Learn How to Easily Sew a Custom made Surgical Face Mask With Ties, Flexible Nose Piece, and Filter Pocket With This Step-By-Step Tutorial
Currently, the supply of surgical masks is at a critical all-time low throughout the entire nation. For those of us who sew, we can band together and make a huge difference in this time of need!
In times of emergency when all compliant supplies have been exhausted, the CDC allows fabric masks to be used. You can read more from the CDC on this subject here.
In this tutorial, we will be sewing a standard face mask with bias tape ties, a filter pocket, and a flexible nose piece. Kimberly Coffin also wrote on the tutorial for Surgical Face Mask with Elastic Ears here.
Homemade face masks can be donated to be used in hospitals, doctors’ offices, and retirement homes. Police officers, EMT’s, firefighters can also use facemasks during this time. This relieves the strain of a mask shortage and allows N95 masks to be used for COVID-19 and critical situations requiring PPE.
In extreme cases, nurses, doctors, and healthcare workers are wearing a fabric face mask over an N95 mask to give it even more longevity since the fabric face mask can easily be removed and washed once soiled.
How to Sew a Bias Tape Surgical Face Mask with Flexible Nose
While wearing a homemade face mask will not prevent someone from catching Covid-19, it can decrease the spread of large particles when someone who is infected sneezes or coughs.
Health.Harvard.Edu states “If you have respiratory symptoms like coughing or sneezing, experts recommend wearing a mask to protect others. This may help contain droplets containing any type of virus, including the flu, and protect anyone within three to six feet of the infected person.”
All face masks should be washed and sterilized before use and cleaned again after becoming damp or moist. Color-safe bleach like Clorox 2 or Purex 2 can be used to sanitize with hot water.
Now that we’ve covered all of the info on face masks it’s time to get sewing!!!
Begin by cutting your fabric using the chart below for the correct measurements.
Supply List For Your Surgical Mask With Flexible Nose:
100% Quilting Cotton Fat Quarters
Self- Healing Cutting Mat
Floral Wire on Amazon
1/2″ Double Fold Bias Tape
New to Sewing? Check out my Beginner Seamstress Supply List on Amazon here!
Cutting Chart for your Surgical Mask with Flexible Nose
Adult: 9″ x 7″ Child: 7″ x 5″
Cut 2 pieces of Double Fold 1/2″ Bias Tape 40″
Floral Wire 6″
Learn how to make Bias Tape in the video below.
Step 1. Pin Fabric
Place two pieces of fabric right sides together. Save the third piece for the end of step 2.
Place a pin in each corner of the rectangle and horizontally mark the center of the rectangle.
Step 2. Sew Filter Pocket
Halfway down from the top of the fabric sew a straight horizontal line 2-3″ long. Repeat this on the opposite side as well, leaving the middle unsewn. Refer to the photo below as a guide.
Pinch both corners of the top fabric and pull them downwards to meet the bottom. Do the same on the back fabric.
A filter can easily be slid into this pocket at the end of the tutorial.
Place the last rectangle on top of the lining with right sides facing each other. Sew the short sides of the face mask making sure to backstitch at the beginning and end of each seam using a 3/8ths inch seam allowance.
Step 3. Turn Fabric
Turn the mask right side out and use an iron to press it flat. Take care to roll the seams outwards.
Step 4. Create Pin Tuck Markings
Create three pintuck markings by folding the mask in half and pressing it with an iron and then folding the outside edges to the center and pressing again.
Step 5. Sew Bias Tape.
Open the ends of the bias tape and fold them backwards so the right sides are touching each other. Sew a straight line along the short end of the bias tape making sure to backstitch. Turn the corner right side out to create a clean finish.
Find the center of the bias tape and position it at the center of the mask. Open the bias tape to align the raw edge of the bias tape with the raw edges of the mask. Pin in place along the length of the mask. Sew the bias tape in place along the crease closest to the raw edge, repeating this on the opposite side.
The filter slot should be facing away from you, this will be located on the backside of the mask.
*OPTIONAL Cut a 5-6 inch piece of floral wire to create a flexible nose piece. Bend the ends of the wire inwards to prevent them from poking through the fabric. Slid the wire into the bias tape along the top middle of the mask. Pin on either side of the floral tape and push it upwards to avoid sewing over it.
Fold the bias tape upwards and encase the raw edge, pin in place and sew along the entire length of the bias tape 1/4th of an inch from the edge.
You can use your fingers on either side to guide the bias tape as you sew it.
Step 6. Create Pin Tucks for your Surgical Mask with Flexible Nose
Create 1/2” folds facing downwards. Pin the folds in place making sure all tucks are facing the same direction.
Step 7. Topstitch your Surgical Mask with Flexible Nose
Sew over the pintucks along the right and left edge of the entire mask using a 3/8ths inch seam allowance.
Please contact your local hospital for their specific needs before donating!
Written by Kimberly Coffin