Where to Buy Face Masks in Lansing, Plus Some Vetted Make-at-Home Patterns


Gov. Whitmer’s Newest Order Strongly Encourages Face Masks When in Public

Governor Whitmer has declared that we can golf again! And go boating! And buy garden supplies!

But… you’re gonna need a mask for that.

Michigan’s Stay-at-Home order is extended to May 15, but according to the emergency alert that we all received, “Individuals are strongly encouraged to wear a homemade, non-medical grade mask when they leave the house.”

While I am not going to interpret these orders, I’m going to guess that you don’t have to wear your mask if you’re going on a boat with your family or going for a walk, but if you’re going somewhere that you’ll encounter people you don’t live with, mask it up.

Will I be Arrested if I Don’t Have a Mask?

No, you will not be arrested.

“Under the order, no one will be subject to criminal penalty for going without a mask,” Whitmer said at today’s press briefing, adding that these masks are crucial to protecting the public and employees.

So basically, we need to wear masks to show respect for those around us, and to help slow the spread of coronavirus so we can all return to the movie theaters and concerts some day.

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Things to Look for in a Face Mask

Whether you buy or make a mask, there are some common things to look for. The CDC has good recommendations, including a mask that:

  • fits snug around the nose and sides of face
  • uses multiple layers of fabric
  • can be easily laundered (in the washing machine is easiest)
  • secures to face with ties or elastic (or stretchy knit)
  • is not see through when held up to bright light (ensuring the material is dense enough to filter out particles)

And finally

  • is breathable!!! So many patterns out there do not consider the function of the mask.

What even is breathable? Cotton, like T-shirts, quilting cotton and even bandanas (in multiple layers).

Once you’ve got one, you should know how to wear it. Here are some pointers from fellow Michigander, Lindsay Fraser on how to wear a pleated face mask.

Where to Buy Face Masks in Lansing

I live in a community of quilters, and my friends, family and I have had masks for weeks. We’ve all been whipping them up for other close friends and family without sewing machines, and often donating them to organizations who have asked for masks.

But most people do not know how to sew. And even if you did, you may not have time to sew, between trying to work 40 hours a week while simultaneously taking care of toddlers and trying to be a substitute teacher for your older kids. And making every meal because restaurants are closed.

So if the thought of making a mask stresses you out, just buy a face mask. Here’s where:

Seams | East Lansing | (517) 402-4148

Making masks and open for curbside pickup on patterns, fabric, and more.

Sofia Henderson | Lansing

Both child and adult versions available. Message her on Facebook to order.

Gemini Handmade

Appears to have both local pickup and mail options as masks are available.

Lee & Birch

Masks for sale on their site are made in California and shipped to you.

Are you selling well-made face masks right now? Put your contact info in the comments so readers can find you!

Two Types of Mask Patterns if you Own a Sewing Machine

If you own a sewing machine and haven’t made a mask by now, I’m going to assume that you are not really confident in your sewing skills.

Good news: sewing face masks are easy for novice sewists, if you find the right pattern.

Best Fitted Face Mask Pattern & Tutorial

My favorite is Mimi G’s mask. It’s a fitted mask with no sewing through pleats required. You’re sewing two pieces of fabric together and then feeding through either elastic or ties.

This mask is also good for us spectacled citizens: it fits under your glasses, eliminating the “foggy spectacles” look.

If you want to get zany, you can leave a hole in the top to insert a filter.

Want to try pleated?

Best Pleated Face Mask Patterns/Tutorials

Pleated masks are nice because they’re a little more customizable to your face. You can open it up however much you need to create a good fit.

I like this pattern by SarahMaker because it leaves an option for inserting a filter.

My sewing friends have vetted this pattern. It is extra helpful for health care workers, as you can wear a medical-grade mask underneath it.

My friend tried and vetted this pattern making them for her entire family. It works great for both adults and kids, you’ll just need to adjust the straps accordingly. This pattern also allows for inserting a filter.

Tie Materials for Masks

The most comfortable masks tie around the back of your head, as opposed to over the ears. Both methods work, but you get longer wear out of behind-the-head models. Materials you can use are:

  • 1/4″ elastic (Sold out in many places, so unless you have it on hand, this may not be an option for you. It is also uncomfortable for the behind-the-ears masks. Best suited for around the head.)
  • bias binding tape
  • quilter’s cotton cut in long strips
  • knit cut from old t-shirts (friendliest for behind-the-ears masks)

No-Sew Mask Options

There are approximately 4,200 no-sew mask tutorials out there. About 4,199 of them are not the most practical. Who wants to spend an hour making a face mask?? Nobody. Not even someone with a sewing machine.

I used my sewist experience to dig through the noise and find three no-sew options that I think are the most suitable.

No-Sew Face Mask From a T-Shirt Sleeve

I like this one the best. You just cut out a shirt sleeve, cut some strategic holes for the ears, and you’re on your way.

No Sew Face Mask With a Bandana or Simple Rectangle Cut from Fabric

I recommend using a piece of quilting cotton or maybe even a knit shirt, as I don’t think that bandanas have the best close weave, and thus wouldn’t keep as many particles from passing through it.

But basically, grab a rectangle of fabric and some hair ties (yeah, they’re probably better than the rubber bands they use here) and make this mask.

CDC Patterns for No Sew Face Masks

The CDC has two simple, realistic options for no sew masks. One is similar to the bandana method above, and one is cut straight from a t-shirt, ties included.

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