Introduction: A. B. Mask Modified With a Pocket

After making several of these, I was asked for a tutorial by several people. This mask was adapted from Jessica Nandino's awesome mask. You can go to her instructable to find the original pattern and directions. This page is dedicated to instructions for a modification that includes a pocket for disposable filters or other masks that need their life prolonged.

Sources that you should check out for filters such as vacuum cleaner bags or blue shop paper towels.

Step 1: The Fabric Pieces

It should be noted that I am working off of 42" wide fabric. With that said, you will need:

  • THREE layers cut using the original pattern.*** Look here to get started. I prefer that each pattern piece is a different color but it's up to you!**
  • TWO 1.5" wide strips of fabric measuring at least 40" long.
  • TWO 1.5" wide strips of fabric measuring at least 2.5" long.*
  • ONE 1" wide strip of fabric measuring at least 10" long.*

*If you are working in batches like I am, just cut one 1"x 42" strip (which I can use on about four masks) and another 1.5"x 42" that I can use on about 8 masks INSTEAD of cutting out the above specified lengths individually for the last two bullets. You can cut them down to size later as you go along. It saves time!

If you need to increase length on your strips, Jessica Nandino explains how.

***Due to printer issues, I also had to recreate the original pattern as I could not print it to size. When I did, I made the seam allowance a 1/4" instead of the 1/2" seams mentioned in the original instructable. This is because the original designer trimmed the extra 1/4" off the seams after she sewed. I wanted to skip most of the trimming.

You can do whatever way is easiest for YOU. However, keep in mind that when I say sew at 1/4" for the remainder of this tutorial, you will be sewing at a 1/2" if you do not modify the pattern. Just be sure to trim the seams down to 1/4" afterwards.

Step 2: Sew the Darts

Sew the darts on all the pattern pieces.

Then press them down to the side and iron out any creases in fabric.

Step 3: Baste the Front Two Pieces Together

Pin and sew the front two pieces with wrong sides together.

Make sure to sew WITHIN the 1/4" allowance. Don't worry about the backstitching with this part, unless you want to; this is literally just to hold the pieces together to make your life easier later.

Step 4: Binding the Back Piece (a.k.a. Pocket)

Pin the 1" fabric strip to the top of your third pattern piece on the wrong side. If you have this cut to 10" already, start pinning from the center and move outward.

If you have not cut the fabric strip, just pin all the way across and cut where the mask ends.

Sew at 1/4".

Press out the seam toward the right side.

Trim the seam down to about an 1/8".

Iron a fold just short of 1/4" wide on the raw edge of the strip.

Then iron the binding again, folding it over the edge of the newly trimmed piece. Make sure it covers the previous stitch line. If not, readjust.

Now pin** in place and top stitch.

** I prefer using basting tape so I don't have to mess with pins when it comes to binding.

Step 5: Basting the Mask Together

Now pin together the front pieces (that have already been basted) and the back piece. The wrong side of the back piece will face the right side of one of the front two pieces.

Pin from the bottom center out to the bottom two corners. Then pin up the sides.

The back piece will be shorter than the front layers. This is a good thing!

Sew WITHIN the 1/4" allowance.

This is basting, so once again, don't worry about backstitches.

Step 6: Pleats

Now you will have to create pleats on the sides so that the new measurement is 2.5" long.

Iron and hand baste them into place.

Make sure to match up the pleats on both sides so that folds align. Also try to fold the pleats so that the sides remain straight. This is probably one of the most tedious steps and will probably take a couple tries with the iron.

Pin one of the 1.5" strips to the sides on the back piece. ( You have either already cut two 2.5" long strips or have an extra strip that needs to be cut down to size. )

Sew at 1/4".

Press the binding to the front.

Iron a 1/4" fold on the raw edge.

Then iron the binding again, folding it over the edge of the mask. Make sure it covers the previous stitch lines. If not, readjust.

Pin or tape in place. Topstitch.

Trim off any overhang.

Step 7: Attaching the Ties

Pin the center of one of the 1"x42" strip to the bottom center of the back of the mask. Pin outwards toward the sides.

To do the top, first pin the corners of the pocket down as pictured so you do not accidentally sew it shut. Then match the center of the second strip to the center of the top of the mask. Pin outwards.

Sew at 1/4".

Take your time, especially with the top part. You will most likely sew over the very tip of the corner of the pocket. This is okay. It won't affect the mask.

Step 8: Finishing the Ties

Press seams flat towards the front of the mask.

Then iron a 1/4" fold on the raw edges of the binding. Start with the parts attached to the mask. Then work your way out.

When you get to the ends of the binding, fold it in and iron. Once again, I used basting tape to secure it in place.

Then iron the binding in half length wise on the "tie" portion. For the parts attached to the mask, fold it over, making sure to cover previous stitches. Readjust if necessary. Iron and pin (or tape).


Step 9: Congrats You're Done!