastic. Therefore, one yard of 44” wide fabric yields 12-15 masks. You need 7.5 yards of elastic for 25 masks (14 inches per mask).

You can make two sizes: Adult or Child. Adult-sized masks will be the greatest need.

  1. Put right sides of cotton fabric together (Be sure any fabric design is placed horizontally.)
    1. Cut 9×6 (Adult) or 7.5 x 5 (Child)
  2. Starting at the center of the bottom edge, sew to the first corner, stop. Sew the elastic with the edge out into the corner. A few stitches forward and back will hold this.
  3. Sew to the next corner, stop, and bring the other end of the same elastic to the corner and sew a few stitches forward and back.
  4. Now sew across that top of the mask to the next corner. Again, put an elastic with the edge out.
  5. Sew to the next corner and sew in the other end of the same elastic.
  6. Sew across the bottom leaving about 1.5” to 2” open. Stop, cut the thread. Turn inside out.
  7. Pin 3 tucks on each side of the mask. Make sure the tucks are the same direction
  8. Sew around the edge of the mask twice.

INSTRUCTIONS FOR HOMEMADE FACE MASK (NO ELASTIC NEEDED)

Materials needed

  • Tight-weave cotton fabric (i.e. quilting cotton)
    • Fabric must be newly purchased within approximately the past year and never used.
    • Wash and dry fabric without fragrance or dyes prior to sewing.
  • Options for Ties
    • Bias Tape (either ½ or 7/8 as available)

OR

    • Make ties from strips of fabric indicated above (cut strips 2 ” wide by 16″ long)

One adult mask requires two (2) 9”x6” pieces tight-weave cotton and four (4) 16” pieces of bias tape or fabric ties (64” total per mask). Therefore, one yard of 44” wide fabric yields 12-15 masks. You need 21 1/3 yards of bias tape for 12 masks.

You can make two sizes: Adult or Child. Adult-sized masks will be the greatest need.

  1. Place right sides of cotton fabric together (Be sure any fabric design is placed horizontally.)
    1. Cut 9×6 (Adult) or 7.5 x 5 (Child)
  2. Starting at the center of the bottom edge, sew around the edges of the fabric leaving about 1.5” to 2” open.
  3. Stop, cut the thread. Turn inside out.
  4. Pin three (3) ½” tucks on each side of the mask. Make sure the tucks are the same direction.
  5. Make ties using Bias Tape or Fabric.
    1. Bias tape: stitch closed.
    2. Fabric: Fold in half, turn under 1/4 ” on each long side, iron in place. Stitch long edges closed.
  6. Pin one (1) tie at each corner.
  7. Sew around the edge of the mask twice, catching the bias tape as you go.