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Sewing your own face mask? Vacuum cleaner bag, dish towel or shirt may be useful

08:06 | 04/04/2020

Without any available pieces of fabric, you are still able to sew a face mask by yourself with some daily items available in your house including Vacuum cleaner bag, dish towel or shirt. Here are the guides:

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You want to make sure you’re using a washable, cloth vacuum cleaner bag with a high filtration value. You’ll want to check for a HEPA label, which means the bag’s material traps 99.97% of dust and pollen. The WHO reminds us that homemade masks are only effective when used in combination with frequent and proper hand-washing, and we remind you to go scrub your paws now.

How to make a face mask with a vacuum cleaner bag

• Step 1: Cut the corners of the vacuum bag to flatten its surface

sewing your own face mask vacuum cleaner bag dish towel or shirt may be useful
(Image credit: Future)

• Step 2: Line up stencil so the top border aligns with the vacuum bag’s edge. Trace stencil with pencil or marker onto the vacuum bag.

sewing your own face mask vacuum cleaner bag dish towel or shirt may be useful
(Image credit: Future)

• Step 3: Cut out the mask and open up the fold.

sewing your own face mask vacuum cleaner bag dish towel or shirt may be useful
(Image credit: Future)

• Step 4: Pull up the top layer from the bottom half up the mask and fold it over the top half. Bend pipe cleaner in half and apply hot glue to one side. Attach the pipe cleaner to the bottom edge of the mask.

sewing your own face mask vacuum cleaner bag dish towel or shirt may be useful
(Image credit: Future)

• Step 5: Return the folded top layer to the bottom half of the mask. Stitch the along the top and bottom edges of the mask to join the layers.

sewing your own face mask vacuum cleaner bag dish towel or shirt may be useful
(Image credit: Future)

• Step 6: Cut the 11-inch elastic strip in half. Stitch the ends of the elastic strips to the corners of the mask, with one piece for the top and one piece for the bottom.

sewing your own face mask vacuum cleaner bag dish towel or shirt may be useful
(Image credit: Future)

• Step 7: Fold the mask in half and make sure the top and bottom halves align. Stitch along the sides of the mask to finish.

sewing your own face mask vacuum cleaner bag dish towel or shirt may be useful
(Image credit: Future)

How to make a face mask with a dish towel

WHAT YOU'LL NEED

• Needle and thread

• Scissors

• 20 x 20 inches of 100% cotton fabric, like a dish towel (pre-washed)

• 4 elastic strings at least four inches long (pre-washed)

While it’s helpful to have a sewing machine to make this dish towel face mask, you can also easily hand-sew it. Start by finding some tightly-woven cotton fabric. Research shows it’s better to use 100% cotton versus a cotton-polyester blend. A dish towel ranks third under a surgical mask and a vacuum cleaner bag as the most effective against particles.

You’ll also need elastic strings, which you can take off of various common household items. Try bra straps, bathing suit straps, hair ties or thick rubber bands. Then, download and print this template provided by The New York Times, which created the instructions below.

• Step 1: Cut out four pieces of fabric using the template.

sewing your own face mask vacuum cleaner bag dish towel or shirt may be useful
(Image credit: Future)

• Step 2: Take two pieces and sew the curved sides together to create the front side of the mask. Repeat with the other two pieces for the back side of the mask.

sewing your own face mask vacuum cleaner bag dish towel or shirt may be useful
(Image credit: Future)

• Step 3: Place one side of the mask on a table, seam-side down. Lay the four elastic strings on the corners, leaving the ends peeking a little over the cloth edge. Sew the ribbons in place.

sewing your own face mask vacuum cleaner bag dish towel or shirt may be useful
(Image credit: Future)

• Step 4: Pull all four ribbons over to the right side. Lay the other side of the mask on top, seam-side up, to sandwich the ribbons.

sewing your own face mask vacuum cleaner bag dish towel or shirt may be useful
(Image credit: Future)

• Step 5: Sew the top, left and bottom sides of the mask. Leave the right side (where the ribbons are) unsewn.

sewing your own face mask vacuum cleaner bag dish towel or shirt may be useful
(Image credit: Future)

• Step 6: Turn the mask inside out by pulling the ribbons through the hole on the right side. Now, sew the right side to close the hole.

sewing your own face mask vacuum cleaner bag dish towel or shirt may be useful
(Image credit: Future)

• Step 7: Tie the elastic strings together to fit over your ears. Adjust as necessary.

How to make a no-sew face mask with a T-shirt

WHAT YOU'LL NEED

• Scissors

• T-shirt (pre-washed)

• Two elastic loops (pre-washed)

T-shirts rank just under dish towels in effectiveness against particles. Both a cotton blend T-shirt or 100% cotton T-shirt will work in these two methods. As far as elastic strings go, the first method uses two loops, which could be hair ties or thick rubber bands.

The first method comes from the Japanese Creations blog. They use a handkerchief but not that many have one of those lying around, which is why we’ve adapted it to a T-shirt. Here’s how to make a no-sew pleated face mask:

• Step 1: Cut out an 18x18 square of fabric from the T-shirt and lay it down.

sewing your own face mask vacuum cleaner bag dish towel or shirt may be useful
(Image credit: Future)

• Step 2: Fold the top to the center. Fold the bottom to the center. Then, flip it over.

sewing your own face mask vacuum cleaner bag dish towel or shirt may be useful
(Image credit: Future)

• Step 3: Fold the top to the center again. Fold the bottom to the center. Then, flip it over.

sewing your own face mask vacuum cleaner bag dish towel or shirt may be useful
(Image credit: Future)

• Step 4: Put an elastic loop through each end. Fold the sides over.

sewing your own face mask vacuum cleaner bag dish towel or shirt may be useful
(Image credit: Future)

• Step 5: Place the folded side over your face. Put loops over your ears.

sewing your own face mask vacuum cleaner bag dish towel or shirt may be useful
(Image credit: Future)

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