UPDATE: Our local health care professionals are now in need of caps as well as the masks. I’ve added a couple of different patterns that we’re using to this post.
You may remember that back in January, I shared the need for materials being sewn, knitted, and crocheted for the animals being injured by the Australian wildfires. They don’t need our help anymore (but some local rescues are still in need so be sure to reach out locally if you still want ot help with those. Now, there’s been a request for us to start making face masks.
Please understand that no one is saying these will replace proper medical masks. However, I have already seen multiple places around the world saying that they have run out of the proper masks and need the next best thing. In fact, the premier of Ontario even said that companies with sewing machines are stepping up to help make these.
Calling all Sewists: Making Face Masks
The CDC says, regarding these homemade masks:
In settings where facemasks are not available, HCP might use homemade masks (e.g., bandana, scarf) for care of patients with COVID-19 as a last resort. However, homemade masks are not considered PPE, since their capability to protect HCP is unknown.
Caution should be exercised when considering this option. Homemade masks should ideally be used in combination with a face shield that covers the entire front (that extends to the chin or below) and sides of the face.”
So, just to be clear, no one is saying this is the perfect answer, but I have seen medical clinics already reaching out for this, so it has become desperate in some situations. In addition, if there are no medical centers in your area in need (and I realize mailing them in might be a problem), these could still be a “better than nothing” option for seniors and others at risk.
Please note, I am not in the health care field. I have no expertise here. I am merely passing along the information that I’m seeing in case you want to help. It might even serve as a great distraction from the ever-changing news updates out there.
If you have a sewing machine and some suitable fabric, you can make these. Search on Facebook for local groups – one has already popped up in London, Ontario and many other places around the world. Here is the local London group. People are sharing resources and tips there and a local sewing shop owner is offering supplies and even the loan of machines if needed.
If you have a Cricut machine, you can get a free SVG file for the masks here.
If you can’t find any local groups, try reaching out to local medical clinics or even veterinary clinics. I know our vets want to donate their medical grade masks to the hospitals but they need cloth masks in place of them first!
Here is one option for a scrub cap pattern.
This one is a pixie style tie back scrub cap. Note that it is not a free pattern. If the cost of it is holding you back, please contact me. I am happy to cover the cost of pattern for as many people as I can.
This post will continue to be updated as I learn more. I welcome comments with other links to places that are looking for them.