I’ve got the mask making process down pretty well, now. I continue to improvise as I figure out more efficient ways of doing each step but I’m now bored out of my mind. I’ve figured out what to do and doing it over and over and over is driving me batty – however, I’m keeping at the face mask making.
There are still a number of bottle necks:
- Cut the rope elastic – but each mask needs two pieces and each piece needs a knot in both ends – 50 masks – 100 knots and that takes more time than you realize!
- Either pinning (as in the photo below) or clipping the knotted elastic in position in the corners of the sides takes WAAAY more time than I want it to; and I haven’t yet sewn the side seams!
I got all 25 masks in today’s batch pinned and side seams sewn:
However, each mask needs to be turned right side out – that takes a lot longer than sewing the side seams which went quickly.
Along the way, I realized I didn’t need to measure each mask for the first seam with the opening in the middle – I positioned a piece of green masking tape at the start point where I could align one edge, and the marks on the blue masking tape mark the positioning on the second edge. Sewing the seam with the opening went quickly after that.
Another problem arose: sewing in the rope elastic was difficult – the start of the seam kept getting caught in the wide opening in the zigzag needle plate. I finally switched to the straight stitch needle plate with a small hole for the needle – much better.
I’ve also figured out which foot is best for each operation and I make sure I keep changing feet to do the job. That keeps the process running smoothly.
At the moment my tally is 37 + 25 masks. I still have to stitch in the pleats on the 25 – I’ll get that done tomorrow. The bulk of those masks are for family in Toronto. They’ll get shipped as soon as they’re washed and dried.
This afternoon I called a nearby seniors’ residence offering to make masks for them if they can use them. Haven’t heard back as of this writing.
I’m not planning on making this effort a life-long project. I’m now finding the mask making boring; but I’m willing to work away at another 50-100 to help out should they be needed.