May 2, 2020

Mask Tutorial...

Brynwood Needleworks - Mask Tutorial

I was asked for my pattern for making masks. While I didn't have a pattern, per se, I have put together information from my live video on Facebook and other makers who've shared their expertise.

Mainly, I'm sharing measurements, my production sewing process, and how the fabrics come together to make these masks. If you're on Facebook, please check out my Brynwood Needleworks page, where I did the live tutorial last week.

I originally cut one 7" x 19" piece for each mask, that was folded in half, sewn, with the rest of the steps to create one mask at a time. I've since improved that part of the process, too, so that my sewing creates 5-6 masks each time. So, let's get started, shall we?


You'll need:

• 2 different fabrics for mask part, cut 9" wide by the width of the fabric (40-41") - This will make 5-6 masks when done
• fabric for straps, need 2 - 2" wide x 36" long for each mask

Brynwood Needleworks - Covid-19 Mask Tutorial 1

The first thing you'll do is place two strips of fabric for masks, right-sides-together and sew them together along the length on top and bottom.

Turn fabrics right-side-out and finger press along seams.

Fig. 1 - Top stitch along the top and bottom seams

Fig. 2 - If you're production sewing, when you finish one strip of sewn fabrics, add the next set of strips under the needle and topstitch the next set, for as many sets as you'll be making. Sew all the topstitching on one side, and then separate all the strip sets, turn and sew all the topstitching on the other side.

Fig. 3 - Showing the topstitch line on long sides of fabric. Both sides are done on these sets.

Fig. 4 - Lay sewn and topstitched strips on cutting table. I stack my strips to cut more than one set at a time. (I have two sets on each pile...4 mask strips total)

Brynwood Needleworks - Covid-19 Mask Tutorial 2

 Fig. 5 - Lay a ruler on top of the strip sets, and cut each mask piece at the 7" width mark. These mask pieces will measure 7" wide by 8.5" long, with the topstitching at the top and bottom, and the sides open. Continue cutting down the full length of the sewn strips.

Fig. 6 - Fold from the top down on each mask piece. I can do this without a template or ruler, because I've made so many, but you'll want to measure approx. 7/8" from the top of the mask and fold it under toward the top of the mask as shown in Fig. 7. I try to line the back fold up with the topstitching on the top of the mask. You can see that I use little clips to hold my folds as I go.

Fig. 8 - Repeat for the second fold, matching the back side of the second fold with the bottom of the first fold. I move the first clips down to hold both the first and second folds, so I'm only using two clips so far, instead of four.

Brynwood Needleworks - Covid-19 Mask Tutorial 3

Fig. 9 - Fold last section of mask, matching the back of the last fold with the bottom of the previous fold. The bottom fold is not as deep as the other two. Again, hold the fold securely with another set of binder clips.

Fig. 10 - This picture shows you roughly how the sections will measure when you've finished folding, and how I hold the folds with the clips. Don't worry if it's not exact. I like to press all my folded mask sections at once, before I prepare the strap sets. That helps hold them when I remove the clips to sew the mask parts together.

Fig. 11 - Strip sets for straps. If you cut the fabric for strips parallel to the selvage (with your fabric folded as it comes off the bolt), you'll have two strap pieces each time you cut a strip. Then, I take each set of strips, fold them in half and press, so you can see the fold.

(I've changed to a lavender mask set for the balance of the tutorial. Sorry for any confusion.)

Fig. 12 - I use an air dry fabric marker to mark the fold on the right side of the fabric. You'll see why in a later step.

Brynwood Needleworks - Covid-19 Mask Tutorial 4
Fig. 13 - Take the 2" strap strip and fold each long edge toward the center of the strip. I finger press it to hold it as I get started. 
Fig. 14 - Take that folded strip and fold it again to encase the raw edges.
Fig. 15 - Place the folded part of the strip under the needle and begin sewing, backstitching at the start (and end). It's easy to fold the strip as you sew. If you pull the strip toward you a bit, it almost folds itself! Sew down one side of the strip until you get 3-4" before the mark you placed on the fold.

Fig. 16 - Line the first fold to the mark on the strap section, and slide the mask into the folded edge. Continue sewing across the face part of the mask, making sure you sew it into the fold.

Fig. 17 - Continue sewing down the strip, backstitching at the end of the strap. When you get to the end, prepare the strap for the next mask, as you did in Fig. 13, and just keep assembling masks until you have one side done on all your masks.

Then, you'll cut your straps apart, turn you masks, and follow the same process on the other side of the mask until all the straps on the other side are complete. You'll want to stop about 5" from the fold on this side, because you'll have to slip the bottom edge of the first fold on the mark because you're going the opposite way. Even if you only do one mask set, you'll have at least five new masks. (You'll cut 5 - 2" wide x 36" long strip sets for each mask.)
That's it!

I think I covered everything, but if you have any questions, please ask them in the comments section. I'll answer your questions there, too, so everyone can see the replies. I'll warn you, making these is like eating potato chips. No one can make just one (and this process makes it really easy to make more)!


  1. WOW Donna Dear you really have the mask process down. Thank you for sharing your tutorial. Making multiples is always easier than one at a time. Your masks are lovely.

  2. Thank you for a great tutorial Donna - I'll link to it on my blog on Monday so others can perhaps use it as well. I finished my latest lot yesterday and am hopeful that will be the end, at least for awhile.


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Blessings, Donna