Hi Sewing Friend!
I hope some of these ideas will be helpful. I have been trying out patterns for the last month. I bet you have tried a few, too! After trying about 12 patterns, these features are important to me. I show how to make a mask incorporating these in the slides.
- a reinforced channel on the sides for a one-string tie
- a longer wire channel across the top
- a channel down the center for a zip-tie boning
- a 2-layer, no-pocket, no-liner mask. I have used thin quilting fabric since Texas gets mighty warm.
The rest of this is a list of various resources that you might find helpful. Some are masks that I have tried, and there are links to various components.
Jesse Killion masks
Jesse Killion masks and how to alter them to fit
Fabric Patch has just put up another excellent video about changing the sizing of the JK masks. The woman cuts the patterns and tapes them back into shape according to more precise measurements. I tried this before I made the 23 sample masks. You can get a better fit making the samples, but maybe a more experienced seamstress would have had more success with cutting and taping.
Custom Sized Single layer mask
Don McCunn, a custom bra and clothing pattern maker in San Fransisco, has a wealth of information on his webpage. I tried making some with his pattern out of 600 thread count sheets, but found them hard to breath through and did not feel comfortable with just one layer of cotton.
What I kept from his design is the long wire along the top and the boning on the sides and down the center. I have used the copper wire he recommended for the top, but for the sides, I use a slightly stiffer zip tie. Also, the 8 inch copper wire works well with his mask pattern, but I have trimmed the excess off the wire once it is in place. I have not sewn the ends of the channel shut. The wire stays in place while wearing the mask just fine. The wire can be removed for washing or left in. I wash mine in the sink at night and hang it to dry. Mr. McCunn has a Forum on his webpage for people who are making his style mask and have questions. He was very responsive when I had questions.
The link below takes you to a page that explains his idea behind his mask design. At the bottom are some rectangles outlined in blue. One says Custom Face Mask e-Book with Patterns. This is free e-book: pages 9-10 show how to bend the copper wire to fit a typical face. There is also a list of materials he likes, including the copper wire that we are using that comes with 4 strands in white rubber casing. Three strands are further encased in black, red, and white rubber and the last is naked. We have found that leaving the rubber casing on works great. Somewhere in his e-book is a picture of what he recommends, including the packaging for the copper wire.
Batwing Mask demonstration and pattern
Here is a link to a Thai seamstress making a batwing mask. Below her video is an English transcription. It is fascinating to watch her create her pattern. I found her finished product just a little too close to my mouth.
This is the link to her patterns.
I have been using this fabric for one piece ties that fit nicely through the channels. This was Jory Blck’s suggestion. Jory has a collection of CP mask alterations, as well. Koshtex on Etsy sells the fabric below and it comes in black and white. I fold it in half and run the cutting blade parallel to the little lines that the fabric has. One inch cuts make a nice t-shirt string. The owner of Koshtex explained that not all knits will curl as clothing manufacturers do not like the curling. But these do.
Here is another link. Strapworks sells parachute cord and ball locks.
I found that ties get stuck in our hair. I wanted a cord lock that had 2 holes. The ones below have arrived, but I have discovered that the springs in the holes are so tight that they are a little hard to use. I put have the loose ends coming out of the top of the mask and attach the lock to those ends. When I run out of these, I might look for the single hole ball shaped cord lock. The spring is not so tight, but then you have to put a knot on the end so you don’t lose the lock. Rip Stop by the Roll got these to me very quickly, though! The double holed locks are good for 3 mm elastic or t-shirt ties.
This is a link to the ball style lock that I might order next. They are harder to find and get quickly. But the springs are easier to manuever. Be sure to measure the holes to make sure they are the size you are looking for.
I burn the ends of the zip ties slightly so that they are less sharp and prone to tear the bias tape.
Well, that is all! I wish you success in sewing.