Follow this tutorial to learn how to sew a face mask with filter pocket, wire and replaceable ties or elastic.
Disclaimer: Fabric face masks DO NOT replace surgical masks, they should be used only in case of emergency when supplies are limited or non- existent. Such as during this Covid-19 crisis. These masks should always be used with an effective filter inserted. Such as HEPA filters or any PM2.5 filter. Change filters DAILY for optimal use and wash the face mask DAILY in hot water with laundry detergent. Cloth masks are not considered personal protective equipment, they are less effective then surgical masks (but better than nothing) and are not approved by any health organizations that I know of. This post contains affiliate links at no cost to you. I appreciate the support!
Follow this full YouYube tutorial for an easier understanding of how to sew a face mask with filter pocket:
Face Mask Materials:
FABRIC: (PREWASHED 100% lightweight cotton woven fabric recommended)
- 15″ by 7.5″ STANDARD
- 15″ by 9″ LARGE
- 9 1/2″ by 2 1/4″ BINDING
- 3 1/2″ piece of wire (recommended 20 gauge wire but alternatives can be used, such as pipe cleaners, paperclips, floral wire, jewelry wire, twist ties)
- If using elastic: cut two 8.5″, no more than 3/8″ in width.
- If using ties: use two 40″ length ties (these can be made from shoelaces, cord, cut up T-shirts or leggings.
How to Sew a Face Mask with Filter Pocket
The finished face mask with filter pocket measurements are approx
7.5″ by 3.5″for a standard size and 9″ by 3.5″ for a large size.
Please Note: I only used red thread so you could see the stitches. I suggest using a matching thread to make things look more professional.
Serge or zigzag the short edges of the main piece of fabric. (this step can be skipped if preferred).
Fold the main piece of fabric in half so both surged edges meet. Make sure the right side of the fabric is facing in.
Then sew a 1/2″ seam allowance along the serged edge 1 1/2″ in from each end (2″ for a large).
This opening will become the Filter Pocket.
Press this seam open and then turn the fabric right side out.
Topstitch along ONE side of the seam at 1/4″.
Then measure 1/2″ from the seam that is without topstiching, fold and iron the mask leaving this 1/2″ at the top.
Find the center and mark a 3 1/2″ section. This is for the wire you will insert Then stitch over these marked lines.
Take your 3 1/2″ wire and curl the ends in to hide the sharp edges.
Next, Slip it into the casing and clip or pin it as close to the top of the fold as possible.
Topstitch at 1/4″ around the entire square making sure to avoid sewing over the wire.
Lay the square face up with the inserted wire at the top. Then make three folds, evenly spaced. Tucking the fabric under so the opening to the folds face down (I eyeball this part).
Then, pin these edges in place, iron the folds and sew a topstitch along both edges at 1/4″.
Take the 9 1/2″ by 2 1/4″ binding, fold both edges in at 1/2″ each side and iron.
Cut the binding in half creating two strips.
Take one piece of the two bindings, open one flap and line it up along the side of the mask (front of the mask facing up). There should be around 1/2″ overlap on the top and bottom edges. Fold these over to the back of the mask and clip in place.
Sew along this edge at a 1/2 ” seam allowance.
Do this with the second piece of binding on the other side of the mask as well.
Pull the binding out and lay both edges flat. Sew along these edges, this helps later when replacing the ties or elastic as they won’t get caught in these folds. (Some people may skip this step but I think it is very important to the end product).
Fold the binding over to the back side of the mask, pin and stitch this, leaving an opening on the top and bottom of the binding for the ties to go through.
And lastly pull your elastic or ties through the two loops you created with the binding.
An easy way to do this is by using a safety pin attached to one end of the elastic or tie, this helps pull the tie through the loop quickly.
And that is how to sew a face mask with a filter pocket and replaceable ties!
Below you can see the difference between standard size and large size. The blue and white ones are standard size, the grey one is the large size.
I hope this face mask tutorial was helpful, PLEASE leave me any comments on variations or other helpful tips or ideas you may have to help others as they make their own facemasks.
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Feel free to check out my other sewing tutorials to find more projects to keep yourself busy during our self quarantined time.
And I hope you are well and feeling God’s peace during this uncertain time.