On masks and ties—Updated 4/25/2020…

Elastic, when we can find it, is what many of us have been using for mask ties. Most wearers like elastic but it bothers some people’s skin. Fabric ties are nice but slow to make.

Ann suggested using strips cut from t-shirts and they work really well… no sewing or serging necessary. We’ve been using T-shirt strips for a while and everyone loves them. Cut strips 1/2˝-3/4˝ x 18˝ either cross-grain or with the grain, it doesn’t seem to matter.

We are cutting ties longer because some of us like tying the ends behind our neck and head rather than in ear loops.

I use a wire “tie-threader” to pull ties through the mask casing, shown in my original mask post. But I realized that people who want to replace ties won’t have seen my bent-wire threader, so I added that information to the instruction sheet I give out with my masks.

If these instructions work with the masks you are making, you are welcome to use my instruction sheet. Here is a link to the instruction sheet: https://www.dropbox.com/s/5m7rognqml7s2mx/Mask%20Instructions.pdf?dl=0. There are 4 to a page.

May you be healthy, and happy, and may you have many happy stitches!

7 thoughts on “On masks and ties—Updated 4/25/2020…

  1. Thanks to Gerry Congdon, I am using t-shirt knit strips for my ties. No sewing, no turning, soft, stretchy and totally washabke.


  2. I didn’t have any elastic so I :
    -Cut 4 strips of crosswise T-shirt, 7/8” x 18”
    -Pull to stretch and roll edges under
    -Zigzag down the length for a strong and
    slightly stretchy tie!
    Love your art and blog, thanks!


  3. Check out my interest quick way to add ties with no ironing. YouTube: Carol Esch 8 minute ties. You might want to pass it. It’s a game changer.

    On Thu, Apr 9, 2020 at 10:53 AM Piece O Cake Blog wrote:

    > Becky Goldsmith posted: ” Elastic, when we can find it, is what many of us > have been using for mask ties. Most wearers like elastic but I do want to > point out that it bothers some people’s skin. In that case, fabric ties > might be better. When I run out of elastic, I will go b” >


  4. I am making ties a different way. I cut a one inch wide strip the length of a tie and then fold it lengthwise as i feed it through my serger. Super fast and plenty strong. I’m so appreciating that I got a used serger last summer for a great price. If you don’t have a serger, I think a zig zag stitch on a regular sewing machine would work, but the fold on the length of the strip might need ironing to make it easier to feed under the needle. When I have a long enough length of fabric, I cut a strip the length of two ties, run that through the serger, and then cut it in half lengthwise to make the two ties. That is even a bit faster than individual ties.


  5. Many of the machine manufactures make a bias binding foot (6mm or 1/4 inch is pretty common. This foot will attach in place of your existing foot, and acts like the clover bias maker… but also ATTACHES it, sewing it all together in a single step. I can start with just sewing the bias, then halfway through, sew the mask in, then finish up the final piece of bias. Just have to cut and attach rotary cut strips to run through the process! I use a Husqvarna Viking Epic, and there are several binding and bias binding attachments for it. These are generally something used primarily by dressmakers, though bias tape for applique could be made as well! Always glad to hear from you, Becky!
    – Karen in Austin


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