The CDC now recommends that everyone, whether you’re sick or not, wear a cloth face covering anytime they step outside their home.
Unfortunately, just like the run on toilet paper that has cleared grocery store shelves, people have already made a run on face masks online and there’s not much left to choose from.
But, that’s okay because it’s super easy to DIY a washable face mask! Don’t have a sewing machine? No problem. There are other options out there for you!
In fact, if you have a needle and thread, some cloth, and elastic, then you already have all you need to get started.
Let’s not waste any time and we’ll get right to it. Here are the exact materials that you’ll need for this project:
(1) 6 x 9 inch piece of fabric (Fabric #1)
(1) 7 x 9 inch piece of fabric (Fabric #2)
(2) 5 inch pieces of elastic (approximately 1/4 inch width thick)
sewing pins (not pictured)
Cut Fabric #2 (the 7 x 9 inch piece) lengthwise down the center. You should now have (2) 7 x 4.5 inch pieces of fabric.
On the lengthwise edge of one of the pieces of fabric, fold it over about .5 cm.
Thread a needle, and start hand-sewing it with a straight running stitch all the way to the other edge.
Don’t forget to begin and end the stitch by tying off some knots!
Do this on ONE long edge only. The other long edge should be left alone.
Repeat the same process on the 2nd 7 x 4.5 inch piece of fabric.
Place these two pieces aside.
Next, lay the 6 x 9 inch piece of fabric down on a flat surface.
Then lay down a strip of 5 inch elastic on top of the fabric.
The elastic should touch the top right corner, and extend at a diagonal as shown in the photo below.
Place one of the 4.5 x 9 inch pieces of fabric on top of the much larger Fabric #1 so that the top edges are flush together.
Make sure that it also covers the elastic as shown.
Grab the top right corner, making sure to pinch the elastic so it doesn’t move.
Poke the needle into both pieces of fabric, through the elastic, so that it is secured into place.
Repeat the process 2-3 more times, through the elastic, to makes sure it’s really secure!
Tie off a knot, and then sew another straight running stitch to the other edge.
Make sure to leave a little bit of room at the other end so that you can attach the 2nd piece of elastic (shown in next step).
Do not tie off a knot just yet!
Place the 2nd piece of elastic onto the top left corner as shown, again at a diagonal.
Finish sewing the elastic to the fabric, and tie off a knot.
Now it’s time to sew pieces together on the short edge, on both sides.
Look at where the finger is pointing for guidance.
Remember, you’re sewing the two short edges only!
Leave the remaining free long edge alone.
It should look like this when you’re done.
Easy, right? The good news is that you’re almost done!
Flip the main piece of fabric you’ve been working on upside down, so it looks like this.
Take the last 4.5 x 9 inch piece of fabric, and place it on top of the fabric as pictured.
Sew the short edge to the main piece of fabric. It’s the area between her two thumbs.
Just like you did before, leave a little bit of room at the end so you can secure the elastic.
Repeat the process on the other side.
Nex, sew together the long edge at the top, just like you did before.
Then slip your fingers through the center opening, and flip the mask inside out.
It should look like this.
The other side will look like this.
You can breathe a sigh of relief, because this is almost done.
Now it’s time to make the folds.
This is the first fold, which is approximately 1.2cm from the top.
Use pins to secure it into place.
Repeat the process two more times. It’s like folding a piece of paper into an accordion.
It should look like this when you’re done.
With the folds pinned into place, sew the short edge, on both sides.
Congratulations, you made your first mask!
These are great for giving to family, friends, and places like homeless shelters.
Please be aware that this mask is not acceptable for use in hospitals, which require N95 masks to defend against the coronavirus.
For that same reason, these masks are not guaranteed to protect you from catching COVID-19. But even the CDC admits that they’re better than nothing.
Check out the video below for a complete walkthrough of this easy face mask DIY.
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