Masking my bigs and my littles.

I sewed face masks again for my family again. Whatever your opinions are on masks (wearing or not wearing them is a pretty intense debate lately), they are required in many aspects of daily life right now and my kids will be required to wear them when they return to school. We’ve never had to worry about this before 2020 and it a surreal part of our current reality! As a part of my effort to write weekly about projects large or small, here is the way I found a pattern and tutorial to make face masks that fit my whole family COMFORTABLY when it is required! Gardening is coming soon, but in the meantime, read on!

I buy crafts and yarn from Joann fabrics all the time and have a whole bin of leftover fabric for various projects, many unfinished, some not even started! At the tail end of my crocheting kick, I purchased some extra yarn for future projects and while I was browsing pearler beads (yes, I have crafting ADD), I found that elastic was on sale AND in stock! So I bought 15 YARDS to have on hand. I also went though a zipper pouch phase – more to come on that soon – and purchased a few quilting stacks of star wars fabric as well as some other funky prints for zippered storage around my house – this fabric could now be used here as well!

Now that I had my supplies, I began looking for tutorials and patterns. I am a notorious “winging it” sewer and have very rarely been successful sewing anything but straight lined pillow cases or cushions. My clothing endeavors have been ill fitting or a basic disaster (cue my tulle skirt debacle and there are a few unseen crappy kids pants too). These masks need to be practical and usable to be safe and in any way effective. I wanted to put some time into them and patterns are intimidating! My husband works in construction and is required to wear one daily, so he needed on that fit his face and he was having trouble finding one big enough – conversely, on my children the ones I made originally were loose and kept falling down – so I kept this in mind as I looked. I decided on the curved style of mask for two reasons – 1. it seemed to use less elastic and with it being so unavailable lately I felt like that was a good idea, 2. the style seemed to pull less on ears and stay cozy over the nose – which for kids is a welcomed comfort!

Pinterest yielded some great options and I landed HERE. One of the biggest issues I have with the accordion style of mask is that it is difficult to find a great child’s fit quickly or make it adjustable and stable. This one was the tutorial I had been looking for, the curved design with FOUR distinct sizes –

Men
Women/Teenagers
Kids (7-12)
Kids (3-6)

This is crucial since my face is larger than my daughter’s but not nearly as big as my husband’s! (There is a joke here, I am sure of it – but we continue on). With easy to print and cut patterns for the 2 piece mask, I watched the video tutorial and paused it as I built my own masks. The link above also has great step by step instructions in pictures if that works better for you including some top stitching as well. This link also included a nose piece pocket for bendable metal, and I just skipped ahead of those parts as I wasn’t planning using it. It also seemed easy enough leave a space in the mask for additional filtration if that floats your boat and / or is needed.

There you go, this is another little project I spent time on this past month, and it turned out well enough to use (unlike many of my other clothing sewing projects)! As you can see from above, Doug’s mask doesn’t fit my dainty face, but it fits him very well! Everett’s is perfect size for him and Wyatt’s is a little bit smaller to accommodate the slight difference. Let me know if you need help with patterned masks!

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