Keep Calm and Sew On—Because It’s What We Do
Many organizations and individuals are requesting fabric masks during our coronavirus pandemic. While N95 masks are standard in the care of COVID-19 patients, according to the CDC fabric masks are a crisis response option when other supplies have been exhausted.
We continue to receive updated information about requests for home-sewn face masks and information about their efficacy.
Information from some sources seems to contradict that from other sources. However, it is important to understand that there is value to any type of face mask you may be making. Our healthcare providers will use a donated mask in whatever setting is appropriate for that type of mask.
The link below was sent in an email from Golden Quilt Company, who is working with SCL Health. It provides specific information vetted by a large, local healthcare system. Getting onboard with their program is an important way we can help locally. Check it out!
We have also received information about a request for masks from Craig Hospital. This is the information from their email:
We are accepting fabric or cloth face masks that you can make at home. Deaconess Hospital has put together some excellent instructions on how to make masks. You can access their directions on making masks in the link below or watch their how-to video link below. Please contact Jill Stelley Virden (email@example.com or 303-789-8417) to arrange for a time to drop them off at Craig.
This next link provides excellent information that answers many of the mask-making questions we all have. While this video emphasizes the use of a non-woven layer, it is clear (as evidenced by SCL Health and Craig Hospital mask requirements) that not all facilities require one.
From Barb Gardner: As many of you know, the Navajo and Hopi Nations have been extremely hard hit by the Covid 19 pandemic and are lacking PPE. Denise Labadie is working with Dr. Maria Michael to collect sewing supplies necessary in the making of masks and gowns. Supplies include 100% cotton fabric, thread, elastic and sewing machines, in working order. A local physician will drive them to the reservation to be distributed. If you are willing and able to help by donating materials, please contact Denise for more information.
Denise Labadie (Snell)
2827 Clear Creek Lane
Online mask patterns and instructions are proliferating. To save you from time-consuming searching, here are possible options:
One caveat: A local hospital did some pathogen testing on masks, and the flannel ones didn’t pass. So please refrain from using flannel.
For those of you who want to make masks with filters, this information about using HEPA filters may interest you if you happen to have some on hand:
Where to get elastic. Need elastic for your masks? Lin-Juan provides info on where to get some that are almost like the surgical mask’s elastic. It’s through Amazon and may take about 3 weeks from ordering to delivery.
Instructions: Cut 7” x 2 for each mask. You need to tie knots at both ends of the elastic before sewing to the mask to prevent elastic from pulling out.
Getting Masks to Those in Need
We know of at least one national organization that has compiled information about where masks can be dropped off. It includes information for every state/region. At this time three locations in our own area are listed, along with their addresses.
#GetUsPPE. Scroll down and select For those seeking to give.
Note: If you make masks for Boulder Community Health, they request masks made of heavier cotton fabric, such as denim, twill, or duck.
One of our Community Outreach groups Blue Sky Bridge is in need of masks. Blue Sky Bridge fosters safe communities, healing, and justice to end child abuse. They need about 20 masks for adults and 10 for children.
Boulder County has requested a total of 1240 masks for children, youth, and adults. They desire to get two masks for every person in the county that is invisible, struggling to meet rent and/or feed their families, find work, get well, is underserved or struggling to get resources, and trying to get through this with less risk to others. These masks serve to lower that risk and help people feel included in the larger community when they are in public. People of color especially are seeing more interaction with police because of the lack of a mask. The County would appreciate masks from 6×5, to 7×5, to 8×6 inch sizes, for youth, for smaller heads and larger heads regardless of gender. With elastic or with t-shirt fabric ties – they will all be distributed to those in need!
The County has provided tee shirts to be used for making ties for masks. These tees have been laundered. If you are willing to help make these masks and would like to pick up some tees to make ties, please contact Eileen Hayes at 609-902-6314 or firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange to get them. If you would like to drop off any masks for the sheriff’s office, you can drop them at Eileen’s house at 2935 Island Drive in Boulder. If she is not at home, there is a clean bag in the dairy box on the front porch for you to place them. If you have put metal into the mask nose areas, please put a note indicating that, together with the masks. She will get them to the Sheriff’s Office contact as their administration building is currently closed.
Luana Rubin of eQuilter has received a request from the governor’s office for those with sewing machines and sewing skills to supply DIY face masks for folks at the Colorado Department of Revenue. These folks are keeping state agencies running, including making it possible for us to get our tax refund checks for instance.
eQuilter is a collection point for masks for several groups including the Colorado Department of Revenue. If you’d like to help out, contact Luana at eQuilter, www.eQuilter.com, or Amber at the Colorado Department of Revenue, email@example.com.
Updated eQuilter Info Page on sewing face masks and PPE
Rochelle Moore suggests that you call your personal physicians, dentists, rehab centers as they may not know masks are available. Either offer to make them or refer them to where they can request them.
Barb Gardner has a friend who needs masks. If you have extras, please contact Jill at JillJagemannbgc@gmail.com or 720-231-5249. She lives in Lafayette so could pick them up (or Barb could). Feel free to use Barb’s name if you contact her.
Centennial Peaks in Louisville needs masks. Nurses are required to wear masks for 40 hours before they are issued a fresh one. They would be so grateful to get washable masks. Please contact Nancy Feinstein who lives in Anthem Ranch. Her email is NaBecker1@gmail.com.
The Longmont Division of Vocational Rehabilitation expresses a need for about 50 masks to distribute to their clients. They work with clients that are disabled and many are having a tough time finding or making masks. Contact Stephanie Shuler at Stephanie.Shuler@State.co.us. You can also drop them off Monday-Thursday, 8:30 AM – 4:00 PM at
825 Delaware Ave, Suite 402
One of the Directors of the Royal Family Kids Camp for foster children requested 30-50 masks for Boulder County Social Workers. They request masks that allow a 3-5 inch filter to be inserted.
Delivery can be arranged with Ruth Williams Ruth@bvchristian.org
In all likelihood, more organizations will be requesting home-sewn masks. Your help is urgently needed. Please consider sewing up some masks if you have not already contributed.
Members, please share with us any other contact information you have. Send to firstname.lastname@example.org