Face Masks as Community Courtesy
Face masks are all over the news, so I certainly don’t have to tell you much about them. If anything, there’s currently TOO MUCH information out there. If you’re trying to make masks to donate to medical professionals, make sure you understand the requirements of your local community. Many hospitals are requesting specific patterns and styles. Mask Match can help match you with a local medical professional who is in need of your masks!
But my masks are not to a specific hospital spec, they’re just for me and David to wear on errands, as a courtesy to the community and the workers there. Fancy Tiger Crafts summarized it perfectly, and helped to convince me: “We all need to be wearing masks when going on essential errands or outside, both to protect our essential workers and the most vulnerable, and to help de-stigmatize the wearing of masks.”
I am so grateful for everyone who is still working at Publix right now, enabling me to pick up essentials like bananas, salad, and Haagen Dazs. But these workers are out in public all day, and have to come into contact with so many strangers. I’m choosing to wear a mask at the grocery store to help give the Publix workers a tiny bit of peace of mind.
One of the many tricky things about this virus is its incubation time: the long period of time in which people may be contagious without having any symptoms. We may be asymptomatic and still pose a risk to our community. We all have to continue to do our best to remain isolated, and for those moments that we can’t maintain isolation, a face mask is a courteous way to protect our community.
The Fancy Tiger Crafts post has many good resources. This is the mask pattern I used. Just two 6×9″ rectangles (optional middle layer for more filtration) and two 7″ elastic ties per mask. I used quilting cotton for the outside, and a soft flannel for the inside/face side. Three pleats on each side (the most finnicky part) and some topstitching, then all done!
I made two masks for each of us so that we can wash one after each wear, and wear the spare while the first is drying. We don’t wear them outside – it’s too hot for that, and not necessary since we maintain distance from others while walking. But for going into stores, it’s nice to be able to show the workers that we care about keeping them safe.