How To Make a Mask

Wearing a mask that covers the mouth and nose is recommended as a way to help prevent the transmission of a virus. In this how-to video, Floral Design Instructor Marisa demonstrates how to create a mask that is stylish and easy to wear. Please do your part in “crushing-the-curve” by staying home. But, when you must go outside, remember to wear your mask. Enjoy!

Video Transcription 

Hi there. I'm Marisa, one of the instructors here at the Floral Design Institute. Some of you have probably seen these masks that I've been making here, and today I'm going to show you how. 

For the materials we are going to use some fabric, and then I picked felt, I'll get into this later. It's going to be for a liner, but we'll get into that later. A t-shirt, some scissors, your sewing machine and an iron. 

With the materials that I have chosen to work with, I am going to disclaim that everything that I am using is based off my opinion and what I feel is most safe for me. For the fabric, I chose something with a higher thread count or just something that's just thicker. Then for the liner or filter inside, I actually chose felt. The reason why I chose felt was that it just doesn't absorb moisture quickly. And then a T shirt or maybe a shoestring or a piece of ribbon, just something that you can use for a tie. 

Now, let's prep our materials. I've already precut my fabric, but what you're going to want to do is you're going to want to cut two pieces in a rectangle, and I did about 10 inches across and about seven inches in height. You don't have to use those actual dimensions. This just for me just fits my face the way that I wanted, so it actually covers more. You can go smaller or taller. And also with the height once we pull the drawstrings down, it cups your face. So I just like this dimension. 

Then with the liner inside, I did about seven inches in length and then four inches in height. And then for our t-shirt, again you don't have to use a t-shirt, you can use a shoestring or a ribbon or whatever you have that you can use to tie. I have my old t-shirt, I'm actually not going to cut this up because this is, yes it is quite old, but it has the Fibonacci or golden ratio on it and I just can't cut it. But you're going to want to use this or again, whatever you have on hand. 

But when you do cut the t-shirt, you want to cut actually this way instead of going this way. The reason why is that it's actually more stretchy going this way and you'll just get more out of your t-shirt. So for this one, I honestly didn't measure this. I just kind of guessed just around my head what would actually tie, but you can see the buoyancy in it and it really stretches. So let's get started. 

Now that we have all of our pieces cut, we have to determine what is the front and the back, right? So we have two rectangle pieces. I picked this one to be the front because the pattern is so pretty and the flowers on the front. Okay, so with the back piece, we're actually going to turn it over face down, and then we're going to place our filter or liner inside, directly in the middle. And what this is actually going to do, it's just going to keep it inside hidden. So we don't see this on the outside.

And then what helps too is sometimes, especially this fabric, it has some creases and folds in it. If you take your iron and just iron on just getting all those folds and creases out on both, it just helps keeping the sewing just easier, and it keeps the fabric from bunching when you're sewing. 

Then we're going to turn this back over. We're going to start sewing. So you're going to start with this one, and what you're going to do is just, so all the way around here following the rectangle. So let's sew this together. 

Okay, so now we have our liner and/or filter sewed on this side, not this side. If you did it, it's okay. I did it too and I just went with it. So then we have our front side. So don't forget to, to just snip up all the extra strings, extra pieces of thread, just want to make it look nice and pretty, just like our mechanics in floral design. Okay, so now we're going to sew these together. 

So make sure, I have to think about this for a second because let's see. Okay, so we want to actually do it backwards on the outside. So just basically take your patterns facing each other like this. I always actually turn this upside down knowing that the liner is, or the filter is facing me, so I know I'm sewing it correctly. We're going to go ahead and line it up and all you're going to do is, so from here then to here, let's get sewing. 

We have sewn our left side and the right side. Remember to go back in and snip off all your extra pieces of thread just to make it nice and tidy. All right, so now what we're going to do is we're going to flip this out so we get it right side up, okay? It doesn't matter what side we work with right now. It's fine because we're going to add the ties. And then also you may want to use your iron on this part. I find this is very, very, very helpful. 

Okay, so with your ties, I have the ties that I made out of the t-shirt. Again, you could use shoestring ribbon, whatever. What we're going to do is we're going to just feed these through on the inside, one on the right side and then one on the left side. Then you want to pull these ties as close as you can, all the way to the seams. This is where it gets really tricky. I'm going to move this to the side because it's kind of hot. I can feel it. All right, again, this is where it gets tricky. So now what you're going to have to do is you have to fold these inside like this. Can you see that sort of creating a nice fold inside and make sure that your ties, you have to adjust and pull your ties on each side, and this is why we're going to use the iron. 

So you want to line these up, line up your folds really, really nicely, and then just kind of press down so it creases and then you're going to take your iron and then iron across. And this helps really press it down for when you're sewing. So I'm sure if you are a sewer, sewig fabric that's really bubbly, it's really hard. Ooh, that's quite steamy. And then you're going to switch it around and do the same thing on the other side. 

Can you believe it? We're almost done. However, this part, besides the one before it, I find this one is even a little bit harder, but you'll get it. So we have ironed both sides, okay? Now what we're going to do is we just have to sew completely all the way around, all in one stitch. The challenge is I typically start on the left side of the sewing machine, putting my foot down. I always put my foot down, but so we're going to put our foot down on her sewing machine, but you want make sure the string is not underneath the foot. We do not want to sew the string within the mask. So I leave, I don't know, maybe about an inch or so, just enough space in here so we don't sew the string in. 

So I go ahead and I put the foot down and I start sewing through. I also as I sew just a little bit at a time, and then I pull the string and move it and scooch it over to the same, making sure it's all the way over to the side. 

So then I sew a little bit, adjust, sew, and pull in and out, making sure it doesn't get caught. Yes, I've done that already. And I'm sure you all know when you have to take out your ripper and you have to start over or you're just like, “ahh." So then you sew all the way down, and then you're just going to turn and then you are going to sew this way and that's going to stitch these two pieces together, right? 

So then you're going to sew down this way, turn, sewing back up this way, making sure this part doesn't get caught again, doing the same thing you did on this side over here. Go ahead and sewing all the way up, adjusting a little bit, turning, sewing again all the way down this way and then we're done. 

Wasn't that easy? Not very many steps. Look how cute this looks. Okay, so how do we put this on? So what I do really just determining what is the top and the bottom. It all really looks the same. I take my strings and I just tie a shoestring bow or knot, whatever you want to call it, at the bottom really tightly. The reason why I do this is so also you know which is the bottom, and if you're going to throw this into the washing machine, you may actually want to tie the top two. You probably should, but leaving this on keeps the strings from pulling all the way through. 

So I'm actually going to take off my glasses. Unfortunately these don't, these masks that we're making here aren't fog-free for our glasses unfortunately, but it's okay. So I'm going to go ahead and put this over my face and since these are a drawstring, these actually adjust your face. That's why I like using strings opposed to elastic around the ears. Also, I have very, very, very tiny, tiny ears and they don't really hold anyway. So, okay, let me get my ponytail out of the way. So then you just pull and then tie it on top. 

I hope you found this easy to follow and helpful. You can see I have different sizes. This one is probably the largest. You can also get quite creative. As all of you have seen, I added the tulip for the Floral Design Institute. 

This one I made from my friend Shannon, she's actually a nurse, so I do want to say thank you to her for all that she's doing right now. You can also try buttons, different types of fabric, even contrasting threads will look pretty cool. 

And once you get this pattern down, I'm telling you it's going to be quite addicting. I made like 12 in a day last Saturday. It actually starts to get really fun. So stay healthy, stay safe, and thank you for watching.