protective mask being made in Philadlephia

Masks and Respirators are the first priority of CoverAid PHL, an open community dedicated to coordinating supply chains and innovations to support personal protective equipment needs of professional health care in the Philadelphia region during the Coronavirus pandemic.

Preparing to Sew Masks for CoverAid PHL

Sewing instructions are on the CoverAidPHL website.

Hit this link for video instructions.

CoverAid PHL is an open community dedicated to coordinating supply chains and innovations to support personal protective equipment needs of professional health care in the Philadelphia region during the Coronavirus pandemic. Masks and Respirators are their (our) first priority

On the left is shown the mask. When I questioned this mask, Dr. Evan Malone, President of NexFab and one of the founding organizers of CoverAid PHL replied: samples of the mask shown at left have been accepted by 3 healthcare organizations and they are wanting thousands of these. 

This post presents how to prepare to sew the masks. Visit the CoverAidPHL website for complete sewing instructions.

Wash and dry the masks on hot heat, press if needed

Have 3 yards 100% cotton for making the shell, still need the 3 yards of cotton jersey to arrive. Have the elastic, but it is 1/2 inch wide. Need to cut it to 1/4 inch wide. Buy 1/4 inch elastic, even if you wind up paying more. Cutting elastic in half is miserable and takes too long. When this post was published I was waiting for pipe cleaners to arrive for making the nose grips, inserted into the casement at the top of the masks.

Wash and dry fabric.

1. Washed and dried cotton shell fabric on hot temperature.

Iron fabric

2. Press fabric on hot heat. If wrinkles won’t come out put vinegar into the iron. It will smell, so half vinegar and half water may be better.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lay fabric on table

3. The sixty-inch wide fabric shown in this pic measures 3 yards. The fabric has been folded in half with selvages laid edge-to-edge. The folded fabric measures 60 inches wide by 1 1/2 yard long. This layout yields 49 shells per ply. The two plies give 98 shells. Note: Cotton knit shrinks. If buying 3 yards of cotton woven, buy 3 1/2 yards of cotton knit.

Pin the fabric

4. Pin the selvages edge-to-edge. Pin the torn edges edge-to-edge. Check that torn cross-grain edges lie edge-to-edge.

 

 

 

1 1/2 yard layout of 60 inch width

1 1/2 yard layout of 60 inch width yields 49 pieces

Lay the fabric out for cutting

Mark the shell’s width up the length of the fabric; repeat the procedure, marking the lengths across the width of the fabric to mark the cutting lines for all of the shell pieces
Preparing to mark the width.

5. Prepare to mark the width. Use a 4 foot straight-edge, if you have it, to mark the width. Extend the straight-edge with an L-square. Check that the width is accurate at both ends and the middle before marking. Once the width is correct, mark the cutting line across the width with a yellow pencil, or other light colored marking device.

 

This is a tight cut, with almost no waste.
A one and one-half yard length of sixty-inch wide fabric yields 7 widths.
Sixty-inch wide fabric yields 7 lengths.
Seven times seven yields 49 shell or lining pieces.
Two plies of fabric, each one and one-half yards  long by 60 inches wide, yields 98 shell or lining pieces.
The only waste is a 1/1/4 inch wide strip the length of the fabric. The strip can be sewn into approximately 4 ties, and then sewn to two masks instead of elastic.

Checking the width.

6. Check that the width is consistent across the entire width of the fabric before marking the fabric. Check that the width is accurate at both ends and the middle before marking. Once the width is correct, mark the cutting line across the width with a yellow pencil, or other light-colored marking device. Mark the widths  across the length of the fabric; repeat the procedure, marking the lengths across the width of the fabric, creating a checkered board of pieces to cut.

 

 

 

 

Washed elastic

7. Washed elastic

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cutting elastic.

8. Cut 14 inch lengths of elastic. Since this is 1/2 inch width elastic, it is then cut down the middle to produce 1/4 inch wide elastic. The pieces are then cut in half to give 7 inch lengths,

Bundled elastic

9. Elastic bundled into sets for sewing 8 masks at a time. The shell, lining, and pipe cleaners will be added before the sewing begins. 98 masks will be sewn from this cutting. There will be 10 bundles of supplies for 8 masks each, 2 bundles of supplies for 8 masks each.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bobbins wound and ready for sewing.

10. Bobbins wound and ready for sewing.

11. Machine oiled and threaded. Gauge on machine, stitch length tested.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

thread_ready

11. Additional spools of thread ready to be tied on and pulled through when thread empties on the current spool.

 

When the knit lining arrives will cut the cross-grain fold at the top of the top ply of marked shell fabric, then remove the top ply. After washing and drying the knit lining on hot heat, will fold the knit lining in half, then lay it over the bottom ply of the shell fabric. Finally will lay the  marked shell fabric on top and cut all four plies at once.

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Laurel@CFashionEdu.com
215 884 7065
© Laurel Hoffmann, 2020.

 

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