make a face mask

St Meatball Mask is my version of an adjustable and washable face mask.  Why St. Meatball? Because St. Meatball Parmagiano‘s dad, Anthony, is the reason I created this version. He’s a pediatric nurse at UCSF and their unit, like many across the country, are low on PPE. Anthony’s boyfriend, Thomas, and I got right to planning, prototyping and sharing crazy selfies with the masks.

After a lot of youtube videos, blogs and feedback from Anthony’s co-workers, the final solution has the following features:

  • as good as fabric protection can get (2 layers of woven cotton with a layer of non woven fusible interfacing) while still being breathable and comfortable.
  • An option to add a filter, if available
  • washable – with removable metal nose clip
  • adjustable for a variety off adult face shapes
  • easy to reproduce to make multiples.

How to make:

  1. Print out the St Meatball Mask full bleed.  If your printer doesn’t have that setting, just make sure that it’s 100% (check the 1″ square) and add 1/4″ seam allowance to the sides. IMG_0684
  2. Cut out all of the pieces and iron the fusible interface to the wrong side of the exterior fabric.IMG_0686
  3. Sew together the top and bottom half of the interior pieces, leaving a 3″ gap to slide in a filter. IMG_0687
  4. Sew darts on the exterior and interior pieces.
  5. Press open.
  6. Flip interior piece over to the right side. Attached a 3″ piece of grosgrain ribbon, seam tape of trimmed fabric to top. I used a piece of ribbon with the ends ironed down. You could also use edge fray or other washable glue to fix the ends. Sew the long sides only. Leave the ends open to slide in a piece of wire. IMG_0693
  7. With right sides together, sew top and bottom only of exterior and interior pieces. The interior pieces should extend past both sides equally about 1 inch.IMG_0692
  8. Turn out to right sides and press. Marking the pattern folds, press the folds in place.  Note, the bottom fold does not extent the full mask width.  Fold sides of interior fabric over to hide ends.
  9. Cut ribbon ties or elastic (depending on stretch and thickness, about 7″) and tuck into edges at top and bottom.IMG_0698
  10. Sew 2 lines of both sides to hold ends and elastic in place.IMG_0695
  11. Cut 3-1/2: wire, floral wire, or pipe cleaner. Turn over ends about 1/4″ and tuck into pocket.IMG_0696
  12. Insert filter if available. I’ve seen a lot of posts of people cutting up HEPA vacuum cleaners and other materials to created additional barriers. IMG_0697
  13. Adjust to face as needed, pushing wire onto nose.IMG_0702



Download the St Meatball Mask template, make a face mask and donate to one of the many organizations that need it.


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