And…we’re still here. At home, some alone - what’s a girl to do? Let me tell ya…she drags out her sewing machine and learns to make a homemade fabric face mask! With surgical masks in such short supply and the need to save the N-95 masks for our front-line medical workers and first responders as well as the CDC’s recommendation that fabric masks are a crisis response option, when other supplies have been exhausted, many people are opting to make their own as well as share with hospitals and our front line workers. In the last week, it’s been suggested that everyone wear a protective mask when we are out picking up supplies, so I decided I’d get online and find out how to make one myself and a few extras for family and friends. I purchased my nifty Project Runway sewing machine about 4 years ago, sadly, it’s never been out of the box, until now. TRUE STORY!
I grew up as a novice seamstress – never really graduated from that, even though both of my grandmothers were excellent seamstresses, and one even made extra money “taking in sewing from people” (Grannyism). I learned on my grandmothers circa 1950 Singer, complete with knee “pedal”. I loved that machine, I loved hanging out in her upstairs sewing room sitting on the floor by the sewing supply dresser and pulling out dozens of her sewing patterns and just dreaming of the things I wanted to make, but were probably out of my league. She was always so patient with me. I still own the dresser and it’s one of my most cherished antiques. I found this photo on-line - looks exactly like my grandmother Edith's. Those were good times!
On to the Maskapade!
I think anyone could do this and you don’t have to have a machine. Look below for instructions on how to make a quick no-sew mask, like the ones our friends at Heaven Hill Distillery are making for their employees nationwide. More on that in the next P3 blog article, until then you can check out our first interview on our new YouTube channel HERE.
If you have access to a sewing machine and are looking for easy instructions, I’ve got you covered – literally! See instructions below or visit our YouTube channel where we’ve placed the video I watched to learn how to sew my masks in the How To section HERE. I picked up a quilters pack at Walmart in KTG colors. You can also order supplies online through JoAnn Fabric. I got lots of great help watching their video which you can access via the link above. JoAnn's website offers a coupon and will let you order and pick up curbside if there is a location in your city. Find out more by visiting them HERE. (We do not get any type of reimbursement for these recommendations).
Here’s what you’ll need:
Fold fabric in half with right side facing (patterned sides) each other on the inside and sew along the top edge, leaving a 3” opening to convert it to right side out. If you are leaving an opening to slip in a HEPA filter, iron down ¼ inch on top and bottom and sew it down for a finished seam.
Turn the mask right side out (thru the opening). Press with a hot iron. Fold 3 evenly-spaced ½” pleats in the same direction, ironing down and pinning in place. Carefully sew down in the direction of the pleats (top to bottom) to secure, removing the pins just before you get to them.
How to make a quick bandana mask
I hope you have enjoyed this fun #kyadventuresfromhome tutorial on how to create your very own fabric mask. Whether you have mad sewing machine skills or are more of a bandana bandit, either way, I hope that you are faring well under these challenging times. Love to all - stay safe, stay home, and most of all - stay positive! Finally, I'll leave you with this quote from Havelock Ellis, "All the art of living lies in a fine mingling of letting go and holding on." Hang in there ya'll - we will get through this together!
Pamela Denny is the Executive Director of Kentucky Travel Guide. She also hosts the Facebook Group - The Positivity Principle, is a proud mom of three, author, speaker, green living coach, lover of all things compassionate and advocates for #loveforward living and in all circumstances, finding that silver lining. You can email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.