Instructions For Four Layered Face Mask

Materials needed:

  • 2 pieces of tightly woven cotton fabric measuring 8” X 14” preferably different colors
  • 2 strips of fabric measuring 2 1/2″ X 6”
  • 2 pieces of 1/4” elastic for upper part measuring 12” OR four fabric ties measuring 18” each
  • Pins
  • Scissors 
  • Threaded sewing machine 

Step 1

  • Cut two pieces of fabric ready measuring 8” X 14”
  • Cut two strips of fabric measuring 2 1/2” X 6” 
  • Cut two pieces of elastic measuring 12”

Step 2

Fold both 8” X 14” fabrics halfway, having the wrong side showing

Step 3

Overlap both fabric and pin them together and stitch a straight line (1/4” seam allowance) 

Step 4

Flip the pocket inside out, separate two pockets and iron it flat like in the pictures below.

Step 5

Now, you need to fold the fabric, put it together overlapping each other.

Step 6 

Stitch a straight line, sewing all four layers together (1/4” seam allowance) 

Now, your mask pocket should look like this,

Step 7

Make 3 pleats.  The total width of the mask after pleating should be 3 1/2”. Leave 1” at each end and made three equal pleats in the middle

Step 8

Now, place the rough ends on both edges of the strips on the front side of the mask and stitch a straight line, leaving 1/2” as seam allowance.

Step 9

Stitch a straight line on both edges like in the picture below. Remember, the width should be 3 1/2” as it has to fit with the width of the pleated mask. 

Step 10

Put the side piece you just prepared over the inside part of the mask and sew a straight line (1/2” seam allowance). 

Step 11

Flip the mask facing the front part, fold 1/4” first and 1/2” again and stitch a straight line to make a tube for the elastic like in the pictures below.

Now, your mask should look like this from the inside view.

Step 12

Put the elastic through the tube and tie a tight knot on both sides.

NOTE: If you are out of elastic or prefer not to use it, you can use fabric ties in this step. Attach each tie to one of the four corners. Fabric ties should not have any raw edges and should be 18″ in length each when finished.

Step 13

Stitch 5 stitches (back & forth) by machine or by hand over both knots to secure it nicely.

(This step is very important because the elastic knots often slip away no matter how tight your knot might be, the user may not be able to fix it at the scene, we may be wasting a mask just by ignoring this one step)


Step 14

Pull and hide the knot inside the tube just like shown in the picture below.

Now, your mask is ready!

Instructions authored by Basana Chhetri for the Arkansas Arts & Fashion Forum