Another Pattern Try

Of course, I just had to try a new mask pattern that was floating around on Facebook (sorry, should have saved the link to the video to credit the designer). This one is cool because it is quick and easy to sew from four identically cut tapered rectangles (the flaps are folded in half and sandwiched between the other two layers before stitching along the two curves). I like how it lays flat when not worn. If you fold it in half, it kind of looks like a little purse. I didn’t bother to rotate the ear loops to hide the knots (or change from blue to white thread) since I was making it for myself.

Masked Selfie, July 2020

Obviously, if you choose fabric with a one-way design like I did, you’re not supposed to wear it upside down. Did anyone notice? No… most people don’t pay attention to such details.

It feels comfy enough, with plenty of room inside (no lipstick smears), and stayed where it belongs okay without a nose wire.

Downsides? It’s not reversible and it’s kind of boxy shaped, goes closer to my ears than other masks and I want to retrofit it with a nose wire but there is no seam on the top edge to sneak a hair pin wire in.

I’m going to try making a smaller version for the grandchildren. If I make more for myself with this pattern, I’m going to sew a pipe cleaner in during construction. I’ve slacked off on making masks to donate or sell, mainly because there are local mask makers cranking out masks by the hundreds in short time, some with obvious access to wholesale supplies. Even those who can walk into a fabric store are way ahead of me… I haven’t stepped foot into a Walmart or any other high traffic store since before the plaque. As for shopping online, I don’t even want to crank the math to see how deep I’m in the hole.

Still, what do I do? Order ye $40 in fabrics today… a fat quarter of candy corn print for Halloween masks, snowflakes and snowmen on red for Christmas, another red with tiny stars, and a couple yards of black, plus lace and trims, because I have ideas in my head and a few crystals in a jar.

I’ve been sewing other things… a fitted slipcover for a chair and a topper for this stool.

Yes, it is the same gold swirl cotton fabric that I used for masks, one of those online purchases with a min. order of 3 yards. I think it looks alright.

Thanks for reading!

Easy Nose Wire Hack

Who knew? Old lady hair pins with coated tips are ideal for adding a removable nose wire to fabric masks for the exact same reason the idea was rejected. They’re too thin to sew in… you can wiggle it out between the threads of your stitching.

Yes, just wiggle it in between the threads of the edge seam ye a couple inches down from the center of the top, slide it on up where you want it, and bend it as desired. What’s cool is those wiggles on the pin landed ye about where I usually bend and the top stitching works like a little casing to hold it in there until you are ready to wiggle it back out without breaking a thread.

I only tried the “thin” pins… there are usually two bundles of pins per package, with one bundle of pins being thinner than the other. You can find them in most any store that sells hair products. A pack of 100 only costs about a dollar.

This will work great on the lightweight reversible “Casual” and “Summer Masks” that I sewed without nose wires, mainly because both styles are shaped so a nose wire really isn’t needed but, some people still want a nose wire.

The denim/batik mask shown in photos is one I made for myself. Here’s the main photo again because I’m going to share this to my Facebook page and it always shows the last photo… yeah, gotta wiggle around all this tech stuff. Thanks for reading!

EDIT/UPDATE 8/19/2020: blew off paragraphs about opening an online store as turned that into an art store… seems anyone wanting a mask just contacts me directly, so no sense posting masks there. If you want to see what is currently available, visit my masks4sale page here on this blog. Thank you!

Fabulous Batiks (and real pipe cleaners)

I have to show & tell, even though they’re gone… maybe I should show the next batch here before posting on Facebook? Anyways, I had the pleasure of sewing masks from batik fabrics that a friend ordered from Amazon in a stack of fat eighths. Here are a few that were photographed before finishing with strap or ear loops.

The last photo shows how I improved my pattern to create a better casing to slide in elastic ear loops or a shoestring strap (not sewn in, so can switch up later, replace the elastic or whatever). All have a non-woven layer inside (featherweight Pellon) and a pipe cleaner nose wire. A real one… not the cheap kind that melt when ironed.

Hey, it has to feel good, too.

Here’s what I use… shown on top of Autumn Leaves fabric (with unbleached muslin lining) cut to make a pleated flat with a hidden pocket for my sister Jai up in Michigan.

If you want to see what Autumn Leaves looks like finished (or other masks available for purchase), here’s a link to the masks4sale page. Thanks for reading!

NOTE: the “Summer Batiks” currently available are NOT made exactly the same… they’re only 2 layers of fabric, reversible, with soft, sewn-in ear loops and optional (retrofitted) hairpin nose wires. (All of the 3-layer, non-reversible batik masks shown here are gone.)